No matter whether you run out of gas, get a flat tire, the battery is dead, or you have a breakdown or accident, immediate help is just a button push away. From self-service to interactive remote diagnostics and troubleshooting, the mobile service technicians, towing services or repairs in certified workshops – Volkswagen's mobility services coordinate assistance and deliver the right solutions on-demand, wherever needed. Over 3,000 automated decision trees map out all possible scenarios to support VW’s global assistance program which promotes their company image and increases customer loyalty with quality-assured individual solutions.
It is not only an obligation, but also part of our self-image to support customers quickly, effectively and individually in the event of a breakdown. Together with our long-standing technology partner USU, we have succeeded in implementing a knowledge-based system that meets the highest standards.
Daniel Beck, AUDI AG
The Volkswagen Group, headquartered in Wolfsburg, Germany, is one of the world's leading automakers and the largest carmaker in Europe. More than 670,000 employees around the globe produce vehicles, are involved in vehicle-related services or work in other business areas. The Volkswagen Group offers its vehicles in 153 countries. In the area of customer service, Volkswagen has relied on the expertise and technology of USU for decades.
Customer service for technical problems is a central component of Volkswagen's sophisticated service concept, which has been systematically expanded over the years. If worst comes to worst, customers expect fast, accurate assistance from a single source to keep them mobile in the event of an accident or breakdown. It is important that the human link in the service chain from the agent in the operations control center to the specialized Volkswagen mechanic works flawlessly though in many cases, remote assistance can enable drivers to get back on the road.
The central components of the roadside assistance service are an intelligent knowledge base and comprehensive, high-performance diagnostic tool. This automatically transfers the required vehicle data to the knowledge base and optimizes troubleshooting. Another requirement for rapid solution support is the seamless integration with Salesforceto combine customer, vehicle and support data. All of this is made possible by USU's technologies and the comprehensive concept developed jointly by USU and VW.
In order to meet the high requirements and the demand for excellent service with country-specific content, dozens of languages and complex technology, an intensive conception phase was critical for success. A wide range of ideas had to be collected, evaluated, clustered and prioritized. For example, the system had be able to identify the vehicle by VIN number as well as send the error codes, transfering both to Salesforce. That data is combined and sent through the automated troubleshooting and solution process in USU‘s knowledge management software to identify the solution within seconds.
A particular challenge was the often very complex decision trees with more than 30 if-then branches, which had to be near instantaneous and accurate. An import/export interface was to translate the content in XML format automatically and ad hoc into the required language. Country specifics such as driving regulations are changed, checked and released via market approval editorial processes. In addition to this country-specific scaling, there were further adjustments such as the search function in the Asian countries.
After implementation, a number of additional customer requirements arose which were evaluated and successively implemented during regular online conferences and status meetings. Today, the system inspires all those involved in the process and has turned VW's roadside assistance into a global example of excellent customer service.
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