RTY plc is a UK retail company with retail outlets in the south-east and north-west of England. In total the company has six retail outlets in the south-east and eight in the north-west. The company currently employs 195 staff. The company has been trading successfully for a number of years. For the year ending 31 December 2002 the company’s turnover was £4.8m and its net profit for the year was £1.1m. As part of the company’s information technology strategy, RTY plc is considering installing an Electronic Point Of Sale (EPOS) system for use in all its retail outlets. The company is, however, aware that the acquisition and development of an EPOS system would require not only a substantial capital investment, but also a significant change in operating procedures at each of the retail outlets – possibly involving staff redundancies. The management board of RTY plc have asked you, as their recently appointed Systems Accountant, to prepare a report on EPOS systems for presentation to the company’s management board at its next meeting in June 2003.
Prepare a report for the management board of RTY plc on the development and implementation of an EPOS system. Your report should provide;
1. a brief description of how an EPOS system works,
2. a review of the potential advantages and disadvantages of EPOS systems for the company, and
3. an evaluation of the potential control problems RTY plc could face as a consequences of implementing a company-wide EPOS system for its retail operations.