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Sherry-Lehmanns POS architecture, which runs on a Microsoft Corp. SQL Server 2000 and 2003 database backbone, has been in place for nearly two years. The system was constructed with close assistance from The Lloyd Group Inc., a systems integrator and professional services provider that handles all the wine retailers on-site help desk, patching, remote support, backup and monitoring operations, said Yuval Meron, operational accounts manager for The Lloyd Group, also based in New York.
Other servers in deployment for the retail vendor running SQL Server include one that features all inventory stored in the Brooklyn warehouse and one running Microsoft Great Plains software for accounting and financial duties.
Sherry-Lehmanns POS interfaces directly with shipping and delivery applications from FedEx Corp. and DHL Express. But the key component enabling Sherry-Lehmanns comfort level with bolstered data-integrity assurance is Veritas Software Corp.s Backup Exec product.
"For Sherry-Lehmann, that was all very crucial stuff. Even before they put in their POS, they were using [Microsofts] Exchange, and they needed to back up their e-mail boxes—that was critical to them," said Meron. In addition, The Lloyd Group centralized backup management for the wine merchant by reducing the number of servers with separate tape drives running Backup Exec to a single tape drive instance of the software.
The Lloyd Group is examining a variety of projects to help prepare the wine merchant for disaster recovery based on an off-site set of servers ticketed to deploy Veritas replication software technology.
According to Meron, Sherry-Lehmanns willingness to enable its backup system and data management capabilities to serve all its customers with the same focused effort level is the perfect tonic to keep sales brisk within the fast-paced sales arena.
"Their business grows so much, and theyve adapted to technologies very quickly, and I think theyve benefited greatly from it," said Meron. "With the Internet and doing their orders online, I cant imagine what they did before that, considering how much business they do."
Sherry-Lehmanns 7,000-item wine inventory originates in many countries around the world. The bottles are sent to the wine vendor in a host of packages—from solid wood to cases to pallets—and are often shipped to a customer less than an hour after a sale.
From a database standpoint, Gilmer said that Sherry-Lehmann is learning how to better gather and protect customer data. That, in turn, will allow the wine merchant to use that data in everything from purchase strategies and inventory screen improvements to better preparing its 125-page catalog, which is distributed five times per year.
"We deliver the same day in New York, so its not a surprise to get an order on our Web site at 11 a.m. for a case of champagne for a 5 p.m. party in downtown Manhattan," said Gilmer. "Our customers are built on expectation, and theres experience built on the fact they know were going to get it there. You cant be busy worrying about backups or data protection."
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