REJI monitors customer kiosk and POS software proactively using RealVNC Connect

REJI provides start-to-finish customer experience software for businesses in the Quick Service Restaurant (QSR), Fast Casual, and Convenience industries. From self-ordering kiosks to point of sale (POS) devices to self-checkout, REJI Viewport software provides users with seamless, integrated solutions that are compatible with any existing ecosystem.

Both REJI’s clients and the REJI support team monitor devices running REJI Viewport with RealVNC Connect. It allows faster more flexible monitoring than competing remote access solutions. RealVNC Connect’s compatibility with a wide range of operating systems also allows REJI Viewport to work with any client’s existing IT infrastructure, making integration much faster and simpler.

Changes in the convenience industry create an opportunity

Founded in 2010 as a POS software provider, REJI expanded into self-ordering kiosk software in 2013.

In recent years, many convenience store operators have opened food service kitchens inside their existing premises. In many locations, made-to-order food has displaced alcohol and tobacco sales as the biggest in-store revenue source. While some retailers open franchises of well-known QSR brands in their stores, launching an own-brand QSR gives the retailer more control and higher margins.

After noticing this trend, REJI founder Bernard Espanola and CEO Frank Yoder identified a gap in the market. For convenience stores to compete effectively against established QSRs, they need to provide customers with the high-quality self-ordering kiosks they now expect. This is a serious obstacle for new entrants in the made-to-order food industry, however. Supporting and maintaining a kiosk fleet that provides a high standard of customer experience is something that even large multinational organizations sometimes struggle to do.

To fill this gap, Bernard and Frank designed REJI Viewport, a digital endpoint support and monitoring system that specializes in servicing large deployments of kiosk & digital signage devices.

The Problem

To monitor a kiosk or menu display effectively, you need to see the screen

The most important customer engagement points for QSRs are the kiosk and menu display screens. When these fail, or display incorrect information, it creates aggravation for restaurant operators, and undermines the customer experience.

Retailers can implement generic off-the-shelf monitoring systems for these devices, but these tools are not a good fit for this situation.  These solutions can only monitor how much of a device’s CPU was in use, how much hard drive space remains, or when a receipt printer was running low on paper. They cannot detect a breakfast menu being displayed in the afternoon or alert restaurant operators to a failed pricing update. The only foolproof way to ensure that the customers see what they are supposed to see is to directly monitor what is displayed on screens.

Keeping track of hundreds of customer-facing screens simultaneously is a serious logistical challenge. Verifying each screen one at a time is time-consuming and unrealistic for monitoring thousands of kiosks and digital signs. Frank and Bernard realized they needed a monitoring tool that could scale as the number of devices using self-service software grew and that they would need a remote access solution with enough speed and flexibility to cope with the demand.


RealVNC Connect: accessing hundreds of remote connections with one click

Most remote access software is designed to access one machine at a time, resulting in a very cumbersome process for monitoring multiple customer-facing kiosks and digital signage screens. Support workers must open a portal to each device and then carefully position and size this window in relation to other open portal windows (sometimes across multiple monitors).

The REJI development team encountered this time-consuming headache with the first two remote access software solutions they implemented. On the third attempt they tried RealVNC Connect and realized they had found the perfect solution.

Once the initial remote access connection is established, RealVNC Connect allows users to create a .vnc file extension that acts as a shortcut for that connection. Each time the file is opened, the window showing the kiosk or menu screen resumes the size and screen position from its last use. After creating a simple script, the REJI development team could open hundreds of screen views with a single click, and each view would automatically position itself correctly on the screen.

“RealVNC Connect became our go-to solution for remote access after we tried two other well-known remote access solutions. Those other solutions provided remote access, but they lacked the functionality we needed to visually monitor hundreds of remote access connections simultaneously. With RealVNC Connect, REJI Viewport can easily open hundreds of live-monitoring portals with a click of a button.”

The solution

RealVNC Connect helps REJI Viewport software integrate with any existing system

Soon after switching, the REJI development team discovered a second advantage provided by RealVNC Connect: compatibility with an especially wide range of operating systems.

REJI Viewport is designed to integrate and display screens from five different components used in the retail market: the self-ordering kiosk, the POS machine, the digital menu displays, the kitchen display system, and the in-store digital signage.

Because it is compatible with Windows, macOS, iOS, Android, and Linux, RealVNC Connect allows REJI to work with a huge range of devices. This allows REJI to provide their Viewport service to customers without the need for device changes.


Thanks to RealVNC Connect, REJI is ready to scale

Using RealVNC Connect, the REJI support team launches hundreds of kiosk and menu screen displays every morning across a bank of monitors in their command center.

When a customer engages with a kiosk, Viewport automatically moves the window displaying the active screen to the main monitor. Viewport then immediately enlarges the window size so the customer interaction can be more easily monitored in real-time. This allows the support team to focus on screens in use, and how the customers are interacting with the customer experience.

Already used in hundreds of locations in Texas, Alabama, Illinois, Florida and Mississippi, REJI is expecting the demand for REJI Viewport software to keep pace with the surge in kitchen openings in convenience stores across America. Thanks to RealVNC Connect, REJI’s support provision will be able to scale just as rapidly as the demand for its software.

“The fact that RealVNC Connect is compatible with a wide range of operating systems is important for our future growth. We provide software to our customers, but we also want to provide first level support for their entire ecosystem. With RealVNC Connect, we can monitor a digital sign running on Android, or customer kiosks that have a Windows-based OS. Having the flexibility to work with any system makes it much easier for us to say ‘yes’ to any potential customer.”

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