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Monitor Core – at the heart of everything we do

In this weeks blog we explain each core element of the solution to give you a better understanding of their purpose and how they work together. These components relate to the set-up, configuration and administration of the system but there are also user-centric components that allow users to interact with the Monitor solution.

The Monitor solution comprises of a number of elements – here we will explain the purpose of the core modules. These components mostly relate to the set-up, configuration and administration of the system but there are also user-centric components that allow users to interact with the Monitor solution.
The solution is based around a SQL backend database that contains settings, transactions, and user account details.
Supervisor Administrator
The Administrator application allows for the management of the system. Typically used during set-up, it allows operators to quickly view user details, transactions, and make changes to settings such as product pricing.
The administrator software provides different tiers of permissions for operator groups, restricting access where required.
It can manage everything from individual user accounts, shared cost centres, products and prices as well as providing access to the print management and AD synchronization components.
Having everything in one place negates the need to switch between applications and the interface can be customized to assign “friendly” names to certain parts of the database – such as referring to the list of Primary Accounts as “Users” and Secondary Accounts as “Departments”.
Web Admin Essentials (WAE)
For day-to-day administration, Web Admin Essentials provides simple management of accounts to operators.
WAE has been designed to provide a web-based interface (accessible from any PC) to carry out simple account management – including viewing transaction history, providing refunds, or adding credit to accounts.
Again, much like Administrator, different access levels can be defined to provide limited features – such as the ability to only view account details without making changes.
The web-based MyMonitor package gives users a means to manage their own account. It is used to view transaction history or apply credits to their account balance. Where multiple purses are in use (for example, a user may have a separate account for purchasing food & drink) the facility exists to transfer money between accounts where permissible.
The management of accounts can also be delegated to a parent or guardian, and control over the accounts can be limited in various aspects – for example the crediting of accounts can be permitted without exposing the statement of expenditure.
MyMonitor also gives the user facilities to block their account in the event of the loss of a card – providing a self-service mechanism, even out-of-hours.
Insight Reports
The Insight reporting package is another web-based component of the system, which allows users to quickly produce reports relating to various aspects of the system – everything from a transaction statement to a summary of purchases, or even to find out how much money is held in user accounts at any one time.
Reports can be viewed on-screen, or saved in to a variety of formats thanks to the powerful Crystal Reports engine that provides the presentation of data.
If a specific report format is required then custom templates are provided, and reports can be scheduled to run automatically – so the information is presented in to your mailbox without even thinking about it.
The facility also exists for extracting information from the database via the Export tool – this is ideal for producing reports in a very specific format where information may need to be imported in to a 3rd-party system or dropped in to an existing spreadsheet.
Monitor Express
Express is another user-centric component, which allows for self-service purchases and account management from a kiosk.
The touchscreen interface provides the facility to make purchases and negates the need for taking payment at the counter, allowing for faster service and the pre-allocation of goods which can be collected upon presentation of receipt.
The Express software also allows credits to be applied to accounts – either with cash or a credit/debit card via Chip&Pin payment.
You can also leverage more from your investment by specifying custom applications to run on the Kiosk – such as a web browser for accessing intranet pages or your own applications.
Finally, Express can be used to set-up temporary accounts. This is ideal in an environment where the public may wish to share resources with your regular users. A ticket can be printed with a unique PIN that can be used to carry out transactions without the need to create an account and then apply credit – keeping cash handling to a minimum but not alienating those who are not cardholders.
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