By, Josh Bowcott, Product Manager, Oracle Service Cloud
The “Internet of Things” (IoT) is no longer a cool buzz word. IoT, in one way or another, is now ingrained in everyday life. Connected devices are all around us and allow us to track health stats or manage home energy usage for efficiency. Vehicles can now alert us of potential problems and household items notify us of upcoming maintenance needed. The list of possibilities goes on and on. In fact, analysts estimate there will be 20.8 billion connected devices by 2020. But, how do we relate IoT devices and apply the data they provide, to a service interaction that can help your business?
Digital disruption is not new and has presented itself to the service environment in many forms over the past few years including Mobile, Social Media, Cloud and Big Data. IoT, is the next digital disruption. As with each prior disruption, there are many new opportunities created by IoT. For example, businesses can use IoT to grow revenue by creating new service offerings, better customer experiences and value-add services such as remote diagnostics, preventative maintenance or automatic resolution. Businesses can reduce costs, increase efficiency and operational improvements by increasing the use of self-solve, decreasing returns and having fewer truck rolls.
A connected IoT device transmits telemetry data, the data is then used to gain insight into the condition and operational aspects of the device. As real-time data is captured and processed from an IoT device, such as an industrial HVAC unit, sensors on an assembly line or an automobile’s engine, anomalies can be detected or conditions where the IoT device has fallen out of an acceptable threshold of operation.
Once an alert is raised the data can be used to analyze the state of the current device, gleaning insightful information and determine the next best action to take.
Engaging the right resources at the right time is absolutely key for a fast, successful resolution. The plan of action could involve an agent sending knowledge on how to install a replacement part, communicate bi-directionally with the device to alter configuration settings or reset the device. Should all the self-service and remote access assisted-service options fail to address the issue, a field service agent can be dispatched to address the issue on-site.
When an incident is raised in Oracle Service Cloud from an IoT enabled device, this interaction is treated as a channel…an IoT channel. The telemetry data from the machine is used to proactively raise a service incident without the need for a human interaction, often without the device owner even knowing there was an issue.
Businesses can choose how to incorporate these interactions into the operations of their call center by following the “IoT Enabled Time to Value – A Multi-Step Approach” (see below).
Each value step presents new ways to approach responding to an IoT interaction. In forthcoming blogs, I will break down steps in detail with examples and approaches your business can leverage to incorporate an IoT-channel into your customer service experience. Your business can easily accommodate the changes needed to embrace the world of IoT, make IoT data actionable and accessible within your customer care team!