Meet Help Lightning: Video streaming innovator and valued CI partner.
A few years back, Greg Wilson (Director of Service at CINCINNATI) was at a conference geared toward field service organizations. There were lectures, plenty of food and, of course, plenty of vendors. He had an item on his to-do list that week, which was to investigate merged reality technology. He found a few candidates, one of which was a company called Help Lightning. And after seeing the technology up close and talking to a Senior Consultant, Evans Manolis, Wilson instantly knew he could use it to save money and make CI customers happier.
Remote Field Service is a Reality.
Help Lightning’s front-and-center value proposition is “Be There Instantly,” and that’s precisely what the merged reality technology allows our service team to do. It’s a jaw-dropping demonstration, one many people would not have thought to be possible. It’s also much easier to show it than to tell it, so before we go any further, take a look at this video.
Wilson describes Help Lightning as “FaceTime on steroids,” which is a pretty solid way to put it. “If I hold my phone up and stick my hand into my camera’s field of view, my hand shows up on your phone screen. It merges the two video streams. I can also telestrate like John Madden, or upload images or diagrams. All you need is a smartphone and a connection.”
The real benefit, Wilson says, is just how much communication quality has increased on remote field service calls. “If it’s a phone call, sometimes you wonder if what you’re hearing is actually true,” he said. “You never want to say to someone, ‘That’s an impossible result,’ but you definitely want to see it for yourself. Since we started using Help Lightning, our troubleshooting process has been so much smoother because the information we get is better. It’s right there on screen.
“It also removes differences in nomenclature. The customer might call this thing a thingamajig, whereas I call it a whatchamacallit. Overall, it’s really helping us control costs and improving customer satisfaction at the same time.”
A Mutually Beneficial Collaboration
“CI is the perfect company to use our tech,” Manolis said. “They make a complex product that’s serviced by people out in the field, and there was a real need for people within CI to see what customers were seeing, even from thousands of miles away.
“Today, CINCINNATI is so much more than a customer... They’re a partner,” Manolis said. The last two FABTECH shows, we acted as CI’s strategic partner on the service side—right there in their booth. All of this was Greg’s doing. He’s had real vision and sees the technology as an innovator. He was the first to ask us to participate at an event in that way.”
The future looks bright—both for the technology and for the partnership. “Help Lightning is useful for everyone,” Wilson said. “A lot of our customers now cut down their training cycle because they can use this instead. Much less non-productive learning time that way.”