Meet the Two Entrepreneurs Bringing Visual Support To the CRM Industry

The ViiBE platform, created by Marc Prempain and Charles Demée, connects support agents or technical experts with customers via a real-time, enriched video call in just three clicks

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French entrepreneurs Marc Prempain and Charles Demée launched ViiBE's visual support and knowledge management web technology in 2017 to solve complex customer issues within pre-sales and after-sales services. ViiBE, which directly integrates into any CRM, saves all video call interactions to create knowledge bases that promote both employee and customer self-service.

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Standard support exchanges through CRM systems depend on communication methods like email and standard phone calls, which are inadequate to solve complex problems. For complex customer problems, these channels do not provide accurate diagnostics and are not useful for helping customers solve problems remotely. As a result, companies often send field personnel to the customer's site to resolve the issue directly. Realizing this inefficiency, and with widespread travel restrictions in place, Zendesk reported that 64 per cent of customers used a new support channel in 2020, and 73 per cent plan to keep using it.

One such support channel that has grown in popularity due to its efficiency is visual support solutions like ViiBE. This platform connects support agents or technical experts with customers via a real-time, enriched video call in just three clicks, on any device, and without download. This visual support tool eliminates unnecessary movement of field support staff while increasing first call resolution rates (FCR) and improving customer satisfaction.

How did this tool become the leading remote assistance solution in Europe?

The first version of ViiBE was a Web app solution developed for emergency medical services. The vision was to ensure that the public population could access appropriate medical treatment anywhere and in a single click. In an emergency, you can't take the time to download an app. That's why Charles and Marc initially focused their efforts on accessibility. This became a core feature that distinguished ViiBE, and the company continued to maintain accessibility as one of the values at the heart of ViiBE's DNA as it grew to become the number one European solution for remote assistance.

After ViiBE moved from emergency services to technical support, the organization successfully penetrated the household and after-sales services market. Distinct from video conferencing tools which permit multiple parties to interact face-to-face and remotely, visual support solutions target business operational demands. Visual support aims to connect people to remote subject-matter experts (SMEs) so they can collaborate, diagnose, and fix problems without spending time or money to send a field operator to the worksite.

ViiBE's enhanced offer stands out from its competitors due to its Web app technology, which provides a smooth process to connect all parties to the video call. After the innovation of the WebRTC protocol that launched in 2013, which let users launch video calls directly from web browsers, ViiBE co-founders Marc Prempain and Charles Demée clarified to the market how their web technology differs from applications such as Zoom and Google Hangouts. Subsequently, ViiBE became the world's first business to deliver a video assistance solution for any device and without download, in September 2017 following the release of iOS 11. This web technology provides proximity and immediacy to remote issues in complex environments such as offshore sites.

ViiBE, which was awarded the "best remote assistance solution in Europe" by Frost & Sullivan in June 2021, integrates with all types of IT ecosystems. It operates business in over 70 countries around the world for notable accounts including Total, Air France, SBM Offshore, Allianz Partners, and RATP.

How does ViiBE's seamless interoperability with CRMs benefit support agents?

ViiBE integrates seamlessly into pre-existing workflows, so support agents that are used to working with a specific CRM don't have to change their habits. Indeed, it has always been part of ViiBE's roadmap to interoperate with its customers' IT ecosystems, such as IBM Maximo, or Microsoft Dynamics. With the Covid-19 pandemic, the need intensified and customers made new integration requests for ViiBE's CRM partners.

By integrating ViiBE with CRM single sign-on security, they were able to respond quickly to CRM integration requests. As a result, users had automatic access to ViiBE's platform from the moment they logged into their company's CRM software. ViiBE's seamless integration makes it easy for CRM users to view the tool as an extension in the features of their existing tools rather than as entirely new software to integrate into their workflow. This user-focused strategy helped ViiBE achieve comprehensive user adoption of its solution. Simultaneously, the usefulness of ViiBE's integration has prompted users to continue to use ViiBE and fully integrate its features into their support interactions.

During ViiBE calls, the expert or support agent can clearly see the problem that the customer is experiencing as well as the environment surrounding the issue. From there, the expert has access to several AR and collaborative tools that can help them better diagnose and solve the problem. Some features include live photo and document annotations, a collaborative whiteboard, screen sharing, and AR laser pointers for the live video feed. As a result, the experts and agents can provide exceptional support with results such as lower ticket handling times, higher first call resolution rates, fewer resources required to solve problems, and better customer satisfaction.

How can visual support turn CRMs into a knowledge base?

After a ViiBE call directly from a CRM platform, any documents, messages, videos, and photos shared before, during, or after the call are saved and accessible directly from the support ticket. As a result, over time the ticket archives comprise a detailed source of information that can be used for training current as well as new support agents. Users can find specific information by searching for specific keywords and reviewing the recorded customer interaction to learn or alternate best practices. The end result is that existing tickets form an internal knowledge base at the disposal of all support agents, who can search for information when it suits them. By empowering employees with access to knowledge, they will gain new skills and feel increasingly confident to succeed at their job.

Across industries, customers will always encounter new and complicated issues prompting them to reach out to customer support. In tandem, support agents will continue using CRM solutions to provide assistance and solve customer problems remotely. Therefore, it's both relevant and profitable to use the experience and knowledge of support agents to create a free knowledge base that supports employee growth and satisfaction.

Resultantly, the ticket archives will continue to update and enrich the knowledge management base provided through ViiBE's platform, so support agents can continue to develop their skills and become more self-sufficient. Similarly, the stored knowledge can be extracted to create customer forums and support guides for common problems in order to promote customer self-service. This is an increasingly important step as Zendesk reported that customers want companies to empower them to help themselves: 69% of customers want to resolve issues on their own if possible.

How did ViiBE's CRM integration help Decathlon in mid-2020?

Following the first Covid-19 lockdown in France, After-sales Director of Decathlon and Domyos, Benoit Lacayrouze, noted that "customers are proud when they manage to repair their own products, and business-wise, it saves money since sending technicians on-site is extremely expensive." Lacayrouze then clarified that using ViiBE's integration in Zendesk support helped Decathlon's after-sales service teams successfully divide the number of support agents sent into the field to support customers on-site by six.

Beyond the valuable benefits of empowering both support agents and clients to resolve complex problems more quickly and efficiently, CRM video support also contributes to the companies' CSR strategies by reducing dispatch worker CO2 emissions. By deploying the solution within more and more user communities of its CRM partners, ViiBE's impact will continue to multiply rapidly.