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NetHelpDesk Live Chat™ Guide

NetHelpDesk Live Chat is an add-on to NetHelpDesk that can be used to allow End-Users, and Visitors to the web portal to chat to Agents.


1. Overview

The chat application can appear on the notloggedin.html page on the self service web portal, the loggedin.html End-User page, and the loggedintech.html page. Each of these behaves differently. The application can also be added to any other site, where it will behave in the same way as the notloggedin.html page.


This guide will go through the basic setup, and how to use NetHelpDesk Live Chat™.


2. Prerequisites

Before using Live Chat, the following will need to be done before starting its setup and configuration.


3. Key Terms

Here are a few terms commonly used in this guide and in the application:

Live Chat

The name for a conversation between an End-User and an Agent.

Live Chat Window

The box on the screen where the conversation appears.

Agent Chat

The name of a conversation between 2 Agents.

Group Chat

The name of a conversation between 3 or more Agents.

Closed Chat

A chat that has finished and has been ended by either an End-User or an Agent.

Conversation

An Agent can have multiple chat instances with different people at once. Each of these is called a Conversation.

Participant

Each person (End-User, Agent or Visitor) who is part of a conversation is called a Participant.

Visitor

An unknown End-User who is not logged in to the Self-Service web portal. They will be asked for their name before being allowed to chat, whether they are known to your organisation or not, if they are not logged-in.


4. Settings

Please check that you have set your web portal URL correctly within the settings in the main Windows client. You can find this in N > Setup > Main Configuration > Email > Email Templates > (Default Message Group) as per the below screenshot. This URL will need to be set to the URL of your NetHelpDesk web portal.

Live Chat 1

The settings for Live Chat are available in the Main Windows client. To enable, ensure that the switch for Live Chat is enabled in N > Setup > Main Configuration, and that you have purchased the additional licences needed for this feature.

Go to N > Setup > Main Configuration > Live Chat, and ensure the switch is turned on. The slider shows blue when enabled.

Live Chat 2

The following settings screen will display, with the following settings:


This screenshot shows the default settings:

Live Chat 3

5. End-User or Visitor Live Chat Interface

If a User is allowed access to Live Chat based on the criteria set in section 4, the Chat bubble will appear in the bottom right-hand corner of the screen.

Live Chat 4

Clicking this will launch the Chat Application.

If the Visitor is unknown to you, or has not logged-in, the Chat Window will ask them to enter their name before chat begins.

Live Chat 5

After entering their name, or if they are a logged in user, the chat window will be displayed in place of the chat bubble.

Live Chat 6

5.1 Troubleshooting Chat Windows Setup

When clicking the Chat bubble, if the progress icon continues to spin, without showing the Chat Window, a step previous to this has not been completed correctly. Make sure:


Do let us know how you are getting on with this feature, and any improvements we can make to this experience.


5.2 Chat Windows

Once your Live Chat window appears, the screen is setup as follows:


Live Chat 7

When a chat is minimised by the unknown visitor or known End-User, if a new message is received from the Agent, the number of unread messages will show next to the chat bubble, and a notification sound will play.

Live Chat 8

For logged-in End-Users who already have a conversation that was not closed, it will be resumed should they be disconnected for any reason, such as browsing to a new web page on the same tab in a browser. Unknown not logged-in visitors are not able to benefit from this feature.

Logged-in End-Users will also see a Chat about this Ticket button against each ticket, which will automatically show the ticket number to the Agent, without having to re-enter this.

Live Chat 9

A new chat linked to the currently selected ticket will open, or a note will be added to a current chat, if not closed previously by ending the conversation. The ticket can also be changed manually by selecting the Chat about a different Ticket link in the Chat Menu. The conversation will be added to the ticket once it has ended.


6. Agent Live Chat - Web Interface

The Agents can access NetHelpDesk Live Chat™ from the Windows program, and the Agent web interface. The web interfaces are currently an accompaniment to the main Windows program.


6.1 Online Status

When an Agent first logs into the Web Portal, they will automatically be logged into the Chat Application. When logged-in, an Agent will see bubbles in the bottom right corner of the screen.

Live Chat 10

To sign-out of the Chat-Application, click the menu button and select Go Offline. The bubbles will now be replaced with the Chat icon. Clicking this Chat bubble will sign the Agent back into chat. When an Agent is signed in, they will appear as online to other Agents.

Live Chat 11

6.2 Conversations

When signed into Live Chat, Agents will see the Chat Menu button at the bottom of the page. Above this, all currently open conversations will be shown in coloured bubbles. Above these will be the New Conversation button (plus symbol).

Clicking on a conversation bubble will show the Chat Window for that conversation.

Live Chat 12

Similarly, clicking the New Conversation button will open the Chat Window for a new Conversation, where participants can be added, such as other Agents. In order to begin a conversation, at least one participant will need to be added. This will be covered later in this guide.

