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Chat Smarter At Penn State
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Chat Smarter At Penn State

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  • Here I am providing in-person customer service (actually at my last job in New Orleans)
  • Here is my website on library resources for mathematics. You can see my contact information including email on the right. Well, this seems less like…
  • THIS and more like…
  • THIS. Not very friendly and not very available.
  • THIS is my blog, however, and using both a chat widget and a Facebook badge it is much friendlier and as I will show you, makes me much more available to my users.
  • Mostly undergraduates from a variety of campuses
  • Most needed help looking for a specific item, but many also needed help with a research project or paper. A significant question to us was how they found the chat widget. About forty percent indicated they discovered it on the website, while an equal number heard about it from a librarian.
  • Transcript

    • 1. Chat Smarter at Penn State John Meier, Science Librarian and Jimmy Vuccolo, ITS
    • 2. Chat Widgets • Customer Service on the Web • What’s a Widget? • How Do I Get a Widget? • Widget Best Practices • Preliminary Research Findings
    • 3. Customer Service
    • 4. Customer Service on the Web
    • 5. Customer Service
    • 6. Customer Service Copyright: Jerry Wong / xcode @ flickr.com
    • 7. Customer Service on the Web
    • 8. What’s a Widget? Javascript or Flash code For your website <object width=quot;160quot; height=quot;250quot; ><param name=quot;moviequot; value=quot;http://widget.meebo.co m/mm.swf?QcfqzYHgOHquot;/><em bed src=quot;http://widget.meebo.com/ mm.swf?QcfqzYHgOHquot; type=quot;application/x-shockwave- flashquot; width=quot;160quot; height=quot;250quot;></embed></objec t>
    • 9. Where Do I Get a Widget? • Meebo • AIM Wimzi • Plugoo • Digsby http://www.readwriteweb.com/archives/10_chat_widgets.php
    • 10. Widget Best Practices • Different types of widgets • Placement • Staffing • Customer Service
    • 11. Different Types of Widgets • Single user – Personal – An instance on each page – Hard to make referrals • Chat “room” – Public – Single instance – Can have any number of users or staff online
    • 12. Placement • Embedded – Highly Visible – Small appearance • Linked – Less Visible – Larger in size • Popup – Less Visible (linked) – Any size – No problems if user browses in other window
    • 13. Staffing • Individual – One person – One chat account • Shared – Multiple people – One chat account • Chat “room” – Multiple people – Each with own chat account
    • 14. Staffing • On Desk – On chat while at service desk – Many interruptions • On Call – On chat while in office – Limited times • On… whenever – Most hours online – Inconsistent hours – Don’t forget to be “Away”
    • 15. Customer Service • Chat Etiquette – Similar to email etiquette including “think before you hit SEND” – Choose an appropriate screen name • “Virtual Reference” Best Practices – Introduce yourself promptly and offer to help – Use shorter messages but stay professional not ok 2 use abbr. as in txting – Make sure you have contact information if you need to follow up
    • 16. Preliminary Research Findings • Study of widgets on Penn State Library web pages • Co-Investigators are Helen Smith and Sam Stormont • IRB Exempt status • 16 questions (most qualitative in nature) – Demographic – Quality of service – Comments
    • 17. Survey Results • Who? – Undergrads 67% – Faculty 13% – Graduate 7% – Other 13% • Where? – University Park 42% – Other campuses 58%
    • 18. Survey Results • Who? • Why? – Undergrads 67% – Need help looking for a – Faculty 13% specific item 60% – Graduate 7% – Project or paper 27% – Other 13% – For my research 13% • Where? • How did you find it? – University Park 42% – Found on my own 40% – Other campuses 58% – Librarian 40% – Other 20%
    • 19. Survey Results • Over 90% of responses – Were very satisfied with the information or materials found – Located what they asked about – Rated the response time of the librarian as very fast – Described the service as very friendly – Indicated the librarian understood what they wanted – Likely to use the service again
    • 20. Comments I really liked online service because it helped me out This is an excellent idea. from home. I didn’t have BRAVO PSU Library. to visit the library. very helpful service! makes things quicker and easier to find if I am having trouble Awesome! on my own.
    • 21. Summary of Chat Widgets • Customer Service on the Web – Use widgets • What’s a Widget? – code • How Do I Get a Widget? – vendors • Widget Best Practices – Location, location, location • Preliminary Research Findings – good
    • 22. Jabber • Introduction to Jabber • Jabber @ Penn State
    • 23. Introduction to Jabber • What is Jabber? • Goals of Jabber
    • 24. What is Jabber? • Initiative to produce an open source, XML- based instant messaging platform – XMPP Protocol (Extensible Messaging and Presence Protocol)
    • 25. Goals of Jabber • Open - anyone can write their Jabber software using the open specifications that define how Jabber works • Decentralized - anyone can run their own Jabber server and connect to other servers on the network
    • 26. Goals of Jabber • Secure - strong encryption, authentication and identity features help to ensure confidentiality, privacy and prevent spam • Flexible - the same Jabber transport used or IM can also be used to exchange any data
    • 27. Jabber @ Penn State • Humble Beginnings • New Service • Your Jabber Identity • Client Support
    • 28. Humble Beginnings
    • 29. New Service • chat.psu.edu – Beta since 2006 – Based on Jabber2d implementation of Jabber – Load balanced on front-end and back-end – Secure TLS/SSL by default – Uses Penn State Access Account authentication
    • 30. Your Jabber Identity • Communication between Jabber users is done using their Jabber id – Google: jvuccolo@gmail.com – Penn State: jvuccolo@chat.psu.edu
    • 31. Client Support • Popular Jabber Clients – Adium – Pidgin/Gaim – iChat – Trillian Pro • Configuration instructions can be found in the ITS knowledge base – http://kb.its.psu.edu/psu-all/hd/jabberconfig/
    • 32. Conference Server • Allows groups of people to be in the same chat session – conferences.chat.psu.edu – Your handle is your Access Id
    • 33. chat.psu.edu Futures • Software change from Jabber2d to eJabberd • Group/class restrictions capability for the conferences server
    • 34. Comments! Questions? Thank you for your time. • John Meier, Science Librarian, meier@psu.edu AIM/Meebo/Gtalk/Twitter/etc: johnmeier1 • Jimmy Vuccolo, ITS, jvuccolo@psu.edu