Why Dojo is “light years” ahead of the competition
For over 50 years, MACE stores have been a reassuring presence across Northern Ireland. Owned by Musgrave Retail Partners, there are around 100 stores across the country, operating at the heart of local communities.
Offering quality, convenience, and value, MACE stores deliver honestly priced daily essentials. Run as franchises, Chris O’Reilly and his business partner have five MACE stores across Belfast. One of those stores, an open-plan shop inside Belfast’s Royal Victoria Hospital, has recently had a new lease of life with the installation of Dojo payment solutions.
“I was having a moan about not having an integrated credit card and EPOS system, and one of our vendors told me that Dojo can do exactly that for us,” says Chris. “And I must admit I was my usual reticent self about it because we had a really good deal on price with our previous operator.
“However, Dojo presented a really compelling case. And because of their 30-day termination, it felt risk-free to give Dojo a trial and see whether or not the technology did what it needed to do.”
And they haven’t looked back.
“The Dojo terminal’s technology is light-years ahead of the devices we’d been using,” says Chris. “The 4G backup is excellent. Just everything about it is significantly better. It’s a slicker consumer experience in a fast-moving environment that allows us to break down queues faster.”
Saving almost £4,000 a year in shrinkage
What Chris wanted Dojo’s technology to do was increase the speed of transactions and reduce shrinkage caused by customers walking away before staff realised their card had been declined – and it was too late to do anything about it.
“Previously, we had a potentially suspect system in a fast environment which allowed for three types of human error – the transcription into the machine, the failure to acknowledge when a payment didn’t clear, and the decision to not confront the consumer if that happens,” says Chris. “It would take just 15 seconds for a transaction not to go through, to look up and, because we’re open-plan, that person has already gone and is out of sight.”
“So my staff were doing their job properly by getting people through the shop quickly and efficiently, but our system was failing to protect them, and to protect our business because the machines weren’t quick enough and weren’t fully integrated.”
Dojo’s machines are not only rapid – 50% quicker than the industry average – but they are also fully integrated with the tills. It means staff can’t use the till until the customer has cleared the transaction, giving employees more indicators if a card has been declined.
Since introducing Dojo last year, Chris says they have cut shrinkage by 75%. “We used to lose about £100 a week on shrinkage, and now it’s cut to £25.” Which, across a year, is a significant saving of almost £4,000.
Quality customer service
It’s fair to say Chris wasn’t happy with the customer service of its previous operator.
“The customer service experience we’ve had with them has been really difficult at times,” he says. “They are inefficient and they don’t deal with incidents quickly. It was a major hassle.”
One of the reasons Chris took on the Dojo trial was because its customer service is available 24/7, and based in the UK.
“I can’t tell you how great having a really helpful customer service line is, and Dojo really knocks it out of the park. It’s such a professional experience, and I’ve had colleagues thanking me that they don’t have to call our old provider any more! Good customer service really makes such a big difference.”
A smarter solution
“We use four of our lanes flat out at all times, and we use a fifth lane as a relief lane,” says Chris. “We’ve been able to share one card reader between the two of them – that’s been another godsend. It’s another wee clever idea to be able to network off two tills.”
By having fixed devices rather than hand-held, it has also reduced the damage that used to be done to previous devices when they were inevitably dropped – either by staff or customers. There were times when the store would be down to only one device and would have to shut lanes while spare devices were borrowed from other stores. With Dojo, that no longer happens.
Happy app experience
As well as enjoying seamless, fast end-of-day reconciliation and next-day card takings, Chris is a fan of the Dojo app. It allows him to view transactions in real-time, wherever he is. Previously, Chris would have to be onsite to check the performance and run an EPOS communication, which would take around 20 minutes.
“It’s really great to use,” says Chris. “I use it when I’m offsite to see how busy we are in the store, how much cash has gone in, and how the revenue looks throughout the day. Like everything else, it’s just really quick and really simple.”