Must-Have Software for Every Cannabis Entrepreneur

Successful cannabis dispensaries invest in software tools to help manage not only their inventory, but their people as well.

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Running a cannabis dispensary isn’t all fun and games. Like any other business, it takes focus, expertise, and dedication.

Of course, as evidenced by legal markets such as Colorado, the industry can be incredibly lucrative. However, it’s not like the movie, Field of Dreams. Just because you build a store, doesn’t mean people will come in droves. Yes, it’s an attractive product – but the market is getting increasingly competitive as the days go by.

The result? Dispensaries are diversifying their inventories in order to stay ahead of the pack and meet the overwhelming and wide-ranging demands of the market.

In fact, according to MarketWatch, the average US dispensary carried 94 different types of branded marijuana products in 2016. That number grew to 118 in 2017. Then, by January of 2018, a typical dispensary carried over 150 different branded products.

With the industry at a fever pitch and dispensaries dealing with unfathomable numbers of products and customers, streamlining operations has never been so important.

Here, we discuss some of the must-have software if you’re going to thrive and flourish in the cannabis business. Whether these tools are for inventory management, a point of sale system (POS), or workforce management, they’ll help turn your dispensary business into a true industry heavyweight.

Point of Sales Software

For the sake of maintaining a fluid (and profitable) cannabis retail operation, securing a top-notch POS software is of the utmost importance. Industry specific needs surrounding compliance, inventory control, and integrations mean most dispensaries opt for a POS designed specifically for the cannabis industry.

With Stripe and Square firmly of the question, here are just a few of the features and services you should make sure your POS software will excel in:

  • Design and usability
  • Control and clarity
  • Flexibility and cooperation
  • Support and response time
  • Cost and scale

In short, all of these attributes make for a cannabis POS software that’s versatile, affordable, easy to use, easy for your staff to learn, and conducive to quicker checkout times--ensuring more sales per hour.

Inventory Management Software

Seed-to-sale tracking is a reality of every market in which cannabis has been legalized medicinally and recreationally.

Successful dispensaries utilize inventory management software that sync with state-mandated tracking platforms such as METRC and MJ Freeway. Accurately accounting for every plant throughout the entire cultivation, extraction, and packaging process (from seed-to-sale) is mission-critical when it comes to staying compliant and operational.

Efficiently accounting for each plant clone, crop, batch, and SKU in your supply chain is a massive endeavor, and inventory management solutions come in all shapes and sizes. Many include a range of additional features, striving to be a full-suite solution for your canna-business. Like many software tools, buyers must weigh the costs and benefits of adopting an all-in-one solution that does everything just okay versus a best-in-class tool designed for a single challenges.

Inventory management software should be largely focused on efficiency to save time and money. Be sure to carefully evaluate all viable solutions. Asking for references from a few vendors you are considering is a great way to get insight into how others are liking the platform. Additionally, reviews and product feedback are readily available online to help you hone in on the right fit.

Workforce Management Software

Great cannabis professionals take a customer-centric approach to running their businesses. However, the best industry pros realize that investing in their own employees is the best way to delight their customers. Top-of-the-line inventory and hyper-efficient POS tools mean nothing without a team that clicks on all cylinders.

If your staff is in disarray, you’ll be fighting an uphill battle.

We get it. For a certain demographic, being part of a cannabis dispensary sounds like a dream job. Yet, according to Glassdoor, 40% of dispensary employees rate their jobs a one out of five.

You can’t afford disgruntled and unsatisfied employees representing your dispensary and brand day in and day out. You need an engaged group of ambitious individuals with a thirst for product knowledge and a passion for patient and customer care bolstering your storefront.

Building that culture starts with communication. As a business, you need a secure and reliable infrastructure to engage with your team. With a dispersed dispensary workforce, texts and emails won’t cut it anymore.

With Best in Grow’s workforce management software, you’ll have the support to cultivate a professional and connected dispensary operation with these tools:

  • Shift scheduling
  • Task management
  • Employee surveys
  • Centralized timelines and private messaging
  • POS integrations
  • Product knowledge training and support
  • Compliance updates
  • And a whole lot more

How Improved Workforce Management Will Help Your Staff’s Performance

92% of consumers follow the recommendation of the dispensary employee they interact with at the point of sale. The wrong product suggestion could lead to a bad experience, resulting in a lost customer and oftentimes poor online reviews.

Best in Grow’s software provides your team with instant access to product descriptions, frequently asked questions, and brand resources, meaning your team will have the confidence to point customers in the right direction.

Our POS integration takes your store’s sales results and provides robust analytics that can offer actionable insights and highlight top performers as well as employees who need additional training and support.

Finally, Best in Grow is built to mirror your organization exactly. Whether you have 2 locations or 20, the Best in Grow dispensary software suite can be customized with your specific permissions, branding, and org structure.

86% of compliance failures are a result of a lack of timely information; developing a work culture of accountability and transparency is your best possible strategy to mitigate risk.

Now What?

Inventory management and point of sales are certainly important for the efficiency of your cannabis retail dispensary.

However, we’ve found that more often than not, dispensary owners get caught up in the machinations and technologies involved in running the logistics of the business and overlook the immense value of a workforce aligned behind a single mission and vision.

With workforce management software, you’ll strengthen the most important part of your operation: your team. Instead of feeling like your store is simply just a place to turn up to work and earn a paycheck, your staff will become fully immersed in your business, meaning lower turnover, higher average ticket prices, and greater customer loyalty.

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