It's a full-on blizzard over here in New England so I find myself yet again…
“The Pool Guy” is a classic Seinfeld episode where due to yet another crazy and highly unlikely series of events, the gang finds themselves in a ridiculous situation. In this episode, Kramer gets a new phone number which is one digit off of the Movie Phone service’s phone number. So, when he starts getting calls for Movie Phone, instead of just saying “wrong number” he actually tries to help the customers out. What does Kramer trying to deduce the movie that would-be customers are typing into the phone have to do with providing customer support? It turns out for some companies – especially in manufacturing – quite a bit.
The Kramer Affect
It’s not easy being a call center agent for heavy equipment or complicated manufactured products. A lot of the time the person calling in about your product is not qualified to repair or even troubleshoot your product. For example, let’s say you manufacture a robotic arm with a laser cutter that automates cutting of sheet metal on a factory floor. The plant is a 24X7 production shop and at 3AM suddenly the arm stops rotating. The person calling in is a Floor Manager who is responsible for managing the plant, but far from an Engineer certified in your laser cutter. In fact, the plant has 15 various robotic arms that you have sold them – all mission critical and all with price tags over $100k. The Floor Manager doesn’t even know the differences between each of these arms. All he knows is your support number and that you’re who to call if something goes wrong. The challenge is how do you get your agent to understand what is actually wrong with your product – or even which product is down – when the Floor Manager is not qualified to troubleshoot your product, but he’s all you have to speak to? This can be a costly issue for both you and your customer. It can take hours of the agent trying to describe what to look for and the customer trying to describe what they are seeing – all while your equipment is down – just to identify the issue and then possibly hours more to walk this customer through how to fix it. In the worst-case scenario, the Floor Manager simply can’t understand what your agent is trying to describe and they remain down until a qualified Engineer can get onsite, or until you can dispatch a field agent.
Introducing PinPoint – Powered by Salesforce SOS
So, what if like Kramer, your agents can exclaim “Why don’t you just tell me the name of the movie you selected?” but in their case, “Why don’t you just show me the equipment you are talking about?” If your agents can actually see the broken equipment they’d be able to identify the exact model and piece of equipment that is broken, and potentially be able to guide the customer to show you exactly what you need to diagnose the issue. In the example above, what if the Floor Manager can show you exactly which robotic arm has stopped rotating and what it’s doing when he pushes the button? Leveraging Salesforce’s SOS product, we have built PinPoint to do just that. Over two years ago, salesforce launched SOS – an exciting extension of Service Cloud that let’s an agent guide a customer through how to use a mobile app. It was modeled after Amazon.com’s Mayday app, and was really promising for companies that had their own mobile apps that required support. Then, in Spring 16, SOS introduced the ability to use the 2-way camera on the smartphone with SOS. SOS was originally intended to work with a company’s mobile app, but most manufacturers or heavy equipment producers don’t have a mobile app for their products. To address this, we’ve created PinPoint – an iOS and Android app that will allow you to easily provide a branded SOS experience between your agents and your customers.
Here’s how SOS would work in the above use case. Your customer calls and it’s that night-shift Floor Manager. He’s describing (or failing to describe) the situation and your agent is struggling to pinpoint which piece of equipment he is talking about (they’re all orange and they all look like robotic arms!). As we mentioned it starts with that phone call. During the call, your agent has already opened a Case in Service Cloud and realizes they need to get a direct look at what the Floor Manager is describing. From here, the agent can guide him to the AppStore or the Google Play store to download your branded Pinpoint app. As the Floor Manager is downloading that, your agent will make themselves available to receive an SOS request via Omni-Channel. Once he downloads your branded PinPoint app, it’s extremely easy to launch an SOS session. In order to launch the session, he will need the Case Number your agent has already started. This will allow the app to automatically link the SOS session to the Case already in progress, versus creating a new Case. That’s really all the Floor Manager needs to do. From there, he launches the SOS session and the agent will accept it through Omni-Channel. Once the session is accepted, the Floor Manager will just need to accept the security sessions to allow for camera access and then your agent will be able to see the camera’s stream of wherever the Floor Manager points the camera. Essentially, from here, the agent can guide him to show them what they need to see in order to troubleshoot the issue. In this case, guiding the Floor Manager to first show the agent the panel with all of the serial numbers and right away, your agent knows that they are dealing with the laser cutter model and by looking up the asset in salesforce sees it’s actually overdue for service. Your agent can also guide the Floor Manager to aim the camera at various parts of the arm and see if this is something that can be fixed remotely – something as simple as a broken hose. As an added bonus, the camera stream can be recorded and stored leveraging Amazon’s S3 service in case you need to review what your agent saw later. Once the agent has seen everything they need to see, the SOS session is ended and the normal resolution or possibly escalation process is initiated.
As you can imagine, not only can SOS be a time-saver for your agents in these situations, but it’s a terrific customer satisfaction driver. This is a support channel that as a manufacturer, you can advertise proudly to show how you’re adopting state-of-the-art technologies to do all that you can to address their issues. It also can do wonders for your agent’s morale who won’t have to deal with hours long frustrating calls anymore. Finally, this will take the guess-work out of the process for your agents. Your agents won’t need to be like Kramer and guessing “Agent Zero?” but will definitively be able to see the issue to suggest an appropriate resolution.
What do you need in order to provide this channel of support to your customers? First, as we mentioned above, SOS is an extension of Service Cloud and it’s an additional license that will need to be purchased from salesforce. Once you have the licenses you can embed this in your own mobile app, or you can leverage our pre-built PinPoint SOS app. To setup PinPoint, it’s a one-time setup fee where GearsCRM will work with you to build customized branded applications for iOS and Android that are connected to your salesforce instance. The branding will be provided by you and you’ll be able to control the application’s look and feel, terms & conditions, name and icon. There are additional features that can be added to PinPoint, but we felt keeping the app lightweight and focused on SOS was the better way to go to keep it simple for your customers. On the salesforce side, we’ll assist in setting up all of the routing rules and Case configuration to handle the new channel in salesforce. Once we have the apps approved, we’ll work with you to get them published to the AppStore and Google Play. Once they are published you are good to go!
If you’re interested in seeing more, please contact us and we’ll gladly show you PinPoint and SOS in action.