Why To Invest In An LMS With Live Chat Functionality
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Tips For Implementing An LMS With Live Chat Features

We’ve all had the experience of talking to machines. "For service in English, press 1. To confirm prices, press 2. To summon a sparkly unicorn, press 3." These automated services were designed to make life easier—and cut labor costs—but they turned into torture devices instead. So, is it really a good idea to bring this nuisance into online training via chatbots? Well, first off, live chat isn’t necessarily a bot. In fact, an LMS with live chat functionality usually involves a real person offering real support. Second, even if it’s a robotic algorithm, it can be helpful if you just use it right. So how do we define "right" in the world of live chat training?

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1. Set Ground Rules

Ideally, you should have human staffers rather than machines. In a workplace training setting, your live chat team could be colleagues you’re familiar with. This level of acquaintance can make it easy to disrespect their time. Remember, they’re on the clock just like you are. And on the other side, remember that you’re dealing with someone who needs help. Otherwise, they wouldn’t have pinged you. So, no matter how "foolish" their question sounds, try not to be patronizing. Also, yes, turning it off and on again does work a lot of times. So, both the employee training participant and the live chat assistant need to be patient and respectful. Design communication and usage policies that facilitate cordial live chat sessions.

2. Encourage Employees To Clarify The Problem

The live chat assistant potentially has several support tickets to get through. Employees shouldn’t keep them "on the line" longer than they have to. Yes, you’re frustrated and frazzled, but count to ten before you dial up the live chat. Think about the problem you have and what you’d like them to do. Describe the issue in a sentence or two and have it clear in your head. This way, when you begin the chat, your trainer can figure it out faster. Sometimes, just trying to reformat the question or sum up the problem can help employees figure out a solution on their own. They can reflect on the challenge and may realize that there are other support options available. For instance, they can use the JIT online training library to refresh their memory and then complete the task without having to use the LMS with live chat functionality to resolve the issue.

3. Integrate Your Systems

A cursory visit to any website will show you how efficient chatbots can be. They mimic human conversation, but their most intriguing feature is algorithms. They pick keywords from your query and offer a list of relevant articles. These recommended bytes often answer your query without human intervention. Use this same principle for live chat. When an employee asks a question, use the integrated search functionality in your LMS. It can automatically pick out keywords and put relevant information on the live chat operator’s screen. Integrating your voice, text, and reference library systems makes this almost instantaneous. It can also help the live chat operator ask the right troubleshooting questions.

4. Include An Online Directory

Live chat may have designated staff members. Their job description includes servicing their colleagues. But in a social learning setup, anyone can help anyone else. As long as you know the right answer to a question, it’s okay to respond. And as an employee training participant, you may have a preference. You might want to ask someone you’re already friendly with. Or a workmate you admire. Or someone whose opinion you respect, and whose expertise you’re sure of. A directory can make this option available to employees. It can be as simple as an icon that lights up to show who is online and who isn’t. This way, the employee can select who they’d like to chat with. However, this feature should have a "disable" option. It’s helpful in case a colleague is unable to field questions at the time. They may be on the platform for other reasons, or they may be too busy to interact with employee training participants at that exact moment. So, give them the choice to log on "invisibly."

5. Share Online Training Resources

Employees might bump into something interesting and useful. A recommendation, article, online training tutorial, book, or even a podcast episode. Live chat allows them to upload these online training resources in real time and possibly discuss them with curious colleagues. Your LMS with live chat functionality should have easy upload tools, and the live chat option should be enabled on all media. This means you can switch to live chat from a video, audio, or streamed upload. Colleagues can comment and converse at any point in the upload. And the uploader is able to switch on notifications on their post. Whenever someone comments, the uploader gets a little ping in case they want to hop on and chat via the live chat LMS.

Live chat offers so much more than eerily human chatbots. It can be a handy tool for peer eLearning feedback and real-time knowledge exchanges since employees are able to interact in real time and offer advice to team members from around the globe. Set ground rules that keep chats succinct and civil. As the initiator, be clear on your query. As the responder, ask good troubleshooting questions to get to the source sooner. Merge systems for easier cross-referencing. Include a directory of whoever is online, but only if they’re available—and willing—to chat. Finally, invite staff members to upload online training resource materials to the LMS for social learning for the benefit of their colleagues.

Interested in finding out more about implementing a sound social learning strategy in your organization? Download the eBook Social Learning In The Workplace and discover how to improve workplace performance with an LMS for social learning. Encourage peer-based support and create a workplace environment of trust and mentorship by choosing the right social learning software.

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