Ford dealerships across the USA now have access to state-of-the-art remote viewing technology allowing them to receive real-time assistance for customer repairs from team members at the Ford Technical Assistance Centre (TAC) in Dearborn.
“The remote technology is designed to assist the technicians as they’re working on vehicles – with the goal of increasing efficiency and decreasing down time for customers,” said David Green, Ford general service equipment program specialist. “This technology modernises and simplifies our operations, benefiting everyone involved.”
The technology, known as See What I See (SWIS), uses remote assistance software allows the technical assistance team to see what the dealership tech is seeing while they work on the vehicle in real time. SWIS’ augmented reality capability allows TAC team members to display modified or enhanced images on the headset for the dealer technicians to view.
At the TAC headquarters, a team of about 150 technicians receives about 5,000 calls from dealership technicians across the U.S. each week looking for support or answers regarding a variety of issues. Of those, about 200 cannot be diagnosed by phone; field agents must be sent out to check out the issue in person. “SWIS definitely helps get our customers back on the road more quickly. We’ve had some wiring situations that we were able to fix in a few hours versus a few days using See What I See,” said Susan Padro, Service Manager at a Apopka Florida dealership.
Ford has activated 1200 of the headsets so far with more than 350 SWIS calls to TAC in the last 90 days. All US-based dealers should have SWIS in their toolbox by November of this year.
Other uses include gaining prior approval before replacing a windscreen by sending photos of the defect, fleets are looking to assist a technician on site with certain electric vehicle repairs instead of sending an engineer and mobile service teams are also looking at using SWIS to remote train where using the headset between an instructor and a student is another valuable use case to avoid having to attend a distant training centre.
This article courtesy of Russell Thrall III, publisher CollisionWeek. Check out the website at: www.collisionweek.com.