18 January 2018
New Year, New Grants, New Solution
A new year will shortly bring about the Local Government Finance Statement 2018 to 2019, setting the Central Government grants for local councils. Since 2010 these grants have been cut dramatically, therefore councils have had to find alternative ways to increase income and reduce expenditure.
Many local councils around the UK are looking to improve their digital services to make up for any gaps in resources. A way they have been achieving this is by using Click4Assistance live chat on their website.
The instant communication channel helps councils to improve their engagement with residents via their website. Representatives are able to handle more than one enquiry at a time, therefore residents are able to connect to an operator and have their enquiry answered quicker than other methods, such as telephone that can involve being in a queue, or email which can delay receiving a response.
The other benefit to representatives being able to handle multiple enquiries at any one time is that when staff resources are tight, operators can cover the workload whilst being more productive by answering residents simultaneously. Representatives can also ensure they have a high productivity rate by using the functionality available within the Click4Assistance solution.
Ghost text allows to operators to see what the visitor is typing in real time, helping them to gain an understanding of the enquiry before it has been sent. Representatives are able to start forming their response or search the Predefined Replies library for agreed answers to frequently asked questions, this can be edited before sending for a perfect fit.
Another way to increase their efficiency is by signposting the resident to the area on the website that already has the relevant information. This is achieved by using Auto Navigation, a feature in the system that automatically opens a selected page in the visitor’s browser. This encourages the visitor to self-help and give the representative the chance to turn their focus on another resident’s response.
Increase Resident Engagement with ‘Experiences’ by Click4Assistance
We have recently released ‘Experiences’ by Click4Assistance. The new enhanced solution not only includes live chat, but a whole range of tools designed to increase engagement with residents, whilst reducing your resources.
Video chat includes the features of live chat but also contains VoIP and webcam functionality. This allows councils to have digital face-to-face meetings saving time setting up a location and travel arrangements etc.
Most residents nowadays rely on their mobile phones to make phone calls rather than landlines. Calling a council can be expensive outside of their phone plan, especially if they are left waiting in a queue. The Click2Call tool allows residents to request a free phone call via the website. Representatives are alerted instantly to the call request and when accepted both the visitor’s and operator’s phone will connect simultaneously, reducing any queues and the costs to residents.
Most local authorities do not run 24/7, therefore when your representatives are not available the Click4Assistance tools can continue supporting your council to help residents.
The smartContact forms can be completely customised to collect the information required by the organisation. Councils are more likely to use postcodes to help identify the resident, therefore this field can simply be added in, alongside name and contact details. Once a resident has completed a form, it is submitted to an allocated email address. Representatives can also review the details within the software and mark the enquiry as actioned.
Some residents may require help sooner and therefore submitting a smartContact form may not best them best method for them. Councils can encourage residents to self-help by signposting important information or latest news with Promotions. These are Images that display on the website based on the page viewed or for how long the visitor has browsed; a URL is assigned to the Promotion that automatically navigates them to the relevant page. Highlighting key information aids local authorities to reach as many residents as possible.
Click4Assistance has been providing the UK’s best live chat for over 10 years, helping local authorities such as Sunderland City Council, Blackpool Council and Buckinghamshire County Council, to increase their engagement with residents whilst operating with tight resources. For more information on ‘Experiences’ by Click4Assistance contact our local authority co-ordinator on 01268 524628 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.