We’ve received some pretty “cool” photos and stories in response to our “Cool Tool” Contest, in which field service workers seem to be having a great time submitting photos of themselves and their favorite tools. Since an iPad 2 goes to the winner, the stakes are high, and some people have even written stories describing how important their specific tool is to them and their workday.

One of these stories was written by Derek, who works for Mobile Demand in Cedar Rapids, Iowa. Since The SmartVan often focuses on rugged devices, we were interested to see how his tool helps him on the job:

The most essential “tool” to me is the rugged tablet PC. This tool replaces clipboards and pencils and allows for real-time information at your fingertips while you’re at the customer site. Being able to know the availability of products and services while you’re in front of the customer only increases customer satisfaction. Color camera, bar code scanner, WWAN, Bluetooth and more all help make field calls as efficient as possible.

In the field it’s important to stay organized going from site to site; the tablet PC connects wirelessly to headquarters and other field techs, which means more work can get completed in less time.  This PC is unique in that I can drop it, use it in the rain, use it out in direct sun and in freezing cold conditions and it will function flawlessly. Not only that, but if I happen to forget my hammer I can simply use my rugged tablet PC!

Nothing better than increasing productivity resulting in increased profits for the company. This is the all-around tool that you will be seeing more and more field techs switching to in the extremely near future.

Thanks for entering, Derek. While you clearly love your rugged tablet PC, you’re definitely in the running to win an iPad 2. If he wins the prize, maybe he would slap a rugged case on it, although we wouldn’t recommend using it as a hammer.

Our “Cool Tool” Contest is going on until May 31, so send in those photos of you and your coolest tool for the chance to win a brand new iPad 2!

More about “Cool Tools” on The SmartVan