Imagine being a food and beverage producer on the island of Réunion in the Indian Ocean. You have access to a wide range of tropical fruits and spices for your product line. Réunion is an overseas region of France, so you can easily export to the European Union. There is one catch: when you need technical support the service engineer must fly in from mainland France, 12 hours away by plane.
New technologies have changed the picture completely and removed this downtime. When a Tetra Pak customer experienced a stop on their juice production line, they knew the fastest way to get help was to call Remote Support. They were immediately put in touch with Remote Support Specialist Kevin Bermudez.
The stop was due to a transversal sealing error. In less than one hour Kevin found out the root cause: a malfunction of the TPIH generator. The producer did not have another one in stock, so they ordered a replacement. It arrived during the weekend, and by Monday the issue was solved.
Kevin tells the story: “In this case the company did not have a replacement TPIH generator in stock, so the engineer would probably have stayed many days – and customer operations would certainly not have started back up on Monday.
“While troubleshooting, I found out that one of the automation components (the pluto system) also needed attention. Using the visual assistance tool, I was able to see the customer’s computer and guide him as he downloaded the program.”
By intervening at key moments as the parts arrived, Kevin was able to get the line working optimally and minimise downtime. Moreover, this example shows that Remote Support is helping customers with a range of issues: from simple problems such as parts replacements, all the way up to complex software downloads.
Kevin adds that Remote Support can be just as useful for customers in mainland France. “The response is very fast with Remote Support – in one minute or less, our customers receive help. It is without any doubt the fastest way to get their lines up and running again.”
Not only does Remote Support help producers faster, but it also decreases travel costs and CO2 emissions. Moreover, by solving issues quickly it reduces product losses – an important benefit in a world where food security is of growing concern.
Thomas Aul, Remote Support Hub Leader EMEA (Europe, Middle East & Africa) leads one of three hubs. The other two cover Asia and the Americas. “We have about 35 remote support specialists around the world who deliver a 24/7 service. It doesn’t matter when customers call; they are guaranteed to get a person who can help.”
This year Tetra Pak’s Remote Support service expects to handle 6,500 cases, with an overall resolution rate of 90%. “Customers say the service is quick, helpful and easy to contact,” Thomas says. “We regularly send out a survey, and the average rating is 8.9 out of 10.”
Customers have a choice of technology to access the service: telephone, email, and chat. They also have phone numbers for their areas to avoid long-distance charges, and there is a single worldwide WhatsApp number. By using chat, customers can exchange text, photos and videos. Remote Support also uses Visual Assistant, a virtual channel with real-time assisted interaction.
Moreover, the service is offered in over 100 languages. The new technologies provide automatic language translation, both text-to-text and voice-to-text in real time.
The specialists working with Remote Support have strong technical backgrounds and additional training in remote delivery methods. They are supported by the latest technologies, such as AI search, the sum of up-to-date technical information for the specific equipment and swarm intelligence (SI).
“I’m a field service engineer, specialising in filling machines,” Kevin concludes. “I have automation expertise, and I have been trained on the new remote support tools. I find it a very good experience to work with people all over the world!”
Minimise your production downtime, disruption, and costs with our faster, more efficient Remote Support service. Our teams of world-class experts are closer to you than ever before. It’s a modern, flexible solution that offers consistency and high-quality support, wherever you are in the world.