This second wave of the COVID-19 pandemic was widely expected. From the sanitary point of view, much was invested during the most acute phase of the emergency (March-April); however, subsequently, not much progress was made. Let us think of the uncertainty that still hangs over the timing of the vaccines or the difficulties in tracing and monitoring contacts with positive individuals (the Immune App has been ineffective). If we look at the situation from an industrial point of view, however, it still seems to prevail a kind of hope in a return to „the world as it was before”.
Several years before the changes taking place, Spai had launched and developed the Help4Tech service for the remote maintenance of automatic machines, with the help of smartglasses and highly competent technicians able to communicate correctly in different languages, since they are native speakers. A service like this, in a time when travelling is at least not recommended if not impossible, should be activated by all companies that have machines installed abroad.
There was time to prepare, between the first and second waves, but did Italian companies take advantage of it? We talk about it with Fabio Farneti, CEO of Spai.
“Few have done so. During the lockdown we listened to many companies, even big ones, promise turns in this direction. On the other hand, the costs and risks of sending a technician abroad today are very high: in addition to the risks to personal health, we also think of quarantine and flight blocks. Yet words are often not followed by actions”.
“Because when you go to touch certain areas of the company, resistance to change is strong. Let me explain; a travel technician has interest in continuing to go abroad because the daily allowance is much higher than the normal one. So some technicians see in these new remote maintenance services the end of some of their privileges”.
Can you give us an example?
“Just in the last few weeks of September we solved a problem with a machine installed in a country outside the continent, thanks to our Help4Tech service, while the technician from the parent company, who had requested to go away and said it was impossible to intervene remotely, was unable to find a solution”.
With Help4Tech it is possible to install, validate and intervene remotely on automatic machines anywhere in the world, a service that companies should also consider regardless of the health emergency in which we found ourselves. Is that so?
“Of course, it is a service that we have been offering for several years now. The question is always the same: why do I have to send a technician on the other side of the world to solve a problem on a machine when I can solve that problem from here, or at least, I can be able to make a much more precise diagnosis of the problem so that I can intervene in a ‘surgical’ way? The technological tools are mature, broadband connections, high definition smartglasses, and the manufacturer’s technician can guide the customer’s technician remotely without any problem. We also provide professionals in their mother-tongue, avoiding the difficulties that can derive from linguistic misunderstandings”.
Today’s healthcare situation should convince even the most reluctant to change.
“It should. But it is as if companies are waiting for the world to return to exactly the way it was before. And I would add, they believe it will all be resolved in the short term. But I’m afraid that the timescale is longer than what we see on television and that the change in working habits is an unstoppable process”.