4 cases where robots are part of the customer service approach
1. Robot recognises products and guides you through the store
Lowe, a retail store based in San Jose, California, is experimenting with a robot to upgrade their customer service. The robot has an inventory of all the products in the store. For instance, a customer can show the robot a certain type of nail. The robot will scan the product and recognize it. The robot knows whether the product is on stock and guides the customer to the product in the store.
Check out this movie to see the robot in action:
2. Robots rule in this Chinese restaurant
In this Chinese restaurant both food and drinks are served by robots. The waiters have been replaced by bots in this case:
The question is, though, how will people react to these robots. Maybe it would be interesting to create a restaurant concept where both people and robots work side by side. The human waiters could connect and chat with the customers while the robot acts as the perfect sommelier and gives advice about wine. Or the robot could serve the food whereas the waiters take your order.
3. A robot delivers your room service in ALoft hotels
ALoft hotels use a ‘Botlr’ nowadays. The Botlr is a robot that delivers the guests’ room service. ALoft are cool hotels. They try to give you a great price/quality ratio and go to great lengths to create a cool atmosphere. The Botlr is part of this hotel experience.
4. A robot to create time for customers in this pharmacy in Ghent
In this local pharmacy in Ghent (Belgium), a robot is helping the staff save time. Behind the scenes, the robot organizes the entire stock. When new products arrive, the robot sorts them out and arranges them on the shelves. When a customer wants a certain medication, the pharmacists types in the product name on the computer. In the back office, the robot takes the right product from the shelf and a few seconds later, the product pops up at the counter. In the ‘old’ days, the pharmacist had to go find the product himself and carry it to the counter. Thanks to the robot, the pharmacist now has more time to speak to the customers. Automating the operational tasks leaves more time for added value conversations with the clients. By the way, this particular pharmacy is run by my sister-in-law. If you are in the neighborhood, pay her a visit and ask to see her robot.
Robots and actual people
I truly believe in the combination of robots (automation) and actual people. In my opinion, if we can create time and resources to connect with clients through robots , I think that is the perfect combination.
If you run into other cool examples of robots helping out in customer service then please drop me a line in the comments of my blog. Thanks!