Guest Column | May 31, 2017

Transforming Field Service With Augmented Reality

By Steve Luong, Sr. Director, Marketing, Kony Inc.

As more field service organizations turn to technology to drive business, augmented reality (AR) is one of the latest trends to shake up the industry. Goldman Sachs predicts that virtual and augmented reality will be an $80 billion market by 2025. Gartner lists augmented reality among the critical technologies that businesses should prioritize to meet the rapidly increasing demands of digital business innovation. It’s clear that AR has piqued the interest of the enterprise.

As the benefits of AR are relatively unproven in the field services industry, and there are a few formidable barriers to adoption, it is understandable that many field service organizations may not see the need to invest in it right now. The process of capturing and inputting the necessary data for an AR overlay is complex as every system is unique to each individual environment, and it demands a significant amount of pre-work which scales up with larger facilities. Integration with backend systems can also prove difficult because it requires Internet of Things (IoT) connectivity to transfer data between various systems. An even greater challenge lies in the workforce’s ability to actually use the technology, which often requires training and a complete shift in habits. The adoption of new technologies can be especially difficult for organizations with an older workforce that may find it challenging to adjust to a completely new, digitally-focused set of processes. However, it’s important to consider that AR is not simply the solution to a technical problem. Technology helps provide the digital platform to help companies define which type of AR is required in the right context at the right time to solve business problems.


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