Since customer's expect a rapid response when requesting live help, iService tracks the status of all agents and their availability for chat in real-time. When a chat agent logs into iService, they are presented with a Go Available \ Go Unavailable button.
Clicking this button toggles the agent's status to "Available" or "Unavailable", which is tracked in real-time within the Logged In Chat Agents page. An iService Forms command ($IF -chat(available)$) is then used to determine whether the Online or Offline button is displayed on your website. This command is explained further within the iService Forms Developer guide, but operates as shown below.
The $IF -chat command must be used with a -Ptopic parameter to specify the topic for the chat. This can be hard coded into the chat link, or it can be supplied by the customer when requesting the chat. In order for agents to be available, the following must all be true.
a.The contact requesting the chat has specified a valid topicID for the chat interaction.
b.An agent with segment access to the specified topic is logged into iService AND has set their chat status to available.
c.The available agent has the required Skills for the specified topic.
Example with chat topic hard coded (topic ID = 4):
$If -chat(available) -Ptopic'4'$
I am here.
I am not here
For the case where agents are available, a message (or image) with a link can be displayed offering live chat (as shown in the example below). When clicked, an iService form is used to capture contact information (e.g., email address) before the chat is launched. It's required to capture the user's email address so the interaction history from the chat can be properly archived.
For the case where agents are not available, a message (or image) with a link to an Ask a Question form can be offered to take the customer's message (as shown below).