Complete IT Setup Guide For Dispensaries

it setup for dispensaries

Setting up a dispensary is an advanced project and is better left to our IT installation experts. However, if you are keen on attempting this yourself, we wanted to let you know how to do it right. Here, is the complete Setup Guide for Dispensaries. 

An install consists of two parts: planning the dispensary design and physically putting all the elements together. 

Planning your dispensary design requires an in-depth understanding of volts, amps, watts, circuits, inner workings of the hardware and electrical components, wiring, and much more. If you have the knowledge about these things, you will be able to ace this task seamlessly. If not Cure8 is always ready to help!

On the other hand, putting all elements such as hardware and software together is when your dispensary will be up and running – ready for launch.

How To Start?

Before you start buying hardware such as laptops, barcode scanners, and filling up your dispensary with chairs, tables, and equipment, try to visualize what you want your dispensary to look like. Make accurate measurements of your space to determine how much space you have to spare. After which, you can start estimating the size of equipment you’ll want. By doing so, it will be easier for you to design how the layout of your dispensary must be.  

As you visualize your floor plan, you must also decide the kind of work environment you want for your employees. Different dispensary setups may be approved by different state regulations, so seek appropriate permissions as required.

Prepare a floor plan that is easy to navigate for your staff and the patrons who are visiting. From POS stations to digital signages, everything must be in the right places. At the end of the day, it all boils down to finding out which dispensary floor plan you and your staff are comfortable with.

Timelines

Now, this depends on the complexity of the tasks. Cure8 experts take as little as a few hours to a full day or two to completely set up all the tech for a dispensary. We are IT experts and have done dozens of installs, so prepping up to set up a dispensary is quite easy for us.

But for some who isn’t tech-savvy or is setting up a dispensary for the first time, it will take you more than 2-4 full days. It may take you months or weeks of prepping up in advance and you may have a lot to figure out in the first few days and weeks after launch day.

How To Select The Right Software And Hardware For Your Dispensary?

You are the best judge when it comes to choosing the right software and hardware for your dispensary. They have to be according to the budget, design, and functionality you prefer.

Software

Here is a list of software you can choose from. But you have to make sure that the software integrates with your state’s track and trace software as well. You have to also make sure that if you’re going to use a SaaS program it has to be one that cannabis businesses are allowed. Few like QuickBooks and MailChimp do allow cannabis businesses to integrate.

Hardware

For hardware, don’t go cheap. You must buy reliable and commercial-grade hardware. In fact, if you have chosen the software already, you can seek suggestions about buying hardware from them as well. In most cases we’ve found that they aren’t trying to force you to buy certain hardware just because it’s more expensive or sold by a partner, it genuinely works best with the hardware they recommend.

You can also easily access all the needed hardware for your dispensary setup from Cure8.

What You’ll Need To Setup Your Dispensary?

Here is a list and approx. price of hardware you will need for setting up your dispensary:

  1. 4 POS Stations, including:
    • 4 Tablets ($350 ea)
    • 4 Tablet Stands ($200 ea)
    • 4 Barcode Scanners ($400 ea)
    • 4 Receipt Printers (w/ receipt paper) ($450 ea)
    • 4 Cash Drawers ($150 ea)
  2. 1 Back of House Tablet ($350 ea)
  3. 1 Back of House Receipt Printer ($350 ea)
  4. 1 Networking Rack ($750)
  5. 1 Firewall Appliance (w/ 1 year license) ($900)
  6. 1 UPS ($425)
  7. 1 24 Port Switch ($750)
  8. 1 Refurbished Laptop for Remote Network Access ($600)
  9. 3 Wireless Access Points (1 for FOH, 1 for BOH, 1 for vault) ($175 ea)
  10. 1 Manager Laptop or Desktop ($900)
  11. 1 Monitor for Surveillance System ($250)
  12. 1 Office Printer ($325)

How To Setup Your Dispensary?

Site Design & Planning

This step lays the groundwork for your dispensary. Workout where your front of house POS stations and back of house manager’s desk will be placed. Then decide the location for the order fulfillment station and networking rack. Design a layout plan for the surveillance cameras and wireless access point placements.

A good cabling plan is a key to a stable dispensary, so workout the cabling plan, and don’t forget to put some near the curbside service area and for ID checkers at the main entrance. Cabling is important as you would want a neat-looking dispensary without cables hanging around from all ends.

Procure Hardware

We’ve already highlighted the hardware you will be needing to set up your dispensary in the section above. All you need to do now is to start ordering it. You would want to do this as early as possible to avoid any supply shortages at the last moment.

Internet And Phone Setup

This is the most important step to get the dispensary up and running. Choose the best internet provider and get it installed. 100 Mbps speed is ideal for cannabis dispensaries, but if that is not available you may be able to work with 10 Mbps as well.

Leave The Heavy Lifting To Your Contractor

We know how much you want to set up your dispensary on your own, but it is best to let your contractor handles as much heavy-duty stuff as possible. Let them handle stuff like camera and speaker mounting, WAP installation on ceilings, cabling, and mounting the network rack. By doing this you will be able to save on doing physical labor and will have time to work on other things.

Time To Unbox, Install, And Setup All The Devices

This is not as easy as you’d think and it might take a bit longer. Unbox all the devices as they will be individually wrapped, and you may have to install the software on each device separately, including all your POS tablets or terminals and your manager’s PC.

The Toughest Part – Setting Up The Network

Setting up the network at your dispensary isn’t like setting one up at your house. Cure8 experts can set up the network at your dispensary. But if you still insist on doing it yourself, start by:

  • Set up local routing
  • Segment your networks. You must have separate ones for:
    • POS stations
    • Wi-Fi
    • Back office, and
    • Security cameras
  • Assign static IPs to avoid issues

Last But Not The Least – Testing

You need to be sure that everything works fine. So, start testing everything including POS software, tablets, receipt printer, cash drawer, surveillance system, and manager’s PC.

Need help with anything? – Reach out to Cure8 at any time for help.

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