Smartphone Scanning Workflows Improve Service and Productivity

US telecommunications provider, Cincinnati Bell replaced dedicated scanners and cumbersome cables for their field service technicians with Scandit’s keyboard wedge on Samsung smartphones. The move to Scandit-powered barcode scanning raised employee productivity during service calls, improving customer service.

Brian Golden profile
Our service technicians love using the keyboard wedge from Scandit. We’ve achieved improved scanning accuracy in all conditions and made our service calls shorter.
Brian Golden, Vice President – Field Operations, Cincinnati Bell

Challenge

Replace cumbersome field service equipment to speed up service calls

Cincinnati Bell’s technicians recorded equipment activations with dedicated barcode scanning devices attached to laptops with 3-foot USB cables, during service calls. These traditional scanners captured the barcodes on the equipment and relayed the information back to a provisioning system that had to be accessed from the laptop.

This approach presented logistical complications for the technicians because the equipment had to be situated near the laptop. Additionally, poor lighting made it difficult for the barcodes to be read by the scanner. Also, barcodes which were damaged required manual entry that resulted in errors. These issues necessitated that Cincinnati Bell’s technicians step out of the customer’s home or office, and step inside their vehicle to capture barcodes and activate the equipment.

This approach only extended the length of the service calls, causing inconveniences for both the customer and Cincinnati Bell’s field staff. The business knew that this had to change if the quality of service had to improve, and the duration of service calls shortened.

Solution

Introduce high-performance barcode scanning on smartphones – with no IT development

Cincinnati Bell decided to provide a smartphone-based workflow for their service technicians. They initially decided to use the basic camera functionality of a smartphone to scan the barcodes, but discovered that the scanning performance was slow and inaccurate. Since the company provided Samsung Galaxy S8 smartphones to their service technicians, they selected Scandit’s Keyboard Wedge application, which turns a smart device into an enterprise-grade barcode scanner – without making any app changes or requiring any integrations.

Now, by merely touching the scan button on the smartphone, Cincinnati Bell’s service technicians can scan the barcode on the customer’s equipment to record equipment activations, in any environment or lighting conditions.

We started using Keyboard Wedge right away without needing to make any changes to our provisioning system, and Scandit continues to give us any guidance and support that we need right away.

Brian Golden, Vice President – Field Operations, Cincinnati Bell

Results

Faster service calls with improved scanning, increases productivity

Since deploying Scandit’s keyboard wedge barcode scanning solution, Cincinnati Bell has improved customer service and employee productivity during service calls in homes and offices. Says Brian, “Our service technicians love using the keyboard wedge from Scandit. We’ve achieved improved scanning accuracy in all conditions and made our service calls shorter.”

Critical success factors for the Cincinnati Bell-Scandit partnership:

  • Fast, accurate barcode scanning is immediately enabled on smart devices without needing to make changes to provisioning systems.
  • Expert guidance and technical support was provided right away.
  • A new smartphone-based mobile workflow for service technicians makes service calls shorter.

As a company that literally goes into people’s homes and offices, Cincinnati Bell appreciates the importance of the human element in what they do. By replacing an outdated service activation process with a flexible mobile scanning workflow, Cincinnati Bell improved overall productivity along with customer and employee satisfaction.

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