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Luxer Lockers, with touchscreen and 15 compartments closed
The Service Desk’s 15-unit Luxer Lockers unit at the Student Union

When COVID-19 necessitated a new safe way of dropping off and picking up laptops, the ITS Service Desk devised a creative solution for students — contactless lockers.

ITS installed Luxer Lockers at Carolina’s Student Union during the first week of classes of the Fall semester.

Over the first four days, the lockers were used 120 times.

The Luxer unit contains 15 compartments of varying sizes, a touchscreen, a battery backup, and electronics. Students — and the rest of the campus community, for that matter — are able to drop off machines that need repair, pick up repaired machines, and access loaners in a virtually contactless experience.

Safe and reliable

“Providing a contactless method for laptop support was crucial for us this semester,” said Kate Hash, Assistant Vice Chancellor for Customer Experience & Engagement, whose oversight includes the Service Desk. “We wanted to ensure that our students had a way to quickly drop off computers in need of repair and retrieve loaner laptops in a safe and reliable manner.”

The Student Union is a convenient, accessible location for the lockers. The Undergraduate Library, where the Service Desk is located, is currently closed because of the pandemic.

Luxer Lockers unit with its 15 compartments open
The Luxer Lockers unit provides 15 compartments of varying sizes

The Computer Repair Center will continue to accept drop-offs at its Airport Drive location when that option is more convenient for faculty and staff.

Intuitive customer experience

The Luxer unit works both from an iPad built into the unit and can be accessed via the Luxer app, enabling that virtually contactless experience. The unit also offers an intuitive customer experience.

Students, faculty and staff can initiate a check-in of a machine by chat, web ticket, or by calling 919-962-HELP.

Valuable solution even after pandemic

The Luxer unit offers a creative solution to the problem of face-to-face contact during COVID, said Erin Towne, who manages the Service Desk’s Walk-In staff. It also “has the potential to expand pick-up/drop-off hours in the future without the need for staffing of the Walk-In Service Desk.”

The locker unit is a great long-term solution for the campus community, Hash said. “Contactless customer support is likely to endure long past the pandemic.”

Automation saves resources

These contactless lockers not only automate workflow and save resources but also enable ITS to think differently about its work.

Getting the Luxer Lockers up and running was a collaborative effort across ITS, with assistance from the Information Security Office, the Networking group and the Service Desk.

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