It's All About Customer Service
Atlas moves even further ahead with customer service and embraces the hand-held digital revolution with the release of moveAtlas™, our free, "all-about-moving" application for iPhone, iPad, iPod touch and Android devices. It's easy-to-use, easy-to-get and available to anyone — not just Atlas customers. A simple download from the App Store or Android Market, and moveAtlas is yours.
Offering an exciting app to the public is a natural extension of a company recognized nationally as the top service provider among van lines.* According to Jack Griffin, President and COO of Atlas Van Lines, "moveAtlas demonstrates that we are a customer-centric company, focused on embracing the latest technology to empower our customers and bring them value instantaneously. This is the type of technology that will continue to position us as a leader in our field and an innovator in customer service."
There's a Powerful Menu of Instant Information
For a family or corporate transferee preparing to move, moveAtlas is the power tool for instant access to expert advice, moving quotes and shipment tracking. The app also allows corporate managers to track the shipments of several transferees all at once. Customer service capabilities include:
- A quote feature with options for a Full-Service move or a Smart Move container move;
- Ability for customers to track shipments;
- Pre-move to-do lists, packing tips and a four-week, moving countdown planner;
- A checklist for moving day;
- Assurance that every agent within our network is a certified ProMover, and what that means to customers;
- An instant means of contacting Atlas.
moveAtlas users will find a home menu that gives them quick access to the information and features they need.
Users can access the "Quick Quote" function to receive an instant quote for their move.
moveAtlas includes a number of move checklists to help users remember important milestones and tasks they'll need to perform throughout their move.
Introducing technology is nothing new to Atlas. In fact, way back in 2008, Atlas was the first van line to offer instant online quotes for families and individuals considering a move. Known to Atlas agents as iSales and Lead Manager, the online process assures that the person's contact and shipment information reaches the agent rapidly. Early in 2010, Atlas also successfully launched mobile technology for agents with AtlasNet Survey, the household goods survey and estimating application for use on an iPhone, iPad or Android device. An electronic estimate can be returned instantly on the device when the survey is completed. Atlas agents utilize the app to simplify the visit to the moving customer's home. AtlasNet Survey is also available on the App Store and Android Market, yet requires password access to use the app.
The Thinking Behind it: Multiple Platform
The big idea is that moveAtlas allows a consumer to interact with Atlas in the same way they can on a desktop or laptop. The mobile app is as robust as the online desktop application, and there's no loss of function for the consumer or the agent who follows up on the customer lead. "More information in more places where people are is important," explains Vic Baillargeon, Atlas Director of Internet Sales and Marketing. He continues, "Yes, moveAtlas is a mobile app, but the same functions are available on the desktop or laptop. This 'multiple- platform' use is what we're most excited about. The same thinking will apply to many of our new apps already being developed, and to future apps."
Mike McCarthy, Vice President of Golden Van Lines, Inc. (0991) in Denver/Longmont, CO, shares, "We are already receiving inquiries that originated on the moveAtlas mobile app. That's not surprising to us because we know that many people prefer to use their smart phone for many things." Gregg Imlach, CEO of Imlach & Collins Brothers, LLC (1132) in Dallas/Irving, TX, says that "moveAtlas is one more tool that says a lot about Atlas' technological capabilities and brings another level of comfort to corporate and private transferees."
Explaining Multiple Platforms
Gaming systems are prime examples of multiple-platform use — a single game can be created for Xbox, PlayStation, and Wii in an effort to reach the greatest number of consumers. By contrast, when a game is designed exclusively for one system it is not multiple platform, and its purpose is to drive users to one type of game system. As multiple-platform performers, the Atlas apps operate on multiple devices, or platforms, and are designed to reach the greatest number of customers. These platforms include: iPhone, iPad, iPod touch, and Android devices. Email is also a very common example of multiple-platform capabilities, because you're able to access it via your mobile phone, laptop or desktop.
Multiple Platform Use Extends to AtlasNet, Too
While moveAtlas is an engaging set of tools the moving public can see, hold, and interact with, Atlas headquarters and agents also use many applications to facilitate the day-to-day business of moving. This internal intranet, known as AtlasNet, is a virtual lifeline throughout Atlas. AtlasNet provides dozens of applications to assist Atlas agents with everything from the initial residential customer interaction — creating quotes, and then developing binding estimates — to booking a shipment, shipment tracking, rating and distribution, as well as final invoicing of corporate accounts per contract language.
Just as moveAtlas is a multiple platform tool for customers, so are many of the agent tools on AtlasNet. Atlas Director of Information Technology, J. J. Mohr, explains, "Our goal with AtlasNet is multiple platform use where it makes sense to do so. Not every application needs to be available across multiple platforms. But, for those where a new platform improves information flow — which improves business — we are targeting those applications." The popular AtlasNet Survey is already a multiple platform app. Also on the workbench to spread across multiple platforms are AtlasNet PVO Inventory, Calendar Syncing, and Enterprise Shipment Tracking capabilities. Mohr says, "The goal allows a seamless interaction at every step in the customer process across several platforms. We're developing the best functionality, then determining which platform(s) should deliver the services."
Data Sharing is the Key, for Customers and Agents
The dynamic set of AtlasNet applications share information between all facets of the move process, and all sectors of the company. "Each application handles one or more aspects of the move process because the data entered in one phase is the data required for another phase," reports Mohr. Baillargeon adds, "Because the data is application independent, our goal is to spread the data to more places by making the apps available on more platforms — whether the applications are customer-facing, intended for internal Atlas use, or both." Already, AtlasNet and moveAtlas use some of the same dynamic data, allowing relocating individuals to interact with the data added by Atlas headquarters, an agent, or a corporate manager at some point in AtlasNet.
|The moveAtlas app can be used on the iPhone, iPad, iPod touch and Android devices.
Atlas Technology Wins it
Thanks to multiple-platform usage, the following scenario does not have to be imagined. It's happening now. Robin McCarty, Certified Relocation Consultant, Ace Relocation Systems, Inc. (0015) in the Washington/Baltimore market, says she's, "Genuinely excited about moveAtlas. I feel so much more connected when I can track a customer's shipment easily from wherever I am. If they haven't already looked themselves, I can call them or shoot them an email with the status of the move; it says so much about how we treat our people when I can provide this information even quicker."
It's this commitment to technology that's landed Atlas on the nation's top IT hit list — the InformationWeek 500 — three years in a row. Before a company can earn recognition in the InformationWeek 500, it must achieve annual revenues of at least $250 million and be invited to participate. The application process requires a rigorous evaluation of the firm's technology strategies, including quantitative and qualitative assessments of innovation. Editors of InformationWeek evaluate the applications and determine the results.
* In the 17th annual Nationwide Relocating Employee Survey© conducted by Trippel Survey and Research, Atlas ranked in the top position of all the HHG companies reported by transferees. For more information about Atlas ranking #1 with customers, please see the article featured on page 28 in this issue of Amplifier.