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Body Shop Increases Efficiency with Windows Tablet and Rugged Case

body-shop-bannerIn today’s day and age every job has technology at its heart. Some companies are more advanced than others, and that can make coming to a new company difficult. That’s what Steve Fenske experienced when he left his old job and took a position as the Body Shop Manager at Huber Chevrolet in Omaha, Nebraska. The difficulty wasn’t that he had to learn a new technology, it was that he had to go back to the old ways of doing his job – pencil and paper. 

Customer Challenge 

This customer challenge was unique. Huber Chevrolet’s body shop was working the same way the rest of the industry worked. That meant members of the service team would go out to a vehicle with a notepad and pencil to take down the car’s vehicle identification number (VIN) and other notes to assess the damage. They would then take pictures of the vehicle and the damage using a camera before returning to the shop to upload the photos and enter all the data into a computer to create an estimate. This took a lot of time and would frustrate both customers and employees. If any of the data was entered incorrectly, the employee had to take more valuable time to correct the mistake. 

Fenske knew there was better way and was quick to act upon it. He had utilized tablets at his previous job and knew that there was only one company that offered the ultimate rugged tablet he needed. 

MobileDemand Solution 

Steve purchased a MobileDemand rugged xCase for his Microsoft Surface Pro tablet. With his experience, he knew MobileDemand’s xCase was the only case for the Surface Pro built rugged enough to survive the drops and rough treatment tablets often undergo in a body shop. In addition to the case being tough, it was also easy to carry and hold, thanks to the back hand strap and briefcase handle. Fenske knew the value of a tablet in an auto body shop and was eager to show it to his employees. 


With a Microsoft Surface Pro tablet and MobileDemand rugged case everything Steve and his team once did with pencil, paper, and camera could now be completed more efficiently. Photos can be taken with the tablet’s camera or a cell phone which has Huber’s estimating system app installed, notes are written directly into the tablet which also has the software installed and the VIN is scanned using the tablet, cutting down on errors entering the long string of letters and numbers. Thanks to WiFi capability and the estimating software Huber uses, once an estimator enters the make and model of the vehicle they are working with, they can access Huber’s parts database, drill down into parts required for repairs, and select the needed parts as the estimators are looking at the vehicles. Estimates can now be written up on the spot and parts can immediately be pulled or ordered, cutting down time wasted walking back and forth from computers to vehicles. Customers enjoy being more involved in the quick, straightforward process. 

The biggest challenge faced by Fenske and the team at Huber is a learning curve; it takes time to adapt. Nonetheless, Huber Chevrolet has seen an increase in time savings using Surface Pro tablets and MobileDemand rugged cases, but they realize they have only just begun as they work to identify more ways to increase their efficiency. 

The Microsoft Surface Pro and rugged xCase can help drive production in many jobs across many industries. To help be even more productive, they can be easily paired with a keyboard. When the need arises to type documents or do more extensive data entry, it’s as simple as sitting down, setting out the easel, and attaching the keyboard to transform it into a laptop computer. And for organizations that don't already have a Surface Pro, MobileDemand offers Microsoft Surface bundles, which include the tablet, rugged case, and a chemically strengthened screen protector applied by a technician, so the bundle is ready to deploy when our customers receive it.