Smart Vending on College Campuses

When people think of college vending machines, they often envision traditional snacks and sodas being dispensed during late night study sessions at the library or between classes. But did you know some campuses are strategically investing in automated smart vending machines to distribute tech products like headphones, chargers and streaming devices? Here’s a look at how one university has been providing real-time access to technology while also improving its IT workflow processes:

IVM recently partnered with Fairfield University in Connecticut to help the school’s IT department offer convenient access to technology for its students, faculty and staff. The university IT team wanted to improve customer service by finding a way to provide faster, secure, and on-demand access to important products that students and staff could use to get their work done or find entertainment.

By leveraging IVM’s flagship smart vending machine, SmartStation, Fairfield University and IVM worked together to identify the optimal location on campus and the most popular products to stock including Apple products, chargers, headphones, and streaming devices, and launched a pilot program to test out the on-campus tech vending machine.

So far, the machine has been a hit on campus, with students and staff purchasing and accessing technology products in a matter of minutes, even after campus stores are closed. In just three months, the vending machine had more than $3,000 in sales.

In addition to easy device distribution that boosted student and staff satisfaction, IVM’s SmartStation on Fairfield University’s campus gives the university IT team the ability to manage stock and spend closely through IVM’s SmartHub reporting tools. The analytics help track machine inventory levels and provide data on which products are being utilized most.

“Fairfield University’s partnership with IVM has streamlined the University’s ability to provide students with on-demand access to tech products with the installation of one of IVM’s vending machines,” said John Carroll, CIO, Fairfield University. “This exciting partnership has also allowed the University to stock Apple products for the first time. Students now have access to popular hardware such as headphones and chargers during the hours the University Bookstore is closed.”

IVM SmartSolutions can transform higher education IT by increasing efficiency for front-end users and saving valuable time for IT teams on the back-end. There are a number of use cases across our portfolio of university clients—check out this one with another client, the University of Indianapolis—and there are endless opportunities to customize based on your needs. Reach out to us for a conversation about your higher education IT needs!

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