How to integrate rugged technology into the customer service industry

maxatec card swipe

Businesses are constantly striving to save time, cut costs and improve the customer experience, and the increasing use of technology is a popular solution to this problem. However, using incorrect or outdated systems can prove to be more of a hinderance than it is a help.

It is essential that businesses know how and when to implement technology in the workplace to ensure maximum impact. It is also necessary that businesses use technology that is able to take the rigors of the day to day work place, both front of house and behind the scenes. You may not be working in sub zero temperatures but you will be amazed at how vulnerable standard devices are, from day to day dust and steam, to drops, scuffs and spillages.

Benefits of using rugged technology

Reliable longevity

Rugged technology no longer means big, heavy and clunky equipment. Thanks to clever design and specialist materials, rugged PDAs and tablets can now look as sleek as most consumer devices. But rugged technology has the inbuilt benefit that it has been engineered for reliability, ensuring a lengthy service life making it a worthwhile investment.

The longevity of rugged technology is one of its biggest selling points. The ruggedisation protects the technology from dust, drops and spillages, helping to encourage a longer lifespan compared to commercial products. Mobile devices including tablets and printers, are often drop tested, usually around 1.8m onto concrete, in order to test their suitability for rugged environments.

Military grade

Many rugged devices have obtained US military certification. The standard is MIL-STD-810 which addresses a broad range of environmental conditions including temperature, dust, vibration, shock etc. Other mobile devices, including payment terminals, PDA’s, printers and tablets have various levels of rugged certification marked by its IP (Ingress Protection) rating. The highest rating is IP68 and many rugged PDA’s are now certified to IP67.

Improved usability

You can also improve employee efficiency with rugged technology that keeps them connected. Whether it’s checking stock levels in the warehouse, or taking the payment system to the customer, rugged technology is a great time saving solution.

Rugged technology that incorporates a touch screen is generally more responsive than commercial touch screen products, enabling you to use them whilst wearing gloves or with wet hands, making it perfect for food preparation and bar areas.

Dominos Pizza gets a rugged upgrade

Link to case study – (

Dominos Pizza approached Maxatec after they experienced difficulty with their existing dot matrix printers. The printers were susceptible to damage from flour particles, resulting in mis-feeds and paper jams. This was not only an inconvenience for Dominos staff, it delayed customer service and the pizza delivery process, causing a loss of revenue. The dot matrix printers were also loud and and their chunky design took up a lot of counter space.

Maxatec worked to resolve Dominos’issues, providing them with the CognitiveTPG Advantage™printer, a small, rugged label printer, that is easy to use. They ditched the dot matrix printer in option for thermal print technology, which can withstand the temperatures of hot pizza boxes. The metal chassis and print head is extremely durable and can print up to 50km under a standard warranty, making it the perfect solution to withstand the rigors of the retail and kitchen environment.

How to incorporate rugged technology in your workplace

Front of housemaxatec mobile ordering

You can use rugged technology both behind the scenes and front of house, bringing technology into your customer experience. Mobile point of sale is a great place to start incorporating rugged technology into your business.You can improve customer service by taking payment options to them, without worrying about environmental or accidental damage to your technology.

Keep your staff connected with a rugged tablet computer, applicable to both stock rooms and front of house. Having rugged tablets available to shop floor staff enables employees to browse products and check stock levels whilst remaining with the customer, enhancing the customer experience.

Ruggedised point of sale

Point of sale systems are put under a lot of strain so they need to be able to cope with rigorous long term use. Long gone are the days where sales were only transferred at the main desk. Mobile point of sales systems have taken payment to the table. Whilst this is convenient for customers, it also puts the technology at further risk of damage. The development of rugged card readers and barcode scanners gives your business the ability to improve the customer experience, whilst using technology that will stand the test of time.

Rugged mobile point of sale tablets often have inbuilt card payment systems, making them a versatile tool for any front of house. They empower members of sale staff and enable them to track stock and process customer orders then and there. This is a small time saving that greatly improves the customer experience, and therefore their relationship with your brand.

Fixed point of sale terminals can also have the front panel IP (Ingress Protection) rated and have the cabinet sealed to protect from water damage. Fanless point of sale terminals have no moving parts or fan filters, which prevents any risk of damage in dusty environments such as DIY/Hardware retail stores, where standard point of sales can become blocked.

Point of sale peripherals have also received a rugged upgrade in order to reduce damage from liquid spillage and debris. The addition of spill proof covers are now common for printers used ‘front of house’in the Bar and Restaurant environment

Try before you buy

If you aren’t in the position to commit fully to all new ruggedised technology, you can improve your working environment by upgrading your existing equipment. Tuffscreen is a retrofit screen protection system that is suitable for all types of hardware. Its dual-layer screen protection provides impact and scratch resistance, whilst reducing glare. The self adhesive product gives years of reliable protection, without the need for replacing, enabling you to experience the benefits of ruggedised and upgrade your existing technology.

Ruggedisation – The new standard in customer service

Rugged technology has evolved greatly in recent years, stepping away from their classic chunky design, to become more streamline. They no longer take up a vast footprint in comparison to their commercial equivalent. Their intuitive design, combined with their longevity, rugged technology is now a realistic solution for the customer service industry.

Author Bio:

Maxatec has vast technology experience spanning over 40 years, distributing the highest grade business devices, including rugged mobile point of sale systems.