[IT News] 2012 Technology Enhancement Plans

by Glen B. on February 28, 2012

Wow, where did 2011 go? We’ve been working extremely hard the past year to enhance the web site as well as streamline more internal processes. 2011 was a terrific business year thanks to all of our great customers. We have a bunch of new tech goodies planned for 2012. Periodically check the blog for updates. With our continued growth we’ve been constantly adding new capacity in all aspects of the business. I will briefly go over some of these additions and enhancements. More details will be available as each enhancement goes live. If you haven’t seen the recent warehouse addition and building face lift then take a moment to check out Our New Look & Warehouse Space.

Fiber, it’s not just for breakfast. We need to get more bandwidth for our customers and our operations so we’re getting a fiber ‘backbone’ connection from AT&T very soon. The main line has been buried and we are currently awaiting a site install and service cut. We will be able to service a lot more web shoppers as well as consume and serve more cloud content with less latency.

Express checkout is now available through the checkout system. Update your express checkout profile under MyAccount and express checkout will use those options automatically and skip steps. The express checkout profile lets you choose payment and shipping options. If you select to always pay by net terms then you will only need to fill out a PO number during checkout. If you select to always pay with a credit card from your card wallet then you only need to enter the CVV2 code from the back of the card during checkout. Shipping address, shipping method and shipping payment method options are available for all of the shipping groups, including LTL/freight. Reduce the time it takes to place a web order by updating your express profile. A mobile version of the express checkout function will soon be available on our mobile site. You will be able to submit orders on your mobile device using your login and a PO number or CVV2 code. Saved shopping carts will be available as well for on-the-go quick ordering on your mobile device.

SMS/Text messaging has become quite popular with audiences on-the-go. We have implemented some preliminary services to gauge SMS adoption rate by our customers. If you <3 txt then add your mobile number to your MyAccount profile and turn on SMS shipment notifications right now. Once your mobile number is in MyAccount, you can also text any 6-digit All-Spec order number to 910.550.2220. You will get your current order status back as a reply. Or, text "track" <space> and your order number to get the last tracking scan/activity.

Don’t have a smart phone or just do not like texting at all? We are now offering 24-hour order status and tracking information via our new voice response system. You’ll just need the 6-digit All-Spec order number and the ship-to zip code to hear status and tracking information at any time of the day from any touch-tone phone. Call 1-877-404-6165 now! If you experience any issues or have any suggestions then please let us know. [E-Mail TechSupport]

Where is my order?! We get this question a lot and are designing solutions to get answers to you sooner. Changes in the estimated shipping date for back-orders, direct ship, custom and non-stock items could be automatically sent to you via SMS, voice, and/or e-mail. This is a complex solution when you consider the multitude and disparity of shipping information sources we deal with. We currently do not see a reason why this solution can’t be built and deployed but we are still limited by the manufacturer’s ability and willingness to provide accurate and timely information to us. In cases where we can’t get an answer from the manufacturer we will be forced to take an educated guess at the shipping date. The estimated shipping date will change when the manufacturer provides more or different information. Regardless of the reason for the product hold-up, our plan is to have a notification service in place that will automatically notify you when the shipping date changes for an item.

Glen Batchelor
CIO/CTO
All-Spec Industries

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