Bernard Zimmermann's blog

Uncertainty over Bauer, on its Pacific Magazines acquisition

POS SOFTWARE

It appears that the Bauer may be reconsidering its proposed purchase of Pacific Magazines deal despite getting ACCC approval.

Everyone is sure it has to do with the uncertainly of coronavirus.

If I was Blauer,  I would be wondering about coronavirus firstly what it will do to circulation. Some think that with more people at home, reading magazine will grow in popularity.

Still, that is not the big revenue issue but the fact that that the outlook for advertising spending is down, the prime problem here is the postponement of significant events such as the Olympics.

If it does not go ahead, I think that it is unfortunate for many magazine resellers, as the commercial reality today means the acquisition it is necessary to produce cost cuts required by the industry.

Having said that despite what has been said the circulation declines in the last few years, I expect more magazine titles closing. What is important is that this acquisition may reduce this trend.

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Video conferencing software review

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Most suppliers will have their own favourites, here is a list of ones that I think if you have not got anything to look at that can handle 4+ people and are free to use. For family and friends, you may need it too

Google hangouts, as most people now have a Gmail account, they are already signed up. We use this one for our video conferencing. We find it very good for chatting. What I like is that it can run on a very wide variety of platforms. It is fairly easy to use once you get used to it.  It also being actively updated.

The problems we have is that it does require a decent internet connection if you have a bad quality internet which happens a lot in Australia when the NBN goes haywire, you can be cut out.   

Here are some others 

Discord 

Google duo 

Uberconference
To ease disruption from COVID-19, UberConference Free now allows longer call duration and up to 50 participants.

Whatsapp

Many of the Australian schools are using it now, so many people already have it. What is really good about it is the security.

Zoom you may this one as it is now taking off because the schools are switching to it. From what we have been told its close to breaking point with now over 25 million users.

Jitsi

Houseparty

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eCommerce websites

POS SOFTWARE

One point about the current lockdown is that eCommerce is continuing unaffected, I am sure that it is going up. People are not afraid to shop via apps and websites. Many now have nothing to do but research and buy online products that they need.

What I have noticed is that in our clients' websites, the product mix is changing rapidly as one great advantage with online shops is that the range of products can be quickly changed as you do not have to have the product to sell it. 

 

 

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How far off are you to last year's sales due to coronavirus?

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What many want to know is what effect is this coronavirus having on your business.

What several of my clients are telling me because many people are at home, they are buying very differently now. This I will discuss in another post. Let us first work out where we are up to now.

The report I recommend that you look at first is in the Reporting Documents > Dissection Family Class Period Sales Comparison.

Put in the following details.

 

There are many more options here but let us keep it simple, you can always experiment later if you want to learn more, so leave it as All Stock lines and do not select for the extra information as yet. You will still get a very detailed comparison by department and class. 

 

It will make I am sure fascinating reading, in my view, the two most important metrics here are Qty which are the number of sales for each department and the $ Profit made by each department. 

What can also be useful is running the same report comparing the year before last year with the same period this year.

Remember that random chance dictates that about third are up, a third is down and the rest about the same. So you need to study the figures.

At the end of today's trading, you simply need to include date of today to get current figures.

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Coronavirus

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Ain't this the truth, how we are all feeling now

 

The coronavirus has created a lot of upheaval and uncertainty in all of our lives. However, despite these worrying times, I want to reassure you that we are here for you and will continue to service your computer and software needs.

We are now implementing several changes to ensure so we can continue to provide service across all our operations. We're ready to help you and are committed to delivering the excellent service that we always do.

If you need to make contact with us the usual methods continue; mail, online chat, email and telephone. 

Just please stay safe, and we encourage you to monitor the Australian Government's COVID-19 health alerts here.

We hope in these turbulent times, you, your staff and your loved ones stay safe.

Kind regards,

Bernard Zimmermann

POS Solution director

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Webcam

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We all this virus running around, I think many of you are going to find that many schools, suppliers and others are going to be using video conferencing rather than sending people out. Besides being more time effective and cheaper, it also means less social contact.

For most of them, your smartphone is fine, most laptops have an inbuilt camera and microphones already set up. I prefer the laptop as its a bigger picture.

If you wish to use a computer you need to purchase a Webcam and Mic which will clip onto your computer and allows you to see on video and chat face-to-face over the Internet in real-time. 

* Although I suggest that you make sure its resolution on standard is at least 640 pixels by 480 pixels nowadays for very little more you can get a high definition (HD) video, with 1,600 pixels by 1,200 pixels so I would say an HD.  

* The higher the megapixels the better. 

* Look at the frames per second (fps),  lower fps rates will create problems including jumpy videos with out-of-sync audio. I would recommend looking at nothing less than 30 but more is better. Over 60 fps its overkill.

* I find built-in microphones better than headsets. It is less restrictive.

* Low-light sensitivity can be very useful as often we tend on my computer to work in low light so the light is often not the best

* You need a decent internet connection speed but most of us have that now anyway. 

 

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Coronavirus

POS SOFTWARE

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Debt controlling

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Debt is everywhere, it affects almost every human organisation, in my lifetime, I have seen the greatest empire in the world, the USSR and most important people like the Shah of Iran collapse from it. 

They did not have money to pay for people, and because of the debt no-one would lend them more money, soon their worlds collapsed.

Debt is part of modern life. If you sit back and wait, the worst might just happen. Here is a quick way of determining just how much debt your business is owed.

So go to main menu.

Register reports


Now usually, I would recommend using Trial Balance(excel), but for this example, I just wish it to be simple, so I selected Trial Balance.

 

 

Now select today's date, although just to show you the power of our system, I picked a random date many years ago.

I also selected by order by Surname as I think it makes it easier to find, and I ignored the "More Criteria" because I do want to keep it simple, but I urge you to experiment later with these options.

 

 

Now out pops among other details a page like this one below Although for security reasons, I blanked out the names, you can see all the relevant information is here.

 

A total will be printed at the end.

This gives you a quick look to understand your situation.

 

What interesting exercise is to go back in and select today's date last year and see how your debt situation is shaping up. If it is dramatically going up, I would suggest that you take action rather then praying for the best.

 

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