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Slaying 6 Myths on Remote Visual Support

Emerging technologies make bold promises. Whether they ultimately go mainstream or crash strongly depends on delivering the goods, but also on the buzz surrounding them. And when it comes to determining a technology’s potential, it’s essential to separate fact from fiction. Remote visual support is no different.

The hype around remote visual support, accelerated by the extreme restrictions and limitations brought about by the COVID-19 crisis, is an excellent example of how misconceptions can take root and obfuscate the business benefits of innovative and practical technologies.  Here are six myths on the how, why, and ‘what for’ of remote visual assistance. Ready, set…slay!

Myth # 1: Remote visual assistance is for hardware tech support only

Got a problem – call tech support. Sounds familiar?  Sure it does, but that’s only one side of the coin. Calling tech support and having a video call – well, that’s a whole different story. This technology can be applied at every channel and touchpoint of the customer journey, from pre-purchase through contracting and billing, onboarding, and even upsells.  And that’s especially true today when in-person shopping is limited, and people mostly interact with service providers on digital platforms.

Visual assistance technology is a powerful tool for technical support, but it can also help address other customer inquiries, deliberations, and bureaucratic issues. Sharing a view of a physical document, agents can point to a particular line to clarify billing or contract issues, validate coupons, or view damaged goods prior to returns. When an in-store experience isn’t possible, visual assistance can help reduce buyer uncertainty before completing an online purchase, ensuring the product meets customer expectations. Moreover, remote visual support harnesses screen-share and co-browsing technologies to offer assistance in digital matters– such as syncing your smart device to the app or upgrading your cable subscription.

Myth #2: Remote visual assistance is a disaster recovery solution for the pandemic only

The pandemic has made visual engagement a must-have solution, offering vital contactless services that help ensure customers’ and technicians’ health and safety. But capabilities in crises are only an added benefit; visual assistance technology is valuable in “normal” times and an integral part of long-term business strategy – to save costs and optimize services while improving customer experience and satisfaction.

Incorporating remote visual assistance into day-to-day operations helps:

  • reduce customer effort and wait time
  • reduce costly truck rolls and product returns
  • lower high call volume
  • improve efficiency
  • increase employee engagement.

Many organizations are investing in innovations driven by customer demand and expectations that also improve KPIs such as Net Promoter Score (NPS), Average Handle Time (AHT), and First Call Resolution (FCR).

Myth #3: Remote visual assistance is a luxury that shouldn’t be considered during a financial crisis

The opposite is true. It’s especially now, when enterprises are struggling in uncertain economic conditions, that customer service organizations need sustainable cost reduction tactics that allow for business continuity and resilience. Remote visual assistance is the optimal solution for cost optimization, an effective strategy across the board to reduce costs without compromising service quality and customer satisfaction and without trade-offs. For example, effective diagnosis of the problem ahead of – or instead of – a technician visit saves time and reduces the need for costly and often unnecessary truck rolls.

Visual assistance also reduces call volumes, costly machine downtime, product returns and customer effort, and can prevent customer churn.

Myth #4: All remote visual assistance solutions are alike

Not all “see what your customer sees” solutions are alike; they may differ in their effect on core KPIs, as well as their ability to support specific business needs and service types. Selecting the right solution that drives greater adoption among your agents, technicians, and customers will result in a higher ROI.

For example, the connection method is a critical factor; browser-based solutions tend to be effortless and drive higher adoption rates than app-based solutions. Some solutions enable customers to pay bills or manage subscriptions independently or mirror their mobile screen for support, which enables a larger number of use cases. Advanced visual assistance solutions leverage Computer Vision AI to recognize issues automatically and provide decision support tools for agents and technicians, or deliver visual self-service capabilities for customers.

Myth #5: Remote visual assistance is used mostly by contact centers

Remote support is a valuable addition to all customer service channels. Visual assistance technology saves time and costs, and facilitates a clear understanding of customer issues across all channels for faster and more efficient service. Contact center agents can perform joint triage in live sessions with the field service technician and the customer, sharing essential knowledge and customer history, and resolving issues without dispatching a technician.

Contactless services by remote technicians avoid the need for a visit, addressing increased customer health and safety concerns. With remote support, field service providers can guide customers to easy fixes, perform a virtual diagnosis for faster issue resolution and shorter onsite visits, and technicians can consult with a remote expert while in the field.

Other industries, such as insurance and financial institutions, and utility companies, are also getting on board with remote visual assistance technology.

Myth #6: Remote visual assistance is used for handling existing issues

Yes, it is – but it’s also a useful tool for taking proactive steps to predict technical issues. Using remote visual assistance, customer service providers can implement a Next Issue Avoidance (NIA) approach to anticipate the next potential problem. NIA is like troubleshooting in advance; being able to see possible future issues and address them while resolving an immediate issue. For example, an agent or remote technician could note that an electronic device is due for maintenance or identify parts that may soon need replacement. NIA is an effective strategy that reduces the costs of delivering support – while creating loyal customers.

The future is promising for remote visual assistance as an effective strategy and technology that goes beyond addressing and solving technical issues. Focusing on the impact, benefits, and potential of this emerging technology can open the door to exploring new ways to enhance customer service and support.

Liad Churchill, VP Product Marketing

Liad Churchill, VP Product Marketing

Artificial Intelligence and Deep Learning expert, Liad Churchill, brings depth of knowledge in marketing smart technologies.


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