This week I have seen two really cool technologies that I would love to incorporate into our service department.
First is Google Assistant. There is a YouTube video of a presentation showing off Google Assistant calling for reservations and handling interactions with people seamlessly. Granted, the examples shown are of the Assistant calling the business, but I can easily imagine the Assistant answering the call and using its contextual understanding to determine what the client is asking for (a service call, a consultation, more information) and transferring the call to the right department and even handling the call and scheduling appropriately.
Can you imagine a client calling at any time of the day or night and the call is answered by a natural sounding voice that will handle the call and route to a real human if necessary, but will otherwise schedule a service call or a consultation without any interaction and the caller is none the wiser that they have just spoken with a computer? In the presentation linked to above, pay attention to all of the human idiosyncrasies that make it seem like a real person; the “ums,” “mm-hmmm,” pauses, and decision making. It is just incredible.
The second example is something I heard about on a podcast from a month or two ago that I just listened to today. While not quite as futuristic as Google Assistant, it is being used today and I can see the real world application immediately. OneVision Resources, the industry partner who provides out-sourced 24/7 white-labeled support to serve integrator’s clients, has introduced an Augmented Reality tool that they are already deploying. It is a live-streaming support tool which allows the support technician to see exactly what the client is seeing and to make live mark-ups on screen. It is not dissimilar from FaceTime, but it is platform agnostic and allows the interaction to happen right from the initial call, without having to switch to a video chat app.
Imagine it is Saturday evening and a client calls your tech support line, which conveniently goes to OneVision so that you are not interrupted during your movie night with the family. The client is saying that their cable is not working in the living room. The OneVision rep and client activate the Live Stream and look at the rack together. The OneVision rep immediately sees that the cable box is not turned on and instructs the client to try to turn it on manually by guiding them to where the power button is. It still will not turn on. So the OneVision rep uses the remote troubleshooting tools and reboots the cable box. After boot up, the box turns on when the client pushes the button and all is well. What would take only a few minutes with a video stream, could have taken 10 frustrating minutes on a regular audio-only phone call as the tech tried to explain which cable box to look at, what button to press and what to look for to see if it turned back on.
These are just two tools that I have seen lately. What other great tools are you itching to implement to make your service department run smoothly?