Cask scanning is a hot topic right now, but there are many ways to approach this – and different types of suppliers, not all of whom will be advisable partners for the maturing spirit sector. These questions may help you find the cask scanning supplier that is right for you.
1. Do you understand our industry?
Does your proposed supplier really know the industry? There’s a big difference between scanning casks of maturing spirit and, say, stock on a supermarket shelf. We would always advise you to look for a supplier that truly understands the countless specific requirements that come with the storage of maturing spirit – and for that you invariably need an organisation that specialises in this sector.
2. Are you here for the long run?
Is your proposed supplier committed to the maturing spirit sector? Small development houses may be unable to assure you of their long-term presence, while large generic scanning suppliers may shift strategy and choose to focus on other sectors.
Selecting a stable and established supplier that specialises in the maturing spirit sector represents a safer long-term investment in terms of guarding against obsolescence and subsequent system replacement costs.
The DRAMS system has been here since 1974; always with the sole purpose of managing the movement and storage of maturing spirit inventory. DRAMS is developed by Trapeze Group, which is part of Volaris, which offers long-term financial stability.
3. How do you innovate?
We believe innovation is best achieved through collaboration with the customers who use our systems on a daily basis. This is why we choose to fund development via a combination of internal investment and customer-funded projects – and with a significant number of clients we are able to take on board a large number of ideas that can be developed for the benefit of all.
This approach has proven successful with the core DRAMS product for many years, and DRAMScan will continue along the same path; expanding its functionality directly in line with customer requirements, with new features rolled into future releases for all clients to use.
4. Can you offer us the service and reliability we need?
As scanning solutions become more ingrained in daily operations, dependence upon them will only increase. You therefore require a system that is reliable, and a supplier with the infrastructure and expertise to resolve any issues that may occur.
We can offer reassurance here because DRAMScan is developed and supported by the same experienced team that has been successfully servicing DRAMS customers for many years. And because DRAMScan is fully integrated within the core DRAMS product there are no concerns over compatibility or accuracy of any data transferred between different supplier systems.
5. How will you ensure system longevity?
One of the key considerations of a scanning solution is the hardware you choose to adopt. After all, intrinsically safe scanners can cost thousands of pounds per device. With the trends in mobile Operating Systems proving difficult to predict, it is critical that you don’t end up with a scanner that is dependent on an Operating System with no long-term future.
However, you can protect yourself against these dangers by adopting a scanning solution that will run on any Operating System. We chose to develop DRAMScan as a web application for this reason –so that it will be compatible with any scanner that can run a suitable browser, ensuring total compatibility both with existing scanners – and also those developed in the future.
This subject is discussed in more depth in our guide to scanning hardware.