Volvo CE boosts uptime with virtual real-time tech support in the field


To diagnose and resolve potential machine issues even faster than before, Volvo Construction Equipment is enabling dealer field technicians to connect directly to their back office product specialists, as well as Volvo product experts and engineers, through a live augemented reality video feed.

Volvo CE is offering dealer field technicians across Europe, the Middle East, Africa and Oceania, the option to communicate directly with Volvo product experts and engineers while on site.

Via a real-time tech support app on their phone, field technicians can initiate an interactive video call with their dealer back office staff and invite a Volvo product expert and engineer, if required, to provide more expertise in diagnosing and resolving an issue.

The augmented reality technology allows all parties involved to see exactly what the field technician sees and point to components on the screen. Furthermore, these calls can be recorded and saved for reference in case further investigation is required.

“In the past, when a field technician needed more help to diagnose and fix an issue, they might take some photos, go back to the dealership and talk to colleagues or a arrange a call with the Volvo product support team. This could result in multiple visits to the jobsite and frustrating downtime for the customer,” says Aram Ibrahim, head of uptime support at Volvo CE.

“Now, field technicians can benefit from the expertise of their colleagues as if they were at the customer’s site with them. Up to four people can all see and discuss the same component, point to certain things on the screen, make suggestions to try this and that and see the behaviour of the machine in real time. We speed up fault tracing, minimise travel and get the machine back on the job much sooner.”

Ever closer collaboration

Even the most durably designed machines will experience the occasional technical issue and strong teamwork between manufacturers and dealers is essential to resolve them as quickly as possible, safeguarding customers’ productivity and profitability.

Volvo CE and its dealers are committed to close and efficient collaboration as one extended enterprise and over the last few years have implemented a common case handling system. This has significantly improved dealer service technicians’ access to information and support and resulted in more vital feedback reaching Volvo R&D teams.

“Real-time Tech Support is the next step in our collaboration together for industry-leading uptime. It is also a part of our digitalization journey and we are excited to see how this could pave the way for future technologies like smart glasses or the ability to see inside structures. But for the moment, Real-time Tech Support will improve our efficiency even more and maximise machine uptime,” Aram concludes.

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Saul Wordsworth is deputy editor of the iVT brand - which includes digital and print editions of a quarterly magazine and Off-Highway Annual, as well as He is a keen cyclist and lives in north London.

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