Founded in 1950, Retail Data Systems is the largest provider of POS systems (both hardware and software) in North America. Seider says, "RDS enjoys partnerships with the largest POS vendors in the industry, with Customers like Five Guys, Save-A-Lot, and Firehouse Subs.
Over the past 26 years, Seider has seen POS solutions evolve from manual systems - think hand-written orders and adding-machine-like cash registers – to modern, digital systems with touch-screen processing, remote printers, and inventory management. These systems integrate every aspect of the retail business. He further explains, "Our customers look to RDS to help guide them through the, legal and business aspects of the industry, we interface them to their accounting systems, their business intelligence systems and even their banking systems." RDS's systems transcend horizontal integration to encompass the difficult task of vertical integration as well. Seider describes a system that was put in place by the franchisor of a quick-serve restaurant automating its franchisee royalty collection.
This level of integration is not without its challenges. RDS keeps itself updated by tapping all the new things happening in the retail sector and its needs. Whether it's cloud computing, software or health care and how it affects the labor pool, the firm spends ample amount of time studying and watching the current trends in the business.
Seider says, "Since we are a large POS solutions provider, we have the ability to bring the best products to our customers and we spend a lot of time training our more than 400 employees because that's who interfaces with our customers. As an independent Company RDS can customize a solution that fits the business needs of the client instead of the one size fits all approach that manufacturers often use. So I would say it's our products our people, and our independence that set us apart." This stands as the sole reason that differentiates his firm from competitors.
RDS takes a unique view of the care they offer to their customers which is why Seider says, "We look long term at our relationship with our customers. We will take a short-term loss in order to achieve a long-term gain and invest with our customers on technology that might cost us in the short term but will bring a gain for both them and us."
The coming years are no less challenging than the present but RDS will continue to thrive with the evolving markets. The company envisions continuing to offer the right match of technology for particular customer needs, understanding what they want technology to do for them, and how RDS can play a vital role to cater to the retail sector.