August 06, 2008

Kiosk Case Study - Remote Monitoring Pays Off

Nice case study on LogMeIn site covering recent deployment of Crown Mailing kiosks and their experience with the remote monitoring services needed and used for their self-service terminals.

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The Company
Crown Mailing Centers is a quickly expanding chain of pack-and-ship kiosks located in retail stores. Crown stores offer UPS, FedEx, DHL & US Postal services as well as a wide range of shipping supplies. This “store within a store” was the brainchild of Hallmark retirees Matt George and Jim Lembcke and started out in Hallmark Card Shops. In the span of 13 years, more than 300 mailing centers were opened and the concept has since expanded to drug stores and big box stores.

Strategy for success

Crown Mailing Centers is deploying its kiosks to drugstores at a rapid pace. Shipping can be a complex task, but the kiosks help simplify the many variables involved. And customers love the convenience of being able to ship the products they buy at the drugstores easily and quickly. This success means great growth and brand recognition for Crown, while presenting the challenge of scaling technology to provide maintenance and support to numerous locations.

Ben Cecka, technology/support director at Crown Mailing, knows every transaction is critical and that keeping the applications operational—and customers happy—is of prime importance. So when business started booming, he knew he needed an efficient and cost-effective way to manage this quickly growing network of self-service kiosks.

Already familiar with the LogMeIn name, Cecka found LogMeIn IT Reach via a Google search, and was pleased to discover LogMeIn IT Reach for supporting remote, unattended systems with ease. He decided that Crown Mailing would roll out IT Reach to 30 stores nationwide to remotely monitor and maintain the kiosks and assist their customers.

Supporting remote kiosks with ease

Right from the start, Cecka was pleased with IT Reach’s easy-to-use monitoring and management capabilities. “We established very quickly during the LogMeIn IT Reach trial that it was a great improvement over the solution we had been using,” he said. Technicians could now securely access the remote systems and diagnose and resolve any problems as if they were at the actual location, eliminating the need for expensive and time consuming service calls – either by phone or on-site. In fact, Cecka says, call times have been reduced by about 50%.

In addition, the ability to connect to the customer’s interface and walk them through each step of the transaction adds significant value to Crown Mailing, as well as to the retailer hosting the kiosk.

One of the IT Reach features that Crown Mailing finds most valuable is the Alerts, which can be set to monitor the performance of the kiosks and provide instant notification if there are any issues. This offers peace of mind since corrections can be made proactively and preventively, before problems occur. They use the Alerts feature extensively – particularly the application crash alert. According to Cecka, “The Alerts feature offer(s) us the ability to track the running of applications and to trigger alerts if key applications should crash.”

“The Alerts feature offers us the ability to track the running of applications and to automatically notify us if key applications should crash.”

–Ben Cecka, technology/support director, Crown Mailing Centers
“We are happy to entrust our kiosk maintenance to LogMeIn IT Reach”

More time-saving features of IT Reach include Group Administration, which helps Crown organize the machines in their account according to functional area, geography or designated technician, and Inventory Tracking &
Reporting, which allows them to automatically collect system data from all their machines from one central location.
Keeping hardware and software up to date with the correct versions and latest applications is critical when positioning for success. And there is no room for growing pains. That’s why Crown Mailing trusts IT Reach’s
Dashboard and Remote Control to giv their development and support teams the information they need to monitor, maintain and manage the kiosks remotely with ease, rather than monitoring each site in person 24/7.

Saying he is “happy to entrust our kiosk remote maintenance [to] LogMeIn IT Reach,” Cecka calls the experience with LogMeIn a positive one, and looks forward to continued success serving more satisfied customers in less time, and reducing travel, support time and headcount costs.

Expand the Reach of IT

LogMeIn IT Reach offers a powerful remote administration toolkit that has all the features needed to manage remote kiosks, POS machines, and digital signage proactively and solve problems quickly… all from one location. Systems administrators monitor and maintain systems whether they are attended or not, so there’s no need to schedule time with end users to get the job done.

Increase Your Reach

Try LogMeIn IT Reach… Free
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About LogMeIn, Inc.
LogMeIn offers a suite of remote access and support solutions that provide instant, secure connections between remote PCs over the Web. Powered by the LogMeIn Gateway, the service has applications for desktop remote
control, data backup, file sharing, remote system administration, and ondemand customer support.

Posted by staff at August 6, 2008 01:33 PM