This month... Yale's smart security offering came under fire - after having to deal with "unplanned maintenance", Yale's app was temporarily unavailable and this glitch prevented customers from being able to get in and out of their homes, as well as from being able to arm and disarm their alarms.
Same here and @onemistert - there is a note on website saying network maintenance ongoing and may be so for 24 hours. Not so bloody SMART now is it!?!
— tootsietweets (@tootsieiam) October 10, 2018
How do outages affect brands?
Yale is a strong, trusted offline brand for home security - many UK homes use Yale for either their front door deadlines, security alarms or both. However, translating that trust over to their connected service has clearly been an uphill battle -
Wish I’d read this before buying anything.https://t.co/yikgzXyJ2h
— Tim Callcott (@Tim1989Callcott) October 13, 2018
In short - moving their proposition from a product to a service has presented a whole new host of issues that need to be tackled.
Ongoing service delivery requires an always-on approach to customer happiness, and that's an approach that can't be handled by humans alone. Shifting your approach from reactive to proactive is imperative for success, for for example, trigger-based alerts for downtime indicators so you can spot and fix issues before an end-user is even aware of it.
Every outage your customers encounter is another opportunity for them to lose faith in your brand, and with so many smart product and service players entering the market, your customers can easily easily switch services before building brand loyalty with you first.
Could this have been avoided?
Sure, Yale are able to argue that key fobs were still working, but that's not the service their customers are paying for.
With a proactive approach, yes - nearly all outages can be avoided, or at least managed better. Deploying devices in a real world setting to offer a service is messy and unpredictable, but using an operational management tool such as DevicePilot could alert Yale's development and operational teams in time before a serious outage, enabling them to quietly solve the issue or warn customers with enough notice to help keep their reputation and loyalty intact.