Live Chat 13

Each conversation is labelled based on the initials of the recipient, or the initials of the name of the conversation (if set). Conversations can have the following colours:


For Agent to Agent chats with only 2 participants, if the second participant has a photo, it will be shown in the bubble. If a conversation is not currently open in the chat window, notifications for unread messages will show next to the bubble, and a notification sound will play until you read the chat.

Live Chat 14

If there are more than seven (7) open conversations, the first 7 will be shown along with an arrow to navigate to older conversations. Conversations are ordered from top to bottom based on the date of the last update.

Live Chat 15

6.3 Agent Chat Window

The Chat window for Agents is the same as the one for Users, except there are a few more features and options. System messages will be shown when events occur, such as someone joining or leaving a conversation, or the name of the conversation being changed.

Live Chat 16

The name of the recipient or name of the conversation (if set) will appear at the top of the conversation. If it is a Live Chat, or there is one other Participant, the online status will be shown next to the name. An empty circle is offline or unknown, a green circle is online.

Live Chat 17

There are also more menu options:

Live Chat 18

The View Participant screen shows all participants of the conversation, their online status, and if they have any unread messages.

Live Chat 19

The Add Participants screen allows you to search all Agents, and add them to the conversation using the Add (plus) button next to the Agent.

Live Chat 20

6.4 Live Chats

All Agents will always have access to internal chats. However, in the Live Chat Settings page, there is the ability to add Sections of Agents to be able to use the Live Chats features, supporting known end-users and/or unknown visitors.

If the Agent is a member of a Section that has been enabled to use Live Chat, when an end-user or visitor creates a new chat and sends a message, the New Live Chat will:

This will appear for every Agent who is part of a live chat section.

Live Chat 21

Clicking on the conversation will accept the chat request, and you will join the chat with the user. The request will then disappear from all other Agents views. If two or more Agents click on the conversation at the same time, the first will join the chat automatically, the others will be shown a message that someone has already joined and will be given the option to whether they still want to join.

Once a chat request has been accepted, it will be like a normal conversation.

Ensure that once the conversation is over, that End Chat is selected. This will close the chat and mean that the next time the user opens chat it will create another new chat request.


6.5 Chat Page

Clicking on the Main Menu, and selecting Go to Chat Page will take you to the Chat Page.

Live Chat 22

This is a page which shows a larger version of the Chat Application that takes up the whole page.

Conversations are shown on the left, and the conversation window takes up the remainder of the page. Closed Conversations can also be viewed.

Note that the client is only designed to work on a single tab. Whilst the chat application will work if multiple tabs for the same site are open in the browser, it can only hold the session data for one user/tech/visitor. Having multiple sessions logged into the portal on the same browser as different Users/Techs/Visitors will cause peculiar behaviour. When testing with multiple session, we recommend you use a different browser per session.


7. Agent Live Chat (Windows)

The windows version of the Live Chat add-on for Agents is available as part of the main NetHelpDesk client.


7.1 Introduction

The windows version of the Live Chat add-on for Agents is available as part of the main NetHelpDesk client. The functionality in the windows version is the same as the Web application, and screen appearances very similar. This section will cover where everything is in the Windows application. For details about the usage, please read section 5 (for the web version).


7.2 Interface

The chat bubbles in the windows application appear on the Statistics pane. You will need to ensure that this is visible from the View Ribbon on the main screen. The Statistics pane shows a chat bubble when Live Chat is enabled. Clicking on this will show the Live Chat feed on the Statistics pane.

Each chat bubble has the name of the chat or participant next to it. New Live Chat bubbles will appear a fixed Orange colour instead of flashing. Clicking on a bubble will open the Chat Window.

The chat window has a few additional menu options compared to the web version, these are outlined below;

· View Activity – Show the view activity screen for the End-User (if applicable)

· View User Details – Show the User Details screen for the End-User (if applicable)

· Undock window/Dock window – Undocking the window will release it from its fixed position on the main screen and allow it to be moved. Docking it will return it to it’s starting position.

The Chat page can be accessed from the Main Screen toolbar.


7.3 Additional Chat Features

Chats can be imitated from other places in the main windows client.

The Ticket Details screen contains an option to Start Chat from N > File > Start Chat. This will start a chat with the assigned Agent (if applicable) which is linked to the ticket.

The Agent contact cards which appear will hovering over an Agents name in By Agent or By Section view contain a link to start a chat with the Agent. The button will only be enabled if Live Chat is enabled and the Agent is online.


8. Setting up on an alternative site

The web chat for not logged in users can be set up on any site which can establish a connection with the Chat Service on your NetHelpDesk Web Portal.

To do this;

Contact our team to discuss what you are trying to achieve, and we can help guide you in the next best step.

Our software is available on multiple platforms...

NetHelpDesk is available on a range of devices with industry-leading functionality available throughout.

  • Windows Phone

    Windows Phone

  • Android

    Android

  • iPhone

    iPhone

  • BlackBerry

    BlackBerry

  • Tablets

    Tablets

  • Windows

    Windows

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