iService Chat allows you to engage in real-time dialogue with customers. Chat uses your existing iService configuration, such as business segments, topics, skills, etc. You will only be presented chats that match your skills and segment access.
When the customer begins a chat, a chat interaction record is recorded in iService and a cookie is recorded on the customer's computer. This cookie allows the chat session to be reopened if the customer closes their browser or loses their internet connection. If the iService web server is unable to contact the customer's browser for 5 minutes, the chat will be automatically resolved and recorded to history.
"Chat with us" buttons and live chat request forms are only presented to customers when there are iService agents available. Agents are only considered available if they have the segment access and skills associated with the topic selected by the customer, and their status is set to "Available".
To set your status to available, click the "Go Available" button as shown below.
Clicking the go available button
This button will toggle between "Available" and "Unavailable" depending on your current status.
When an incoming chat request is submitted that matches your segment access and skills, the Accept Chat buttons will illuminate and flash indicating a customer is waiting for an agent. The take chat button in the top banner shows the number of waiting chats that match your skills.
The chat status section in the top left corner also includes a Take Chat button. This button is enabled in the same way as the top banner button.
If you are working in another browser tab besides iService, you can see the number of waiting chats in the page title of the iService browser tab.
If you've enabled browser notifications for iService, you'll receive a desktop notification as shown below when a new chat request matches your skills. You can click this notification to take the chat
The iService chat browser notification
Once you accept the incoming chat, the Agent Chat Interface will open within your browser where you can begin your chat with the customer.
In most cases, the first time you go available for chat your browser will ask you to accept browser notifications. After you accept the notifications they should appear automatically when new incoming chats arrive.
In some cases, however, your notifications might be blocked. Check these settings to ensure they are properly enabled.
Check these settings in your notifications window
If you are using Focus Assist, your notification settings might be overridden in certain conditions. You can check the status of Focus Assist in the notifications section of your system tray. It should be turned off as shown below.
After you accept an incoming chat, a My Active Chats panel populates the top of your iService screen. This panel will remain on every iService page until all of your chats have ended. You can chat with multiple contacts at one time. When you have more than one live chat assigned, they will be stacked inside the my active chats window with and expand/collapse icon. You can minimize a chat panel by collapsing the accordion.
The My Active Chats panel
The agent chat interface is comprised of the following sections.
1.My Active Chats panel - provides a list of chats that are assigned to the agent. Expand or collapse the active chat windows as needed.
2.Active Chat Panel Summary - each individual chat is contained within an active chat panel. The panel includes summary information that's displayed when the panel is collapsed. This includes the contact name, the topic of the chat, and the last text that was entered. The contact name is a hyperlink to their contact details. When the last comment was from the customer, the text snippet in the summary is shown in red. This alerts you to the fact that the customer is waiting for their reply.
3.Chat Dialogue – is where you type your responses and view messages from the customer. When the initial chat request is assigned, the chat dialogue includes the subject and question from the customer so you know something about the question before you begin the discussion.
4.ActionButtons - the End, Forward, and Change Topic buttons function similarly to the buttons within the MyQueue page for emails.
END - Ends the chat and sends the message "Agent closed the chat." to the customer's chat window. The chat will remain visible to the agent for 10 seconds before it is removed from the list of assigned chats.
FORWARD - This button include two options: Remove From Queue and Assign to Agent. Remove from queue will put the chat back into the queue for the next agent. The Assign to Agent option displays a list of agents that are online AND have their chat status set to Available.
CHANGE TOPIC - This button provides the full list of topics that can accept chats. Only topics that have available agents with the corresponding skills are available for selection.
5.Stock Responses - this panel is used to paste frequently used phrases into the chat conversation. The response picker has two text boxes. The first is used to filter the response list, normally to limit the responses to those that were specifically intended for chat interactions. The second text box allows you to search for specific responses, and narrows the list as you type.
When a chat is resolved, the complete history is archived into the iService database. You can view this history from the contact's Customer Info - History tab. The customer can also view this history from their My Account - History tab.
An example of a chat history
When a customer closes their chat window without ending the chat, iService will close the chat for inactivity after approximately two minutes. When this happens, the final entry in the chat history will indicate the chat was closed for inactivity.
This only occurs when the chat window is disconnected by the customer ... either the browser is closed or the customer loses their internet connection. The customer may remain idle for an indefinite amount of time and continue in the chat so long as their internet connection to the iService site is maintained.
While the agent chat interface is integrated into all of the iService pages, tools for managing chats and chat agents are located in the Managing Work Queues section. The Manage Chats page provides a real-time view of active chats, and the Logged in Chat Agents page provides a list of chat agents and their status.
To learn more about configuring chat for your tenant, read the Configuring Chat chapters.