Tanning and computer technology are inseparable. Long-time tanners can remember handing their punch cards to the salon attendent who would then direct them to an open room. Once in the room and ready, the tanner would start the bed. While the electronics and circuitry of tanning beds haven’t changed much in fifty years, how we integrate with the beds certainly has.
Punch cards have been replaced with computer-stored customer databases that record the cutomer’s tanning sessions, contact information, and skin type. Using computer technology, salons can better assemble the appropriate tanning package for their customers. This database is likely linked to a point-of-sale (or POS) system, also computer driven, which can streamline payments. Further connecting tanning with computer technology is taking these databases and POS systems and integrating them with bed-control software. Essentially, customers can no longer start a bed without the system making a series of checks. This allows salons to more effectively comply with the 24-hour tanning regulation as well as cuts down on unruly employees giving away tans.
While the link between tanning and computer technology has its advantages, it comes at a price. The more parts used in a machine, the more failure becomes likely…the same holds true with computer technology and systems. Often the interface between the POS and bed-control software is Windows- and internet-based, and we’re all too familiar with the hassles of unwanted Windows updates and slow or dropped internet.
At Illuminations 24/7, we work hard keeping these systems running. Admittedly, we are not computer experts. Our customers know that at times failures occur, and we appreciate your patience. One of the helpful features we enjoy with all of this modern computer and internet technology is the “Bed Availability” page on our website. As you are reading this post, you are likely aware of it, but if not, check it out. The page is a real-time shot of the bed queue. So if you’re planning a quick trip in to tan and want to see if beds are open, click on the page.
Hope to see you in soon!