I felt like giving up today on some newsagents suppliers.


The first is a well-known supplier of inkjets. We have told them 100,000 times of the problem with the files they have been sending out to newsagents. Yesterday they send another problem file to a client. After much frustration, the client rings us up, with a request “Just get it so it usable.” I am not surprised he had problems. What do you think of a barcode number 9.3E+12, it happens because someone in the supplier’s office has saved an excel spreadsheet wrongly. The supplier fixed that. We then patch this file so the computer can import. When testing the importing, we get warning that errors are everywhere. What do we find, duplicate barcodes everywhere! Heaps of products have the same barcode, with different prices. Newsagents are going to scan it and have wrong prices in the register. A barcode must have only one retail price. What am I suppose to do here? The newsagent is ringing us up every hour to tell us how frustrated he is that he cannot scan his inkjet. So I create a file talking out the low priced item if there are several barcodes. At least now, it scans. But I know what will happen when the higher price comes up. The customer will complain, the newsagents will look very bad. But it is that or no scanning.

The next that aggravated me was John Sands. They still do not have categories neither does Hallmark. Promises and promises and nothing from both to show for it after almost a year!

Yesterday a client rings up after importing John Sand’s electronic catalogue; his cards are now scanning with wrong prices. He has stopped scanning them. It turns out it is the file so we get another file from John Sands. It comes today. After importing this file more than 50% of the John Sand’s are not scanning. Patching up the file we get him scanning. Although some problems remain so we are too afraid to release the file to everyone.

The next one was another John Sands card file. A client rings up today frustrated. He tried to import in this file. It will not come in. We try many things but nothing works. So he sends us the file. I think it is special cards as it contains cards items that I have never seen. Again a file is wrong. I have to patch the file up before my client can import it in. Once he has this patched file, I am sure it will be fine.

Now, why do newsagents and we have to put up with this? I estimate that three newsagents, one support staff at POS and I have wasted because of supplier’s incompetence almost all of today and some of yesterday.