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How Customers Are Using Tablet PCs
Tablet PCs, which at first glance may seem very high-tech for a lumberyard, are finding a home amid the lumber and hardware. Tablet PCs provide the mobility often necessary throughout the store and the yard.

Tablets are actual PCs - as useful as desktops or laptops for familiar PC applications, including all Enterprise software (core systems and productivity tools) and Microsoft Office. Additionally, tablets can provide access to your Enterprise point-of-sale application. The portability of the tablet is the greatest convenience. And, pen-based applications make note-taking a more efficient practice.

Cheryl ReckampYou might have seen Cheryl Reckamp of FE Wheaton taking notes on a tablet PC at the last users’ conference. Wheaton has six tablet PCs now that the sales staff uses. Cheryl says, “We tested the tablet out to see if they would work for us and we thought the ability to take notes was worth the cost.” Salesmen at Wheaton have Excel templates, for example, that they handwrite quantities into. Then, they e-mail these spreadsheets into the office. They also use Franklin Covey applications with the tablets. They take notes, make drawings, fill in electronic forms, mark up plans, etc. Cheryl says the sales staff finds them very convenient as they are constantly on the go.

Herrington’s is also using tablets, but less for the journaling capabilities and more for inventory and receiving applications. Fred Hickman says, “The technology is great. They’re easy to implement and work well. The ability to access our ECS Pro system from anywhere in the store is a huge benefit.” Herrington’s had used handhelds for inventory and receiving before they came to Enterprise. Fred says, “The advantage of using the tablet versus the handhelds is that it’s all real time, no batch processing.”

John Carroll, Enterprise sales manager, says, “The great thing about tablets is that you can use them for multiple tasks – counting and receiving inventory one day, taking care of customers the next. Because it’s a Windows machine, there’s no need for special code from us to make them work and once a yard is equipped with an RF network, people can work from anywhere.”

John adds, “the tablet PC with a wireless hub is an inexpensive alternative to the RF options of the past. Tablets cost less than Symbol hand-held units and a wireless hub only runs about $150. Ideally, you can walk around with a tablet PC and not only count inventory, but receive it, create an order, review a customer account balance, and so much more – all in real-time.”

For more information about tablet PCs, please contact us at info@ecs-inc.com.


Tablet PC

Additional Information

Raymond Building Supply Corp. has increased productivity and reduced time spent on paperwork by implementing tablet PCs. Read more...(PDF, 108KB)

View the Tablet PC product brochure (PDF, 1MB)

Also interesting are Tablet PC Talk and Microsoft's Tablet PC Page.


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