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Devices, devices everywhere – the growing challenge of terminal management

Estate Management

As merchants grow in size, the number of devices needed to power payments across the enterprise inevitably increases. And, with the growth of omni-channel retailing, the store is fast becoming home to an array of different payment device types, as merchants strive to meet the demand for customer service innovation.

So, with ePos machines, Chip and PIN terminals, mPos capabilities, in store-tablets, kiosks and warehouse hardware to keep track of, how do today’s tech-savvy merchants efficiently manage their payments assets, while also meeting their reporting and compliance obligations?

Flexibility and efficiency – can you have both?

Many leading card terminal providers and payment processors offer solutions to help merchants manage their equipment– to track and manage terminals, diagnose technical problems, and support performance reporting. That’s great - but what about a merchant that maintains terminal devices from different suppliers, or uses different payment processors to meet the individual needs of each business site or initiative? Not so straightforward.

The obvious choices are either to report this information manually, use multiple management tools, or build an in-house solution – and these options can be resource-hungry, difficult to maintain, and expensive. With compliance burdens around the ‘chain of custody’ and the increased size, complexity and mobility of devices, these methods often fall short, causing many merchants to be in remediation of their record-keeping systems. Maintaining an audit trail and being able to prove ‘chain of custody’ over the entire estate ensures a securely managed device network. Lack of a complete estate management solution could therefore impact a merchant’s PCI scope reduction for their stores, leading to increased compliance costs.

One tool to rule them all

The most efficient solution for managing devices across a retail enterprise has to be a device-agnostic approach – one that gives flexibility, control and choice back to merchants. An estate management tool that supports multiple device types and terminal manufacturers empowers retailers to easily monitor, manage and report on any device, anytime and anywhere. Merchants are no longer hindered by multiple on- and off-line terminal management tools for internal reporting and external compliance demands.

As omni-channel demands rise and merchants seek to streamline processes and improve visibility and control, a single application that helps them view, track and manage all their devices in one place can create significant efficiencies, leaving internal teams free to concentrate on core business activities.

ACI recently introduced the ACI Estate Management solution, to assist merchants in managing the growing numbers and types of payments devices. This comprehensive, device-agnostic solution allows retailers to track and report on any device within their organization, while taking advantage of the wide range of integration and configuration options available.