Framing Software

soho

CGF, Certified Grumble Framer
Joined
Feb 1, 2003
Posts
103
From
West Palm Beach, Florida
I'm finally getting to the point where I want to get a software package for the gallery. I don't need bar coding, inventory or anything else other than a digital "framing worksheet".

It seems to me that SpecialtySoft might be the best choice for my situation.

Any experiences or comments about this program would be appreciated fellow grumblers.

Different subject...The Omni Hotel in Atlanta has a good deal on rooms for the September Decor show. $168 per night includes a full breakfast in the restaurant or room service and free parking which is usually $20 per day.

Thanks

Joel
 

Todd-Art4you

CGF, Certified Grumble Framer
Joined
Feb 13, 2003
Posts
122
From
Ontario, Canada
I use Frameready which I really like. They provide you with vendor updates to keep your pricing up todate. I have noticed a few technical problems with it, but nothing that you can't get around. I still think it is the best of what I saw out there.
 

Framerguy

PFG, Picture Framing God
Joined
Apr 12, 2001
Posts
7,261
From
Destin, Florida
I have to agree on the FrameReady software. It is probably the least expensive full blown POS software on the market and I noticed that the new package also includes a licensed version of FileMaker Pro 6.0 with the purchase price.

You won't find anyone friendlier than the support bunch at STS and they have a dedicated forum on the FrameReady website where you can post questions and get help on using FrameReady.

The vendor updates (those that the vendors keep current) are almost worth the price of the software in time saved entering in new moulding/mat numbers and changes in pricing along with removing all the discontinued stuff periodically.

I would definitely check them out and download a demo of their software to play with.

Framerguy
 

Mike Labbe

Administrator
Forum Support Team
Forum Donor
Joined
Jun 25, 2002
Posts
18,236
From
Lincoln, RI
Business
Get The Picture
Specialtysoft, Frameready, and Lifesaver are the three that have the most features and largest market share. (all three have the features you said you didnt need)


There was a poll done recently in the VOTING forum about software, if you'd like to get some info about how your fellow grumbler peers fit in.

There's a software comparison guide HERE that shows 24 different POS programs, side by side. I tried to compile the info as neutrally as possible, and I hope it saves you a lot of research. There have been some great threads about POS Software in the Computers/Technical forum on the Grumble.

My advice is to NOT listen to any of us, :eek: because we all like what we're comfortable with and invested heavily in. Review ALL the alternatives, try the demos, talk to the vendors, ask questions, and check here for references - Armed with that information, you'll have the big picture to make the right decision.

I feel that an investment in the right software is one of the most important decisions that can be made, and will impact all aspects of your business.

If you run into any questions, that's why we're all here.

Mike
 

wpfay

Comfort Badger
Forum Support Team
Forum Donor
Joined
Sep 1, 2000
Posts
14,836
From
Jacksonville Beach, FL USA
Business
Sunshine Frames
Joel, If you don't need the full-blown software, SpecialtySoft does have a "lite" version that handles the frame pricing. The full version has merchandise management capability as well as being a complete POS for framing.

Have you tried the demo discs from any of these?
 

JFeig

SGF, Supreme Grumble Framer
Forum Donor
Joined
Oct 13, 1999
Posts
4,988
From
Oak Park, MI
And do not reject a system because they have more features than you want.

Look at the features you are most interested in. Look at the ease of operation of these features. The extras are "extra" now, they might be needed or wanted later. Consider them as room to grow features.
 

soho

CGF, Certified Grumble Framer
Thread starter
Joined
Feb 1, 2003
Posts
103
From
West Palm Beach, Florida
Wally...

I have reviewed the demos on most of the popular programs. The light version of SpecialtySoft appealed most to me, I was interested in everyone's opinions.

Remember, I owe you and Framerguy a beer in Atlanta!!
 

Smile with Style

CGF II, Certified Grumble Framer Level 2
Joined
Sep 27, 2001
Posts
349
From
Petrolia, Ontario "Canada's Victorian Oil Town"
Hi Joel,

In your post you mention...

I don't need bar coding, inventory or anything else other than a digital "framing worksheet".

