The Process of Customization

Can a vending machine save a life? Can a vending machine make you happy? Can a vending machine solve world peace? We think vending machines can do anything. It’s why we created one for Facebook that included bike parts, so employees could get to and from work easier. And one with safety equipment for Delta Air Lines, so their staff could focus more on fixing planes. We take the problems that plague the world’s leading innovators, and we turn them into money-saving custom vending solutions.

How Intel got a power surge.  

Intel is a great example of how custom vending machines solve big productivity slowdowns. If you’ve ever worked in a large corporation and waited a half-day or more for a new computer, you’ll relate. Getting a PC upgraded, repaired or replaced has been a major sticking point for decades. The typical process involves a help desk, filling out a ticket and a visit to the service center followed by long wait times while you sit idle without your computer.

IVM sat down with Intel executives to talk through their problems in order to design a unique solution. What resulted was the IVM Smart Station™ “grab-and-go” lockers, where Intel employees can get a new PC any time of the day or night. Employees choose when to pick up their new PCs, when to configure them and when to turn in the old ones. They can also set up everything using a wired or wireless network. As many as 10,000 employees have used the new Smart Stations, and IT expenses are down by 30 percent.

For Intel, IVM also designed an easy self-setup in conjunction with the lockers. An employee simply plugs in a USB stick they retrieve from the locker, powers on the machine and it automatically begins the installation process. In addition, employees can also install IT-supported applications and personalize their settings with a “Workspace Moves with Me” initiative, which uses cloud services to mirror the user’s workspace from one device to another.

Customization is key.

When you special-order a car from the factory, it’s exciting to choose the extra features like a moon roof, leather seats or that luggage rack that conveniently holds a snowboard. While you can’t get a moon roof in a Smart Station (yet), you can customize other features. If your company already has a RFID system in place, employees can use that same card to swipe and get products. But IVM can also build something specific, such as a keypad where you enter a code.

No two Smart Stations are exactly alike. In fact, the first step for anyone wanting to incorporate intelligent vending is to decide which products they want inside. Yes, the machines are a certain heighth and width and there are four different locker sizes to choose from, but inside the box is completely custom. For Delta Air Lines, that meant carving out the space for safety equipment. For someone else, it might mean making room for IT supplies such as keyboards or power cords. Once a company decides what to vend, IVM draws up the plans for it. But the customization doesn’t stop there. Companies often add their names and logos, a tagline or campaign line and brand-reflective graphics to the IVM Smart Stations, to make them uniquely theirs.

How would you customize a Smart Station?