I worked for Target from 1986 to 88. You are correct in your 6 digit sku idea. I ran a number of garden centers in So. Cal. and some of those skus are still stuck in my head. For instance 844159 was a 1 gallon color plant. The first two numbers 84 was for the garden center. Dept. 84. The third digit was the class. From what I remember, departments were divided into classes. Class 4 for was for live goods. And the last 3 digits were the item number. In this case 159 was 1 gallon asst. color plants. Some other examples were 847100 and 847200, which were cow manure. Class 7 was bagged goods and 100 was 1 cu.ft. bags and 200 was 2 cu.ft. bags.thatjpwing wrote: ↑21 Jul 2020 13:38In the early 1990s Target was indeed running IBM 4683 registers but not with IBM’s General Sales Application but a third party software package. I’m still trying to determine if they contracted that out or if they developed the software in house. The Target receipts had two-digit line numbers but did not include the UPC code of the item, but instead a six-digit SKU. Because I don’t have a lot of familiarity with Target before the early 2000s, I don’t know if Target previously used the two digit department/four digit SKU system before then (like Zayre and Hills did) or if they always just had six digit SKU/item numbers. I’m hoping to find more information on that in the coming months.Super S wrote: ↑30 Jun 2020 21:13I sometimes wondered if the variety of hardware had to do with local warranty/support for specific brands, or the lack of it, in some areas. Keep in mind things were different in the pre-internet days. I sometimes also wondered if Kmart was simply evaluating the different systems used by the acquired chains for possible chainwide use.storewanderer wrote: ↑07 Jun 2020 03:29 It seemed like in the early 90's they got different equipment and it was from a variety of providers.
In the late 90's Kmart had managed to move most of the locations to the IBM Supermarket Software even if they were not using IBM Hardware.
For a while Kmart ran its old software in the non-Supercenter Stores and the IBM Supermarket Software in the Supercenter stores from the mid 90's to the late 90's. This was the old software that gave every item a "line number." So if someone wanted to void an item it was press void and then enter the line number to void (vs. the IBM where it was void then scan item you wanted to void).
The Kmart in Reno that closed during the first bankruptcy had some other register hardware (no clue what it was) from the mid 90's to early 00's- it was a piece of hardware I had also seen in some mall stores but not sure what it was. It was running IBM Supermarket Software at the end.
I always wondered if the odd variety of hardwares was due to the various businesses they had owned previously. I remember for instance Office Max used Fujistu, Borders used NCR, Waldenbooks used IBM. Probably just a coincidence.
The system PayLess Drug had by the early 90s (which simply read "JB622" on the front but had no name on it, I have always wondered who made these) was one I do not remember ever seeing in Kmart (which owned PayLess), or any other store for that matter. Interestingly, when they took over Pay 'N Save, they retained the IBM 4683 registers which were used with detached keyboards above the scanners. It looked a little weird when Rite Aid took over and their system was used with regular keyboards and CRT monitors in the existing Pay 'N Save checkstands still in use.
At one point I briefly worked at Target in the early 1990s. I remember a newsletter mentioning at some point that the entire chain had been converted to IBM 4683, but it was quite some time after when Kmart was more uniform.
At first I thought Target’s current incarnation of Point of Sale software was a derivative of Cornell-Mayo Associates software also found in Barnes and Noble and Belk, but it’s not, as CMA was purchased by Retalix, and the Retalix POS software used in Target Canada was one of the contributors to Target’s quick demise in Canada.
Edit: I should clarify, it was not the Cornell-Mayo Associates software running Target Canada, it was Retalix's software, but if Target US was running CMA, logic would dictate that Retalix's software and Retalix owning CMA software in the states would have had compatibility issues.
When you entered the offices there were a number of red notebooks which were all the 2 digits departments with inventory sheets/current on-hands in them.
I also remember the upside-down numeric keys on the registers. We had to be touch key trained to operate a register. That was at an original store built ground up in LaVerne CA. I then transferred to an old Gemco in north San Bernardino on Sterling Ave (now shuttered) and the store opened with scan guns. One piece of trivia that's probably gone. At the LaVerne store, the garden shop was on the east side of the building. They've since razed the garden shop and extended the east wall to encompass the garden area as well as the 10 or so parking spots in front of it. When I was hired, there was a narrow stockroom between the toy dept. and the garden shop. On the east wall of that stock room, there were steel framed rollup doors that were never finished. I believe during construction, Target still had an auto center and by the time the store was close to completion, they had closed those down. I want to say there were 6-8 framed openings and they were just bricked over. I believe that's why the garden center was set back from the front and had the parking stalls.