What do you mean by digital "framing worksheet"? On-screen computer pricing? Virtual framing? I'm just curious
 

soho

CGF, Certified Grumble Framer
Thread starter
Joined
Feb 1, 2003
Posts
103
From
West Palm Beach, Florida
Carol

I just need a way to quickly calculate costs and create a framing worksheet from which to order the materials necessary for the job. Most important to me is the ability to have all of my suppliers latest inventories available thru the programs online updates.

I don't need the bar coding or inventory control because we don't sell readymades or gift items. Our primary business is the art gallery and all of those sales are handled on a different system.

Doing the worksheet manually under the pressure of a client looking over your shoulder is a recipe for making mistakes that cost money. The programs accurately do the proper costing for each element of the frame package.

Joel
 

Mike Labbe

Administrator
Forum Support Team
Forum Donor
Joined
Jun 25, 2002
Posts
18,236
From
Lincoln, RI
Business
Get The Picture
Most important to me is the ability to have all of my suppliers latest inventories available thru the programs online updates.
This might be a great starting point to narrow the search. Approximately 14 of the 24 claim to have centralized vendor updates, and a majority of the 14 are not updated regularly. (some are yearly) This is usually a feature found in the bigger packages, because they have the time and manpower (income/payroll) to deal with hundreds of vendors weekly - on their customer's behalf. The updates require manual conversion, because there are no standards for how the vendors submit their changes to the pos companies.

I don't need the bar coding or inventory control because we don't sell readymades or gift items. Our primary business is the art gallery and all of those sales are handled on a different system.
Ironically, we use barcoding but not for gallery or readymades... Just for mats and mouldings. It saves a lot of time at the design counter, and assures complete accuracy. A barcode should be adaptable to ANY pos system, even if it doesnt support them.(if making your own stickers) Most of them just put characters in the keyboard's buffer, as if they were typed. Ours is on a stand and always running. We just wave the mat or moulding under it and the price pops up. It's one of those things that isn't necessary, but you wonder how you lived without it afterwards. (like a cmc)

I hope you let us know the results of the search.

Wishing he was down in Atlanta with a nice cold beer,
Mike
 

soho

CGF, Certified Grumble Framer
Thread starter
Joined
Feb 1, 2003
Posts
103
From
West Palm Beach, Florida
Jerome,

We run our gallery business through Microsoft Access. My wife has programmed it to do everything we need from inventory to mailing lists to price cards and making coffee (not)!

It is an amazing program.

Joel
 

JFeig

SGF, Supreme Grumble Framer
Forum Donor
Joined
Oct 13, 1999
Posts
4,988
From
Oak Park, MI
As a former auditor, POS software bata site, and mid level computer literate individual you have virtually nothing invested in what you are now using. I would strongly suggest that you consider merging what you are doing with an existing POS system. Since the "frame order" portion is the most unique accounting modual, see what you like best and basic inventory, customer data will fall into place.


Frame Ready, which I use and recommend will have show specials as low as $500US. At least they had such a special last year.

Using multiple software systems at the same time can be rather confusing and is a potential area of making mistakes. This is not an area to be "penny wise and pound foolish"
 

Mike Labbe

Administrator
Forum Support Team
Forum Donor
Joined
Jun 25, 2002
Posts
18,236
From
Lincoln, RI
Business
Get The Picture
Most of the solutions should be able to import and export the existing customer database, so you don't have to re-enter everything. (but not the sales history)

I hope everyone has a great weekend
 

Tim Hayes.

SGF, Supreme Grumble Framer
Joined
Aug 31, 2001
Posts
1,077
From
Virginia
Joel,
Specialty Soft uses MS Access as its base platform. I dropped FullCalc after 5 years and bought Specialty about 6 months ago. It's great. Call them at 800 417 9248 press 1 for sales and ask for Olivia Shaw she is very helpful.
Tim Hayes
The Framing Guild
 

AWG

SGF, Supreme Grumble Framer
Joined
Jun 12, 2003
Posts
1,021
From
North Carolina - Picture Framing Capital of the Wo
Joel:
Ditto on Specialty. We currently use FullCalc, but used Specialty years ago in another environemnt. Olivia, Jeff and the entire crew down there are wonderul people. They actually run a beautiful shop in Pinehurst where they put the program through its paces.
We expect to switch to Specialty later his year.

Tony
 
Top