When challenges arise, calling on a specialist is often the safest and most efficient path to a solution. But in a business environment where that subject matter lead might be housed at another plant or region – or in a pandemic when employees are largely working from home – the primary hurdle is getting that specialist in the room.
KPMG Global Audit Leader for Consumer & Retail, Allan Colaco explains that the use of smart glasses is akin to telehealth technologies. “While there are always going to be situations where a specialist is needed in person, triaging a situation can be a first step toward problem-solving. As industries from finance to consumer goods integrate more technology into their business operations, this move toward virtualization with fewer in-person requirements is the future.”
“This is bleeding edge technology,” adds Audit Partner Paul Patefield, who has worked with clients to explore the uses of smart glasses. “What it comes down to is getting the best person for the job to be present.” In remote inventory counts as conducted by many auditors, without smart glasses, the engagement team isn’t walking among the inventory themselves. But with smart glasses, they can be. KPMG sends the smart glasses to the inventory warehouse ahead of time, and everything the wearer sees and hears is streamed to the engagement team. As Patefield notes, “When we talk about inventory counts, we’re talking about increasing quality. Entire engagement teams with deep knowledge of products and systems can share sight and communicate in real-time with the individual walking through the warehouse – guiding them, directing them toward specific boxes, counting the sampled inventory themselves.”
The only limit is the imagination of the industry: IT auditors visiting data rooms. Advisors reviewing a company’s disaster recover plans. Repairs and maintenance. Surgery. Any application where you might benefit from bringing a specialist in to see what you see, is on the table with a technology like smart glasses.