Until 2011, point-of-sale video auditing pioneer Agilence, Inc., was a software company in need of hardware relief. The appliances on which it delivers its Hawkeye 20/20 solution for retail loss prevention at the checkout counter were purchased off-the-shelf as white boxes then loaded and shipped by Agilence personnel. That DIY strategy created complications ranging from hardware-software compatibility problems to lengthy configuration cycles that hindered timely fulfillment of large orders.
We’re a software company, not a hardware company. We needed to get out of the business of building and shipping hardware, but we have complex needs, and we needed a manufacturer that could do more than just install our encoder card in a box.
Derek Rodner, Vice President of Product Strategy
Complete appliance customization
No in-house integration needed
Component consistency from unit to unit
Automated configuration for scalability
4 hours of configuration time saved per unit
Unnecessary retesting time eliminated
Ability to process large orders quickly
Branding, logistics and return services
50% reduction in shipping costs
Agilence’s Hawkeye solution reduces retail losses caused by cashier theft, employee procedural errors, and operational problems such as improperly applied discounts and packaging-related product scanning mistakes at the point of sale (POS).
Agilence supplies the complete Hawkeye package on pre-loaded and pre-tested appliances that are specifically configured for each retailer’s POS platform, transaction volume and back-end technology infrastructure. But the company’s original strategy of handling hardware duties in-house added too much overhead and too many inefficiencies.
“We bought off-the-shelf boxes from different vendors, but components changed from vendor to vendor and even on different shipments from the same vendor. Every time a shipment came in with a different motherboard or memory, we had to retest and recalibrate our software to avoid performance problems,” said Derek Rodner, Agilence Vice President of Product Strategy. “We needed a stable hardware environment that could be locked down, replicated for every order, and changed only when components were sunsetted or upgraded.”
MBX engineered a custom platform to optimize Agilence’s application and minimize system costs. MBX handles all areas of building and shipping systems, including:
- Modifying the build to match the end customer’s environment, with variables including the number of hard drives, the presence or absence of video encoder cards depending on the type of camera in each store, and POS parsers.
- Automating image processing and multi-unit configuration to accelerate order fulfillment, saving at least four hours of build time per box.
- Running an inventory management program under which assembled but unconfigured units are put into stock in an MBX warehouse and imaged as new orders are received.
- Sourcing, stocking and kitting accessories for shipment with each unit, including a keyboard, mouse, monitor, cables, UPS and surge protector.
With MBX, Agilence has not only freed itself of all hardware responsibilities and slashed shipping costs in half, but also gained the critical ability to fulfill large orders in a much shorter timeframe.