Med-Book is a turn-key inventory management system specifically designed by Matthews to fully meet the many specialized needs of the health science bookstore environment. Matthews developed Med-Book after extensively searching the retail industry and failing to find a system that could adequately provide the inventory management and customer service functions required for a first-class health science bookstore. Med-Book was developed over many years, at a cost of several hundreds of thousands of dollars. The research and development that led to the creation of Med-Book continues today with the enhancement of features and functionality, which address the industry’s changing needs. Since its introduction to the marketplace, Med-Book has become the premier inventory management system among health science bookstores and the model for all other systems being developed in this industry. With 50 installations across the United States, Med-Book resides in many health science bookstores.
It is designed as more than just an automation tool - it also leads the way in bookstore process redesign and customized business function management. In its fundamental design, Med-Book takes the cumbersome manual tasks of bookstore inventory management, streamlines the processes, incorporates flexibility to meet individual needs of individual stores, and automates inventory management for maximum return and benefit. Med-Book is the most sophisticated and specialized inventory management application for the health science bookstore in North America.
Med-Book includes software, hardware, and point of sale. It provides for the management of reference, course, and multimedia items, as well as instruments; streamlines and automates the order/receive/sell/return process; optimizes the special order process; tracks sales and purchase histories; constantly monitors and analyzes inventory; tracks customers; includes the Matthews Book Company Title and Vendor Database; and incorporates industry standard communications capabilities.
The installation of the Med-Book Inventory Control System will benefit the store by enabling
- Quicker response, more information and overall better service to customers
- Knowledgeable and informed store personnel
- More informed buying decisions improving title selection
- Tightly managed turnover with more titles in stock
- Increased sales with higher product availability and broader selection for improved customer fulfillment
- Optimal management of quantities, inventory capital and inventory turns for greater profitability
- Improved order management saving inventory capital expenditures
- Elimination of steps in the order, receiving and returns processes for increased time savings
- Error reductions improving pricing accuracy and margins
- Overall time savings, improved customer service, better informed staff, better buying and management decisions, increased sales and improved profitability
In summary, in order to remain competitive in the rapidly changing health science bookstore industry, stores require more accurate and detailed information, better decision-making capabilities and a broader market opportunity without increasing expenses. Med-Book is the single most valuable tool to ensure that a bookstore can leverage service, operational efficiency, increased incremental sales, and improved profitability to its highest potential.
MED-BOOK APPLICATION OVERVIEW
The Med-Book application consists of five main functions: Inventory Control and Management, Purchasing, Special Orders, Course Order Entry and Communications.
Inventory Control and Management
Inventory control and management records sales, receipts, transfers and adjustments. It produces stock status reviews on demand for all books and items. It identifies exceptional conditions such as items approaching the minimum stock level and suggests those books and items that may need ordering. A number of management reports can help identify the store's bestsellers based on their sales rankings.
Effective inventory control requires that returns must be closely monitored. Med-Book allows store personnel to analyze the need to return products based on criteria the store has specified (such as "last date of sale", "date of last receipt", by vendor). The Suggested Returns options presents the books and their associated purchase order allowing store personnel to choose the appropriate product to take action on for return. Chargebacks are automatically generated (or may be entered manually). All chargebacks remain open until store personnel tell Med-Book (through Returns Reconciliation) that a credit was received.
Inventory Management Features:
Track inventory based on UPC, ISBN, SKU
- Track inventory by multiple locations within a store
- Sales departments: designate multiple departments by item/ISBN user defined and maintained
- On-hand and On-order quantities tracked by: new, used, course, reference, special order
- Minimum and Maximum Inventory Levels capabilities for course and reference
- Physical Inventory processing
- Inventory analysis
- Bestseller identification
- Item transaction history
- Multiple units of measure for stocking, selling, and purchasing
- Returns via vendor or item
- Suggested return report
- Vendor return policy file
- Automatic/Manual creation of charge-backs
- Return reconciliation process
Special Orders Management
Special Order Processing is fast and easy. Med-Book pulls from the store's pre-established customer database of information (address, phone, credit card number) and associates this information with each line item ordered.
Store personnel can inquire during order entry about stock availability and any taxes, discounts, and delivery costs can be added to the order. Med-Book also allows you to define pickup codes and allows a follow-up date to be assigned to each order.
