Wheatsville Food Co-op is a cooperative grocery store that’s been serving Austin, Texas since 1976. With work space at a premium at their two locations, Wheatsville needed a Windows 10 tablet to free staff to be productive anywhere — allowing them to get out of the cramped, noisy space in the back of the stores and out on the floor.

“Many of our users are on desktop PCs, which keeps them static for a better part of the day,” says Wheatsville information systems manager Ryan Vanstone. Though the store hasn’t relied heavily on mobile devices much in the past, Vanstone says that’s changing. “Right now about 10 percent of our users are on mobile devices, but I see that really increasing over the next two to three years.”

But not just any mobile device would do. Vanstone was looking for a Windows 10 tablet to serve as a laptop alternative, with enough power to replace those desktop PCs. He found the Galaxy TabPro S, a 2-in-1 that quickly transforms into a tablet — offering the power and functionality of a PC with the mobility of a tablet.

Upping Productivity on the Floor

To test out the TabPro S, Vanstone recruited a user he thought would get the most out of being freed from the back office, category management coordinator Nina Norton. Norton oversees planning of product categories for Wheatsville, managing pricing, product assortments, promotions and merchandise placement.

“With the Galaxy TabPro S I was able to bounce from spot to spot all over the office finding a place to do the work I needed to get done without feeling disrupted,” Norton says. “The Samsung TabPro S was very liberating.”

Previously, much of Norton’s work required multiple trips between the sales floor and the office — a back and forth she calls a “waste of time.” With the TabPro S, Norton was able to spend her time more wisely. “I was able to bring our distributor’s online catalogs out on the sales floor and browse them while I had our product mix right in front of me.”

Norton also found it easier to plan out product placement. “As a smaller retailer, it’s really important to us to make use of every inch of shelf space and really get a dense assortment where we need it,” she says. “It’s not always easy to picture how that looks behind the computer screen in the office, so it was really helpful to be able to take the TabPro S out on to the sales floor and peruse catalogs while looking at the set.”

Enhancing the Customer Experience

Being on the floor does more than save time; it also allows Wheatsville staff to deliver a better customer experience. “All co-op staff are expected to be as approachable and helpful to owners and shoppers as possible, so the fact that the TabPro S allows me to be productive on the work floor and still available to help customers is really valuable,” Norton says.

And when Norton needed to hunker down and dive into a massive Excel spreadsheet, the TabPro S proved up to the task, offering the full Office experience Norton requires to complete her tasks. “I need everything, and any stripped-down version of a worksheet viewer or editor is just not going to cut it for me.”

Norton says she had struggled in the past with attempting to use tablets for anything beyond browsing the internet or streaming videos, but the TabPro S won her over. “I wouldn’t have been interested if it didn’t have Windows on it. That’s what tipped it for me, knowing I’d be able to get my work done on it,” Norton says. “Windows is native to me … and it was really intuitive and easy to transition [to the TabPro S].”

Improving Troubleshooting Capabilities

On the back end, Vanstone also found the TabPro S to be a valuable addition to his tech toolbox. “With the TabPro S, I was able to troubleshoot Wi-Fi issues by walking around the store and getting full data in real time on any collisions or any issues with wireless in our store. Previously I was stuck using my personal phone to run those same tests and the small screen and limited data wasn’t cutting it.”

He especially appreciated how lightweight the TabPro S was and enjoyed its superior battery life compared to other Windows tablets. “It’s surprising the performance you can get from something so light and so thin,” Vanstone says. “I would recommend the TabPro S as a laptop alternative.”

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