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TOPIC: Switching to RTS

Switching to RTS 14 Aug 2002 14:31 #23425

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(Ready Theatre Systems) RTS Report

We have installed an all-new RTS system with the Partner terminals at the Rialto this week. We talked to Greg Borr at RTS last year at ShoWest. We liked his system and decided we would buy it at some point in the future. The decision was made a couple of months ago and we placed the order one month ago.

At our theatre we have an enthusiastic assistant manager named Josh who took charge of the entire set-up and ordering of the system. He has had the demo program on his personal laptop for a couple of months.

We made a list of all of our tickets and concession items and their prices. We sent to list to RTS and they set up our individual machines with the appropriate buttons. We purchased 2 Box Office and 3 Concession terminals. They are identical except for the programming. We also got the Finger Print Readers so that is how the staff clocks in and out and logs on and off a terminal.

In conjunction with the new RTS systems we purchased a new Dell computer with Windows 2000 to use in the back office. First Josh spent 3 days setting up the Dell. We needed to get it on-line, put in three software programs for Payroll, Web Design, and get it talking to our printer. Getting to hook to our GCC Network Printer was the hardest part. GCC works seamlessly with MAC but it takes a system administrator with a degree from MIT to hook it up to a PC.

Then Josh spent three or four days getting the terminals set up. He had to get our staff in the system and capture their fingerprints. He also had to network the terminals together and to the Dell. This was not as hard as the GCC printer.

Thursday night we replaced our old computer box station two with the new RTS Terminal. For one show we sold using the new terminal. It was seamless. The staff member doing the selling had no problems at all. Then after closing Thursday, Josh took out all the old computers and cash registers and put in the new system.

We had a manager training session Friday morning and away we went.

The staff had no problems with the new system. The managers had only a few, which is a miracle for a new system.
  • Our first problem was that when you are setting up showtimes for two films in the same auditorium, the computer priorities them so they can flip. Josh put the wrong showtimes with the wrong movies because they had probably flipped on him.
  • This morning we moved all the films around due to their business volume. Some of the ticket selling rules changed. I was able to change them back without coaching from Josh. (The system is intuitive.)
  • We were showing the key to open the cash drawers to the staff and one of them pushed it again after the drawer was open. So the drawer wouldn’t latch closed. We had to re-boot the system to get the drawer to latch.
  • It seems that with our 40’ counter height that the screen on the Partner terminals will not tilt down sufficiently for our shorter employees. So now all of the terminals are propped up in the back using BevanPoos.
  • Ky thinks that the reports that are printed by RTS aren’t as attractive as our old ones. I looked at them and could read what they said, so I don’t care.
  • I think that the power supplies on the Partner terminals are way too noisy. That was my first impression and I’m sticking to it. These are by far the noisiest computers I have ever heard. It’s not really a problem during operation. But it is all I hear when I open up in the morning.
  • Our previous box office report was 6 pages long each day. With RTS it is only one page.
  • With the exception of the tilt issue, the staff loves the new system. It is very easy to use.
  • Everyone has gotten hip to the clocking in and out procedure.
  • Ky would like to change the orientation of the tickets so that the printing goes the same way as the logo screened into the background on our ticket stock. (Translation, he want’s landscape orientation rather than portrait orientation and to flip the customer and theatre halves of the ticket because that’s the way our old system, Box Office Pro, worked and we are all used to tearing tickets based on the old orientation. Of course we are adaptable, so maybe we’ll get used to it.)
RTS is going to get 100 blank tickets from us to try to reorient the ticket for us. On Tuesday, Josh was able to input the next week schedule in to RTS so now that is one less thing to do Thursday night at 11:00 PM.

So all in all this was a very smooth easy transition for the staff. We would do it again and if we get a new theatre we will.


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Re: Switching to RTS 14 Aug 2002 20:06 #23426

I just wanted to ask one thing about the RTS system:

When I tried the demo, I tried booking showtimes for one week. I did one day and realized I had to do the whole entering for every day. What's the shortcut for inserting an entire week?

Andrew

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Re: Switching to RTS 15 Aug 2002 08:04 #23427

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Andrew,
There is a copy button just above the schedule view, click this, by holding down the left mouse button highlight the day or days you would like to copy to and then click the copy button at the lower left of the box. This will copy the current schedule to the selected date range.

Greg Borr
RTS
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Re: Switching to RTS 15 Aug 2002 13:03 #23428

Thanks Greg.



"Would you like fries with that?"
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Re: Switching to RTS 15 Aug 2002 17:23 #23429

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Large, does the staff scheduler really work? I mean or does it just cause more work going through and checking it all. We have the demo version and I tried to use it. I entered all the employees info in and stuff and then hit shedule and it kicks me out. I'm guessing it's because its a demo.
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Re: Switching to RTS 15 Aug 2002 20:25 #23430

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We aren't currently using the Staff Scheduler feature. We are using the Time Clock and it is working well.

We may try the Staff Scheduler at sometime in the future.

We also haven't started using the Inventory Control. We may also start using that feature in the future.

The idea was to start with features that we are familiar with and comfortable with. We will try more features later. We changed the system over in one day so we are still learning.

