What problem does it solve? Generally speaking, callers usually experience longer wait times to reach to a customer service representatives at State government agencies and/or departments. Examples: Div. of Taxation, Family Care, Revenue, MVC, Labor etc. During peak times, due to higher than usual call volume, the phone system would just hung up on the caller, causing frustration and anger towards the agency/department. The technology can be used to provide more transparency, accessibility and responsive service to the pub What is your solution and who does it apply to? Live Chat is a Web service that will allow all agencies/departments to communicate, or chat, in real time with visitors to their Web site. Live Chat support applications are commonly used to provide immediate assistance, customer support and information to the public. No more phone calls, no more waiting in line. State of Delaware now has live support in place at several of its agencies. A new report by Comm100 found that aggregate customer satisfaction rate for live chat increased for the first time in three years to 83.1% (Source: Forbes). When it comes to dealing with service issues and questions, customers would much rather chat online with a customer service representative than speak to one live on the phone, according to the J.D. Power 2016 U.S. Chat and Email Bench markin Study One of the advantages of a live chat is that while someone needing assistance or information could type in a question while agents are busy. The visibility of questions would help agent to act quickly. What is the anticipated impact? With live chat option, we can direct callers away from the phone and free up agent availability. Agents can handle multiple chats at once, meaning you can deliver quicker service, to more people. This will facilitate greater reduction in times spent over the phone providing info / help. With the help of live chat, the link to publications, applications, etc. can be copies and pasted in the chat window. Live chat support can provide reports on usage, agent performance and customer satisfaction – all automatically and in real-time. Live chat tends to be less draining than a phone call, live chat comes with canned responses. By sending pre-set answers at a click, it prevents repetitive manual keystrokes and agent frustration over commonly asked questions. During non-working hours, people could leave a question, to which agents could respond via email and/or phone call. Live chat - agents can work on multiple chat sessions, will reduce wait times.
Good idea. I assume this idea is suggesting an alternative rather than a replacement for a live agent? Some taxpayers may not have access to the Internet or the skills to use it.
Great idea - is there a specific use case you have in mind? For instance, a specific call center, or departmental group?
Hello Beth- The live chat support may be used in conjunction with the phone line. In order to address the issues you have mentioned, phone support may be made available at certain time(s) during the day. According to U.S census bureau, 82.5% of households in New Jersey had broadband internet subscriptions between 2013-2017 years. I am sure this percentage will keep on rising. Also, Public libraries provide computer stations with internet service to the public for free.
Hello Kai – Example of a specific use case: At Taxation, different groups can be created to address public concerns and queries on different topics like sales tax, Individual income tax, Audit and collections, taxpayer account etc. Group-specific canned responses can be created. Different groups could be assigned to a specific webpage, for example when a chat starts on sales & use tax page, it automatically gets routed to sales tax team. I hope it answers your question.
I think this is a fantastic idea. In my personal life, I'd much rather do an online chat. It also provides a transcript that you can refer back to.
Jeenal - I'm not sure having groups to handle specific topics will be necessary. For example, everyone in Taxation's call center handles whatever calls they receive. I'm thinking it could work the same way with live chat. Does that make sense?
Thanks for the feedback, Jeenal. I'm also thinking about senior citizens. Maybe as the oldest taxpayers pass on, the next generation will be more technology savvy so this will be less of an issue. Although I would say that phone calls should never be eliminated totally. In the meantime, I agree that both modes of communication should be available. Phone support can still be available during its current daily schedule.
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