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IMPORTANT: Ideal Support will be Offline Starting Friday at 4 p.m. CST – Sunday Evening

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On Friday, Ideal will be upgrading its support ticket management system to take advantage of better performance and new features that are designed to improve service. This upgrade has been planned and tested for several months.

In preparation for this upgrade, Ideal Support will need to be offline beginning Friday, January 15th at 4 p.m. Central Standard Time through Sunday evening. We will resume normal support hours at 7 a.m. Monday morning.

We all know the best plans can sometimes encounter some hiccups, so we ask for your patience if we do encounter any issues that cause delays in addressing your questions.

 

Ideal’s Christmas and New Year’s Hours

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With the end of year quickly approaching, we’d like to make you aware of our Christmas and New Year’s Hours:

Thursday, December 24th - Support available from 7 a.m. – 4 p.m. (Central Time)
Friday, December 25th - Office Closed, No Support
Saturday, December 26th - Regular Saturday Support Hours

Thursday, December 31st - Support available from 7 a.m. – 4 p.m. (Central Time)
Friday, January 1st - Office Closed, No Support
Saturday, January 2nd - Regular Saturday Support Hours

Ideal wishes you and your loved ones a very Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year!

Upgrade Your Ideal Hardware Now and Reduce Taxes!

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Did you know that under the provisions of Internal Revenue Code – Sections 179, you can deduct tangible property in the year it is purchased?

That means you can upgrade your whole computer system, a single workstation, or simply add a new printer and deduct the entire amount in this tax year. Normally you would have to depreciate these items over several years, but this extension is a way to immediately receive these income tax benefits this year.  Based on your tax situation, this could be an effective discount of 15% – 40%!

Additional information you should know:

If you are in need of a larger upgrade, Ideal, in conjunction with our leasing companies, can structure a Non-Tax Lease. This lease allows you to finance the purchase while still taking advantage of the deduction. Ideal encourages you to consult your tax advisor before moving forward with any major purchase.

This is also the time of year when customer inquire about additional products and services we have available. The following are products we currently offer.

  • Additional Training (both onsite and remote)
  • Secure, Worry-free, Managed Online Backup Service of your Ideal data
  • Mobile Inventory App to make your inventory counts faster and easier to perform
  • Imaging Interface to parts lookup tools such as PartSmart, MediaCat, Kpad, MercNet, HondaIn, New Holland, and Snap-on (formerly Proquest’s Parts Manager Pro).
  • Integrated Accounts Payable for writing checks from Ideal. Also makes certain price adjustments and floor planning offsets easier to perform
  • Integrated General Ledger for your accounting needs
  • Payroll Module with interface to the General Ledger
  • Finance & Insurance Modules so you can create your own sales deals and paperwork for lenders
  • Additional User Licenses
  • Multi-Store Add-On for additional store locations
  • Integrated Merchant Services system through our partner ChargeItPro to streamline your point of sale and eliminate rekeying errors
  • Bar Code Scanners to streamline your point of sale
  • Computers (Workstations, Laptops, Servers, and Monitors)
  • Printers including laser printers, label printers, and cash ticket printers.
  • Integrated Cash Drawers for cash control
  • Shopping Cart Interface to easily import your orders from your online shopping cart into the Ideal software

  • ShipWorks Interface to easily import your orders from ShipWorks into the Ideal software

Ideal processes a lot of hardware upgrades this time of year. If you’re interested, please contact Brian Mohr at 319-261-1209 or email him at bmohr@constellationdealer.com so he can go through your system, make recommendations, and get you your new equipment so you can deduct it this year.

In order for your upgrade to qualify as a 2015 purchase, we must be able to ship it and bill it before the end of the year. To meet this deadline, you will need to place your order by Friday, December 18th.

Ideal’s Thanksgiving Hours

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Thanksgiving

We want to make sure you’re aware of Ideal’s business hours during the Thanksgiving week.  These hours are designed to give Ideal employees time with their families, as well as continue to support you. The hours are as follows:

Thursday, November 26 – Ideal Closed – No Support Available
Friday, November 27 – Ideal Closed – On-call Emergency Calls Only
Saturday, November 28 – Regular Support Available from 8 a.m.-1 p.m. CT

From everyone at Ideal, we wish you a Happy Thanksgiving.  We’re thankful to have you as our customer!

 

Ideal to Migrate to a New Telecommunication System on November 19th

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On Thursday, November 19th, Ideal will be migrating to a new telecommunication system. Our Support Center and office phone numbers will remain the same, but there will be changes to our incoming call options. This new system will include better phone queue visibility, as well as better metrics for reporting.

Once the transition takes places, there could be some initial delays in regards to leaving voicemails for support. For the fastest service, we ask that you submit a ticket via the Click to Request a Support Call button located on our Welcome Page.

We appreciate your patience with us during the implementation phase of the new phone system.

 

Latest Version of Ideal Mobile App is Now Available for Download from App Stores

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An updated version of the Ideal Mobile App is available now to download from the Android and iOS App stores. This update is focused largely on customer feedback on service and support for iOS 9.x, while continuing to deliver improved performance and reliability.