The Time Clock worked very well for the payroll this week.
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Re: Switching to RTS 16 Aug 2002 08:34 #23431

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Mill,

Staff Scheduler works just fine, demo version will not auto-generate a schedule.

If you would like to demo everything "live" send me an e-mail and I'll get you a temp code.

Greg Borr
RTS
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Re: Switching to RTS 16 Aug 2002 17:42 #23432

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Greg,
Did I just read that you installed all of Large's concession items in for him..?
and all I want is to get that damn beer out of the menu. Boy I see where I stand.
I am going to hold you to a beer at showeast, even if it comes free.
Hmm
I have been echoing him for three years now, you guys have a great affordable product.
lance
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Re: Switching to RTS 16 Aug 2002 19:23 #23433

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Lance,

I know your joking but Greg has never been to my theatre. Josh one of my employees installed the system.

We had to pay some company to run Cat5 wire to every office and to every selling station and install a switch.

Then it was just a matter of networking the machines together and setting them in the proper place.

We will all punish Greg for a beer at ShoWest.

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Re: Switching to RTS 16 Aug 2002 21:12 #23434

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large,
Yep...just joking....I have had Greg and Rob's Rts for almost two years and really like the simplicity and ease of use. You really should try the mag card feature. I have used them as gift cards and it is incredible how much money accumulates in the bank from people buying them and not using them.....
They are so easy to use and we sell a ton of them. You always know just what your exposure is at any one time. Something that I never knew with paper gift certificates.
And it seems you like the reports.....it aint got to be pretty to be useful ha

One thing I have done is actually scanned pictures of the kids and put them on the touch screen just to screw with them a bit, especially if one of them likes a certain candy and I see it in the discount report.
May as well have fun with it too
lance

[This message has been edited by LanceC (edited August 17, 2002).]
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Re: Switching to RTS 19 Aug 2002 03:04 #23435

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LanceC, about the Mag Gift Cards... How much do "blank" ones cost? Do you charge anything for the card the first time they buy them, or do you just eat the cost of the card? I don't know the size of your outfit, but do you have your logo and theatre info on the card? If so, is it with a sticker, or is it part of the card?

We have RTS at the box only, but if I went with the gift cards, I would think I would have to install RTS at the concession as well.

Overall, have you found them to be alot more profitable than paper girt certs, or just better for tracking purposes?
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Re: Switching to RTS 19 Aug 2002 16:17 #23436

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Bird,
The plastic cards are reusable and are available through www.Plasticprinters.com
I think if you go to the site you can get a quote online. If my memory serves me they were over 50 cents each. I also used the printers to print me plastic passes in a very different color so they could not be confused. The passes do not have a mag stripe on the back. Each card that has a mag stripe also has a serial number printed on the back so if the stripe was damaged we can key the number in. I have a small three screen in rural Upstate NY. Only competition is 25 miles each way. I installed them in October the first year I had RTS and by Christmas had sold 10 thousand bucks worth. Of course after christmas they started to be redeemed quickly but as of right now I continually have in excess of 9 thousand in the bank working for me. Not a bad interest free loan in an emergency. They make a great kids birthday present or any present for that matter but I do use them at both concession as well as box. I made a rule that no card could be purchased for less than 5 dollars. The guys at RTS have a default set that no card can be keyed in for more than 50 bucks at one time. You can keep adding but only in a max of 50 bucks. I have had people from all over the country call and had me send parents cards. I had one lady figure out what a movie a week, a small popcorn and small drink a week would cost and send a card for that much to her mom. The staff can easily check the balance at any station.
Greg should step in here, I think he mentioned a theatre he knows of that has like 30 grand in the bank all the time. So it works great for me and it is already in the program. The printers will put any logo on you want.
whew too winded I guess. hope this helps
lance
oh,
they are way cooler than paper and they track easily. You look up lost cards, generate mailing if you keep a sales log, and know your exposure quickly so you can see where you stand. The printed cards last forever.

[This message has been edited by LanceC (edited August 19, 2002).]
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Re: Switching to RTS 20 Aug 2002 11:00 #23437

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What Lance said....

We have a 6 plex that runs between 25K and 35K balance in the bank at all times, we market the heck out of the cards at each of our locations.

The cards can also be used for a loyalty programs, we have a customer that accumulates points based on purchases and then redeems points for "monthly specials" could be a theatre promotional item, large popcorn, etc. We have customers that offer 10% off of all concessions purchased with a Movie Card. The cards can also be used for internet ticketing purchases.
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Re: Switching to RTS 21 Aug 2002 01:47 #23438

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I went and got a quote form that site.
It said that there was a $99 a month charge as well. Is that true and what is that for??

The other question I had is of that $10,000 you made in gift certificate sales, how many gift cards were that. What is a reasonable quantity to order? I know how many paper GC's I order but with the card several gc's are combined into one.

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Re: Switching to RTS 21 Aug 2002 05:49 #23439

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I think we need to have a meeting...all of us RTS users at a centrally located spot somewhere warm. We can have a seminar on all the really cool things that this program will do and how to get the most out of it.
Of course Greg would buy the beer....
wait...then maybe the license would go up...beer not a good idea
seminar is
lance
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