I was handed a great opportunity and a privilege to enter into our industry two years ago. As I stepped into my new assignment I not only focused on making our company better, but I was very interested in the clients and people who make up the entire pawn industry.
As a former entrepreneur, and a “behind the counter” business owner, I encountered many successes and more than a few pitfalls. After moving on to a career in the enterprise software arena, I was excited about my opportunity with Data Age and the pawn industry. An opportunity that married both my software expertise and my small business experience.
Early on I was interested to see if some of those same successes and pitfalls I once experienced were being encountered by our operators and our industry overall. I spoke with numerous pawn shop owners, managers and employees. I also spoke with other industry vendors, not only in the software space but diamond buyers, gold refineries, insurance, merchandise supplies, safe manufactures, and many others. It became clear to me that, while the industry did indeed share many of my past experiences, there seemed to be a significant short coming in the industry overall. Gaps in education, news and general information. As close as the pawn community is, there is a decentralization of education and general knowledge. Over the past two years, Data Age has taken up the mantel of responsibility, helping to bridge these gaps.
For those of you who are linked in with me on LinkedIn, follow our LinkedIn company page or follow us on Facebook, you’ve seen me take every opportunity I can to preach about continued industry education and centralized industry knowledge. Data Age, and some of our competition, have been working hard to deliver education where it relates to our different software systems. Data Age strives to tie this product training into being more efficient, productive, and better overall business owners.
Individuals like Jerry Whitehead and his Pawnshop Consulting Group are working hard to enhance the pawnbrokers businesses at the operations level. Many of our partners are also doing their part, adding their pieces to the education puzzle, with the end game of tooling up the operator in their areas, all in an effort to those operations in the best possible position for success.
That may seem like a lot of work for a pawnbroker looking to get even the most basic of education. That’s because it is.
In addition to education, I saw other gaps in both industry news and information delivery. There really is no one “go to place” to support most of the needs of the operators.
As the preeminent global leader in this market, Data Age is proud to launch a new website, PawnLink.org, which will address these gaps in our industry.
PawnLink.org is a collection of news and information from a wide variety different sources but all focused on the pawn industry and being a small business owner. The goal of this free site is to over communicate to the industry, giving you that “go to place” to get all the news, information and education you need. It’s a highly dynamic site with new news, articles and videos added throughout the day.
That’s right, it’s free. PawnLink.org is run by Data Age as a service to the community and supported by some of the industries most talented and knowledgeable people. All of who believe in sharing their knowledge and expertise with the pawn community.
The site will evolve over time because we encourage vendors, operates, partners and yes, even the competition, to contribute to the platform. The vision for this site was created for the industry by folks like you and I. Folks who crave more information are excited to contribute to progress. While PawnLink.org is in its infancy, it is our hope that the pawn community helps drive the future of this news, information and education center. With your feedback and ideas, we expect PawnLink.org to grow even bigger, providing move and more value to the pawn community.
I encourage everyone to take a look at the site, use it and help grow it. I think you will find the original content very useful but the day-to-day information from the field is the sizzle to the site. The industry is starving for dynamic information, which is easily attained without investing so many cycles through exhausted searches. We hope everyone sees and experiences the value we know this platform will provide.
So, take a moment, visit www.pawnlink.org and look around. Then use the “Suggestion Box” and send us any comments, ideas or suggestions you have.