Please ensure that your dealership has the Ideal v8.9 Build 210 Fall Release, which is a pre-requisite to run this version of the Mobile App. Here are some steps you should follow:

1. Run the Ideal Update.
2. Download the new app on your mobile devices.
3. Go to the machine running the Mobile Service (it will be the only machine that shows this Menu: Applications, System Manager, Mobile Service Update) and run the Mobile Service Update.

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Message from Support Manager Renee Hiemstra on Ideal Support’s Upcoming Technology Upgrades

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Seminar1-sfwPrior to the end of the year, Ideal will be implementing two major infrastructure improvements. We will be upgrading our support ticket management system to take advantage of better performance and new features. This upgrade has been planned and tested for several months, therefore we are not anticipating any impact on our ability to continue to provide high quality support to our customers. We all know the best plans can sometimes still encounter some hiccups, so we ask for your patience if we do encounter any issues that cause delays addressing your questions.

The second major infrastructure change, will be a new telecommunication system. Our Support Center and office phone numbers will not change, but we will have an improved support phone queue. More information will be provided as we get closer to this change.

Regards,
Renee Hiemstra

2015 Training Seminar Recap and 2016 Seminar Dates Announced!

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Seminar1-sfwSeptember’s Ideal Training Seminar proved to be Ideal’s best yet! We were pleased to welcome 56 attendees from 37 businesses in 21 different states for the three-day event at The Hotel at Kirkwood in Cedar Rapids, IA.

“I had never been to anything like this so I wasn’t sure what to expect. It taught me a lot about the system and Ideal,” said Tara Hampton of Bi-Lo Sales & Service in Ocala, FL. “Just stepping through the program from start to finish has taught me so many short cuts. You have a great staff that’s very knowledgeable and ready to assist in any way they can. Kirkwood was a great place for the seminar. It was very nice and easy to get to. The food was fabulous and the area was bright and cheerful.”

Ideal’s Lead Trainer Dave Baumgarten presented the majority of material to Ideal users and was accompanied by a supporting cast that included Support Manager Renee Hiemstra, Trainer Troy Simon, Lead AP/GL Trainer Nicole Lindsey, Support Representative Jami Jaspering, Account Manager Brian Mohr, Director of Product Management Mario Britz and General Manager Sean Raynor. Each covered specific areas of Ideal and provided attendees with a wealth of information from different perspectives.

“Dave is incredibly knowledgeable on the Ideal system,” said Dale Golden of Midwest Equipment in Peoria, IL. “He was patient with questions and had an answer for everything. He was also very efficient with the amount of time he had. I didn’t realize how many features the program had until I visited the seminar. It’s a great way to meet others that use the software and it helps clear up a lot of questions.”

“We are purchasing the AP and GL modules and I wanted to get a feel for the software,” said Tom Oswald of Sylvania Mower Center in Sylvania, OH. “Nicole did a good job of presenting the accounting information and sold me on the software.”

“Jami is a lot like Nicole. They both did a great job helping us ‘newer’ dealers and we walked away with a few really good tips and tricks to make our life easier,” said Tanya Kistner of Eau Claire Lawn Equipment in Eau Claire, WI. “We really like the direction the programmers are going and would love to get more familiar with the mobile app. We love the idea of connecting our website to Ideal for selling parts and pricing inventory. Overall, I just love meeting the employees and knowing the future plans and direction of the company. It gives us positive feelings that we have made the right choice in Ideal.”

In addition to the Ideal staff, dealership expert Bob Clements was also on hand to speak to dealers about key metrics they should be analyzing in their business.

“I had not heard of Bob before and he threw some great ideas that I am planning on implementing into our business,” added Tara Hampton.

As a whole, attendees saw the value of attending an annual training seminar and were left with invaluable information that they can take home to their dealership.

“This seminar is a must for Ideal users,” added Tom Oswald. “I need to send my employees for the modules that pertain to them.”

“The tips we have learned will easily pay for the cost of the seminar within the next month and there is no price that can be put on the decrease in frustration we will feel now,” added Tanya Kistner. “Each seminar we attend, we get more and more comfortable with the program.

Ideal thanks all who attended and is pleased to announce the date for the 2016 seminar. Based on feedback from this year, we’ve decided to extend the seminar to four days. Next year’s event will take place Monday, September 26th through Thursday, September 29th at The Hotel at Kirkwood in Cedar Rapids, IA. Additional details, including registration information, will be available in the upcoming months. Stay tuned!

Android 6 and iOS 9 Upgrade

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We’d like to remind all Mobile app users to please hold off on updating their Android and iOS devices to Android 6 – Marshmallow and iOS 9 respectively, which is currently not supported by Ideal Mobile App.

We plan to update Ideal Mobile App to support the new platforms as part of our release in November 2015, and we will notify you as soon as this release is available.

Please notify all your Mobile App users, to ensure that they are informed of this important message.

ChargeItPro and the new EMV standard for chip & pin cards

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IDEAL and ChargeItPro are working hard to get our mutual customers updated for EMV. ChargeItPro’s software code is complete, and they’re in the final stages of testing. ChargeItPro is aiming to start updating IDEAL customers within the next few weeks.

For questions about EMV, please call Dan O’Bannon at 800-989-2135 x 314 or email dano@chargeitpro.com.

If you have questions about EMV and how the liability shift may affect you, please visit the links below:

 




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