Wednesday, August 28, 2019

What other Microsoft RMS/HQ Users are doing for RMS End of Life

NOTE: I am keeping this updated as we move through 2020 as best I can

As summer 2019 quickly comes to a close, more and more retailers are contacting me for advice specific to the Microsoft Dynamics RMS / HQ point of sale software and the upcoming end of extended support dates.

Many of you have even paid my travel expenses so I could come onsite to advise/consult/meet in person!

A summery of retailers that I've had in person or phone conversations with broken down by whether HQ is being used or not.

Not Using HQ (approx 458 single location stores that I have spoken with):
  • 115 of you have upgraded to Retail Management Hero or Cloud Retailer
  • 48 of you have replaced RMS with a different POS system (NCR CounterPoint SQL, Bindo, ShopKeep, LightSpeed, LiquorPOS, Netsuite, Epicore, Vend, and Clover appear to be the most popular)
  • 122 of you have moved to stand alone payment terminals and will stick with that for the next 2+ years
  • 139 of you have put in Card Defender and will stick with that for the next 2+ years 
  • The remaining retailers have put in other payment terminal solutions as provided by your merchant services company (eg. Shift 4) or have not communicated back to me what your plans are
Using HQ (approx 53 chains that I have met/spoken with over the last 24 months):
  1. 3 location chain: staying on RMS for now - will start exploring options in late 2019
  2. 4 location chain: staying on RMS for now but will replace by Oct 2019. Looking at ERP or POS with built in accounting
  3. 8 location chain: still on RMS for now. Looking at options but nothing shared back to me.
  4. 4 location chain: staying on RMS and no plans to replace at this time
  5. 5 location chain: put in Card Defender. Will keep using RMS for another 2+ years
  6. 3 location chain: replaced RMS/HQ with SalesPad as they use Dynamics GP for accounting
  7. 18 location chain: started replacing RMS/HQ with Netsuite
  8. 9 location chain: started replacing RMS/HQ with Netsuite
  9. 50 location chain: replaced RMS and HQ with NCR CounterPoint 
  10. 2 location chain: staying on RMS for another 2+ years
  11. 38 location chain: staying on RMS for now - will evaluate replacement options in 2019 or 2020
  12. 8 location chain: staying on RMS for now - will evaluate replacement options in 2019 or 2020
  13. 5 location chain: staying on RMS for now - will evaluate replacement options in 2019 or 2020
  14. 4 location chain: staying on RMS for now - will evaluate replacement options in 2019 or 2020
  15. 14 location chain: staying on RMS for now - will evaluate replacement options in 2019 or 2020
  16. 18 location chain: just starting to evaluate options as of late 2018
  17. 3 location chain: staying on RMS for now - will evaluate replacement options in 2019 or 2020
  18. 6 location chain: Put in Cloud Retailer with Card Defender at all locations.
  19. 297 location franchise (technically not using HQ) - put in Card Defender, likely moving to Epicore in 2020 or 2021
  20. 2 location chain: staying RMS for the time being - looking at Card Defender and updating some hardware
  21. 3 location chain: Replacing RMS/HQ with Cloud Retailer and Card Defender
  22. 7 location chain: staying on RMS/HQ for now but recently implemented Card Defender at all locations
  23. 5 location chain: initiated process to start putting in Netsuite per a franchise agreement.
  24. 16 location chain: just starting the process to look at RMS/HQ replacement options
  25. 2 location chain: replaced RMS with Retail Management Hero
  26. 2 location chain: moving to Cloud Retailer now for deployment in late summer 2019
  27. 16 location chain: moving to Cloud Retailer now for deployment in late 2019
  28. 34 location chain: exploring options like Cloud Retailer for deployment in 2019 or 2020
  29. 18 location chain: exploring options via an RFI to replace RMS/HQ in late 2020
  30. 8 location chain: put out an RFI in 1/2019 for RMS/HQ replacement options and still evaluating as of 8/2019.
  31. 40 location chain in Oregon: just now starting to look at RMS replacement options - very interested in Retail Management Hero but see no replacement for HQ yet if using RMH and the Retail Management Hero discounts end April 2020.
  32. 45 location chain in Illinois: just now starting to look at RMS replacement options - very interested in Retail Management Hero but see no replacement for HQ yet if using RMH and the Retail Management Hero discounts end April 2020.
  33. 50 location chain in Ohio: Renewing their maintenance program for RMS/HQ support with RITE. Very honestly told me that there is nothing on the market that matches their size of retail operation that isn't super expensive. They are looking at the Cloud Retailer option as well.
  34. 19 location chain in California: just starting their search for RMS replacement options.
  35. 3 location chain in Texas: using the DRS Bike Interface for RMS - holding out for RMH Central to be released soon.
  36. 5 location chain in Washington State: Moving from RMS/HQ to Cloud Retailer
  37. 19 location chain in Washington State and Alaska: awaiting an appointment with me to discuss further.
  38. 12 location chain in Oregon: testing out In Store POS in 3 locations as a potential RMS/HQ replacement
  39. 2 location chain in California: just starting the search - expressed some interest in Cloud Retailer
  40. 2 Location chain in Arkansas: just starting the search - looking at Cloud  Retailer and RMH for now.
  41. 4 location chain in South Dakota: just starting to look at RMS replacement options
  42. 5 location chain in Alaska: replaced RMS/HQ with Celerant
  43. 7 location chain in Canada: looking at options now
  44. 4 location chain in AZ: looking at options like Cloud Retailer now
  45. 39 location chain across the US: replaced RMS/HQ with RMH and RMH Central (and hate it - see their review here: https://www.softwareadvice.com/retail/retail-management-hero-profile/
  46. 3 location chain in the NE US: Didn't know that RMS was End of Life - not sure what they will be doing
  47. 2 location chain in Alaska: hanging on to RMS and HQ for the time being due to negative reviews of RMH Central
  48. 2 location chain in Alaska: starting the search for an RMS replacement to put in late 2020. Is looking at Cloud Retailer.
I have 5 other chains (with 3 to 5 stores each) that I've spoken with but have not been keeping me updated on their plans.

(Disclaimer: Microsoft RMS will not magically stop working come July of 2020 or July of 2021 but it will become more difficult to support over time as technology changes. I will continue to support RMS past July 2021 but this will not be indefinite).

RMS Issues/Motivation to Change
  1. End of support for Windows 7
  2. End of support for Microsoft RMS
  3. Pressure / additional fees from merchant services provider for using an outdated POS system
  4. End of Retail Management Hero (RMH) licence discounts for Microsoft RMS users
  5. Lack of peripheral hardware support
  6. Not able to re-activate license keys
  7. Fee's being charged by merchant services provider for using "retired" POS software
  8. Fee's being charged by merchant services provider for not paying RMS maintenance ("BRAP")
  9. Various integrations no longer working
  10. Issues with Windows 10
  11. Current Microsoft RMS Partner/VAR/Dealer/Reseller ending support for RMS and HQ.
Footnote on RMS Add-ons:
Some of you rely on various RMS add-on's like PoolCorp, ShipRush or the bike store and service modules from DRS for RMS. At this time, you can't move away from RMS without losing these add-on's. Initial indications are that many of these add-on's will work with some of the RMS replacement programs as we get closer to 2020 and 2021 (subject to change of course).

If you would like to have an in-person or phone conversation about the future of the Microsoft Dynamics RMS point of sale software and advice specific to your retail business, please contact me at 208-340-5632 or kevinantosh@gmail.com.

Please do share this post/site with other retailers who are using RMS / HQ as well.

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