Special Orders Management Features:
- Multiple line items per special order
- Special Order analysis reports
- Automated update to inventory to relieve special order reserve
- Drop shipments
- User defined pick-up codes
- User defined mail options
- Special order labeling for in-store processing
Course Order Entry
The course book function allows access to past sales history, which enhances the ability to make effective buying decisions. Processing the receipt of course books is effortless with options to print shelf tags and course lists. Productivity gains are realized with the expanded course book functions in Med-Book .
Course Order Entry Features:
- Pre-requisition processing
- User definable department and course codes
- Term comparison reporting on price changes for holdover management
- Shelf tags
- Course lists
- No response list
- Stock status reports by course
- Sales analysis for books
Purchasing management provides essential stock ordering and receiving information. Med-Book can automatically propose which books and items should be ordered based on the minimum stocking quantity established by the store's manager. After selecting the order information, purchase orders are printed including vendor prices.
Med-Book will track partial receipt of books and items. The purchase order remains open until all items are received. The system then automatically closes the order. The vendor invoice can be used to verify that the correct quantity, price and discount are applied. Med-Book will help the store's personnel make more profitable purchases and keep better inventory balances, reaching a higher return on the store's inventory investment.
Purchasing Management Features:
- Order release by: course, reference, specific PO, all vendors, specific vendors
- Maintain prices, discounts per item by vendor
- Order transmission via EDI
- Print vendor's item number on PO
- PO release and due date
- Line item comments to print on PO and display on receiving screen
- Receive by: Item/ISBN, PO, vendor, auto-receive
- Maintain receiving history
- Past due order report
- PO report summary
- Book/items ordered and received report
- Expected shipments report on demand
- Vendor/item file inquiries list on demand
- PO reconciliation
Information access and dissemination via electronic data transfer mechanisms is an essential component to today's health sciences bookstore business functions. Med-Book accommodates industry standard data transmission capabilities to allow direct links to information networks that are available to almost all schools, suppliers and stores today.
Electronic Data Transfer (EDI), computer-to-computer network communication via the ISO X.12 standard protocol, is one feature of the Med-Book communications architecture. The efficiencies EDI provides to the ordering and receiving timeframes for health sciences stores will minimize inventory investment while improving product availability by cutting the lead time associated with ordering and receiving books. Purchase orders are transmitted while acknowledgments are received immediately.
Book Inventory Database Updates are an integral component of Med-Book 's communications architecture. This feature is vital to keeping the most current changes to book information accurate and up-to-date. Matthews automatically downloads these updates, on a weekly basis, to the store's book inventory database.
MED-BOOK HARDWARE COMPONENTS
- Tape Backup
- Report Printer
- Tharo 112 Thermal Tag Printer
- Expansion Ports
- CD Rom
- Graphical Display
- Cash Register(s)
MED-BOOK POINT OF SALE SYSTEM
Med-Book POS is a powerful PC based front-end system consisting of register hardware and application software that controls the store's point of sale. It is fully integrated within the Med-Book Inventory Management System.
Med-Book POS Features:
Generates reports that include important operating information:
- Insures pricing accuracy with automatic price look ups
- Combines a flexible item coding system with the power of classification merchandising system
- Enhances customer confidence with item descriptions of 20 characters
- Allows variable pricing and discounting matrix determined by customer type or quantity purchased
- Can print cash receipts, produce a written journal and print invoices
- Simplified daily close out procedure
- Accommodates up to 12 tendering types including cash, check, bank card, house charge, gift certificate, etc.
- Eliminates unauthorized voids, returns and discounts with programmable management control
- Easy to use with instructions on screen to prompt employees
Flexible hardware options, which include:
- Store totals that include sales, voids, returns, discounts, markdowns, tax,
- Customer counts
- Media payment totals
- Department sales
- Class reporting sales
- Item sales
- Hourly sales
- Employee sales
Inventory control features which include:
- Reports can be printed on 40 or 80 column printers, 40 column cash receipt printer with or without journal, with or without check endorsement
- 80 column invoice and report printer
- Slip printer for document validation
- Cash drawer with removable till opens electronically (optional two cash drawer configuration available)
- Barcode scanning or printing with wands, hand held laser scanners, counter top scanners, and thermal bar code printers
- Sales reporting of cost and gross margins, inventory reporting of units and cost, physical inventory level adjustments, reorder level reporting
- Mailing labels can be created from a special customer file
- Open orders/layaway feature can retain orders until finalized
- Merchandise transfers/receipts
- Automatic sale on/off
- Electronic mail
- Credit card authorization