ChromeOS improves collaboration and customer experience at Zôdio stores
Today’s post is by Amandine Marousez, Head of Projects and Innovation, Zôdio, a specialty retailer of home decoration furnishings with 20 stores across France. Zôdio adopted ChromeOS devices to improve employee collaboration and to help employees provide an improved customer experience.
Zôdio stores are a destination where customers can buy furniture and decor, but also participate in workshops like learning how to make sushi or do macramé. We even help people personalize purchases such as pillows or coffee mugs in our on-site “ZôdioLabs.”
Store employees often help guide the customers’ creative journey from helping to choose colors, sizes, order products, or work in the ZôdioLab. When we recently replaced Windows PCs with ChromeOS devices, employees’ jobs became easier and customer interactions improved.
All the employees are happy with our ChromeOS devices. In IT, we’re happy because it’s easier to administer. The security manager is very happy. Even the CEO is happy
A mission to innovate in the cloud
Our brand has evolved considerably since opening our first store in 2007. We’ve shifted focus to products that are good for people and the planet, and we opened ZôdioLabs inside stores. As part of our evolution, we took a closer look at the productivity solutions employees used in stores and in back offices. We want to work in the cloud with software and hardware that’s secure but also easily accessible and understandable for our employees.
We asked employees — including store managers and salespeople — to test out several devices and platforms. We asked them to perform day-to-day tasks and tell us which solutions were easier and faster. ChromeOS devices were the winners. Employees love Chromebooks’ long battery life and fast boot up time. Unlike the employees’ old Windows PCs, ChromeOS updates happen in the background, so work is not delayed. ChromeOS made our employees more efficient in everything they do.
To ensure the adoption of ChromeOS devices went smoothly, we surveyed employees about applications that might prevent them from switching. Employees in accounting and management use Excel heavily, so we started a project to teach them how to use Google Sheets. We set a deadline to remove Excel access for all store employees, and did a lot of evangelism around Sheets and Google Drive. The project was a success, and everyone now uses Sheets.
With zero-touch enrollment, ChromeOS devices are ready to use within minutes.
ChromeOS devices go straight to work, right out of the box
With zero-touch enrollment, employees connect their ChromeOS devices to Wi-Fi , login, and they are ready to work. The process takes about five minutes — unlike Windows devices, where you spend hours setting up and loading software.
We now have about 50 HP Chromebooks at Zôdio Headquarters and 320 HP Chromebooks across 20 retail stores. For each store, about seven managers have their own ChromeOS devices, while the rest of the employees share ChromeOS devicespositioned on the sales floor. The shared Chromebooks are used to print orders, reserve workshop spaces for customers, and check product inventory. Employees at each store’s reception area use Chromebooks to look up reservations for the ZôdioLab, reserve places in our cooking workshops, and order products for home delivery.
If an employee has a problem with their ChromeOS device, we do a powerwash or we give them a new Chromebook. Five minutes later, they can work, unlike with a Windows PC where you have to reinstall everything they need. It saves a lot of time.
Simplifying device management
It was equally important for us to ensure the devices would make the workday easier for our IT employees. We used to have so many problems managing Windows PCs — for example, updating software and drivers. With ChromeOS, we save time because the IT team doesn’t have to upgrade software or install security protections.
With ChromeOS, the IT team also has more tools and features to improve ease of management. Using the Google Admin console, we are able to pick and choose the 20 authorized applications, while the others are blocked by default. If there is a secure app an employee needs to use, we remotely provide authorization and it is added to the employee device within minutes.
Every day in our stores, we see how productivity has improved with ChromeOS devices. The IT team gets far fewer support tickets, employees are happier, and Chromebooks are far easier to use than Windows PCs. ChromeOS removes the distractions of IT disruptions and lets employees focus on what they do best — helping customers reach their design aspirations and making dreams a reality.
The author thanks Léo de Lullo, Head of Infrastructure, Zôdio, for his contribution to this post.