Cast your mind back to the early 2020 or prior and a typical airport scene will remind you of large customs/immigration/security checkpoint queues, passengers sitting shoulder-to-shoulder at gate lounges, etc. Likewise for grocery stores, hospitals, public sector offices, retail spaces, and more.
However, scenarios that were commonplace at many places in recent years pose a grave challenge now in ensuring social distancing. Moreover, waiting rooms and lobbies can be stressful places for people - the nature of checking in and having to be confined to a waiting spot often causes anxiety and uncertainty. If they are accompanied by kids or elderly, who need constant attention, waiting can be a further daunting experience.
Most passengers or customers will want answers to questions such as ‘How long are the check-in queues?’ or ‘Which are the least crowded spots in which to wait?’ or ‘Where I can spend some time in the best shopping area and is there any shopping fest or discount on?’ before setting foot inside the premises. Predicting and measuring passenger movement and densities – when they arrive, where they wait and how they choose to congregate – and using that data to manage people flow and distribution, will therefore be of utmost importance to service providers. Social distancing-friendly queuing systems such as Virtual Queue Management (VQM) systems are thus emerging as the need of the hour.
Virtual queuing management system: How it works
Figure 1 illustrates how a VQM system works:
Figure 1: A virtual queue management system
Virtual queuing is the need of many industries
The right VQM system can not only help smoothen the waiting period but also enhance it with value-additions such as integrating the in-premises shopping and dining services through the VQM app to provide a superior end-to-end customer-friendly experience. Service providers can also unlock opportunities of increasing revenue by advertising on the displays/digital signage in waiting rooms, and on applications created for VQM. Virtual queuing is the best fit for many industries such as:
In future, the travel industry is likely to embrace a global one touch ID for passengers where VQM plays an important role of integrating with biometrics and geo-fencing features for touchless, queue-less, seamless, fast “wings to fly” experience.
The big benefits of virtual queuing system
Virtual queuing aims to make the service experience great even before customer’s first step inside premises. Here are some of the key benefits of virtual queuing to both service providers and customers:
For instance, Delta Airlines recently added a virtual queuing feature on the Fly Delta app that notifies passengers when their seat is boarding.i
Empowering customers and boosting efficiencies
Virtual queuing empowers customers to take control over their journey with a service provider – freeing them from being confined to a line or at any other point inside the premises. Greater control, visibility and peace of mind helps transform their time into an experience worth exploring.
For service providers, a VQM system offers a differentiated operational context. By integrating a VQM system with customer forecasting, density management, and resource management systems, service providers can boost operational efficiencies in real-time. For instance, analyzing VQM data can help airport authorities to optimize gate allocations to maximize separation, and separate incoming baggage across multiple belts, while accommodating the flight volume.
In the pre-COVID era, service providers typically relied on domain experience and historical data to forecast customer volumes at any given time. But today, they have to consider many new variables like social distancing, additional health screenings, sanitization of premises, etc. The only way for service providers to make truly accurate planning decisions will be by basing them on real-time information and a VQM system will be a key provider of the same.
The onus of getting customers back in business in the new reality will rest on service provider’s ability to deliver a futuristic customer experience that is not only smarter but safer and seamless too.
Delivering superior virtual queue experience
Wipro’s Digital Compact Virtual Queue Management (CO-Q) solution is part of our Health COV-ER Safe Workspace Suite powered by SMART i-connectTM IoT platform. This VQM solution provides a superior digital virtual queuing experience by integrating with all other services and IoT devices. Based on a SaaS based subscription pricing model, it offers service providers an opportunity to reimagine their customer experience delivery cost-effectively - not just in the immediate post-COVID context but also in the long run.
The CO-Q solution can also be leveraged to enable other functions such as global one-touch ID token-based entry at airports and other locations.
Learn how Wipro can help you deliver a futuristic customer experience that is not only smarter but safer and seamless, cost-effectively. Reach out to us at firstname.lastname@example.org
i Future Travel Experience, Delta Airlines Launches Virtual Queueing for Boarding, https://www.futuretravelexperience.com/2020/01/delta-air-lines-launches-virtual-queueing-for-boarding/
Managing Consultant, Wipro
Vaishali has 15+ years of experience as a trusted advisor. She is responsible for global consulting for IoT and Smart Cities portfolio cutting across verticals. Vaishali has experience in business strategy, opportunity assessment, financial modelling and business case development.
You can reach Vaishali at email@example.com