Ending an AskAway Session: How else can we help?

Knowing when to end an AskAway session can be tough sometimes. When AskAway is swamped, or the patron has been uncommunicative for awhile, or perhaps appears to be disconnecting from the session… How can we successfully close the session for the patron?

Here’s a few tips!  Make use of the many scripts available to consistently handle these situations. Located under Staff Tools >> Tools for your shift >> Scripts & URLs AND in your chat monitor.

  1. Let the patron know we’re handling multiple questions but their question is important to us. If we’re swamped handling in-depth questions can be difficult!  Use Scripts: Begin – Busy Swamped, Begin – Multiple Questions & Queue – Multiple Questions
  2. Offer additional options early on in the chat session. Letting them know additional Reference options are available can ease frustration. Use Scripts: Refer – Home Library, Refer – Subject Specialist & Queue – Impatient patron
  3. Make sure you check the patron has enough to get started. Ask if they’d like any additional assistance with their original question or if they have any other questions before closing. Use Scripts: Close – Anything else?
  4. Has your patron stopped communicating? Check-out the Patron Status Indicators in the chat monitor for current info on them. Try to wait for the “Patron is no longer connected.” message before closing the session and send them additional resources if possible. Use Scripts: TechTrouble – Refresh Browser & TechProb – More Resources
  5. Inform them you’re going to end the chat. Give them a chance to respond before closing the session and if your shift is ending try to transfer any idle questions to new librarians to follow-up or close. Use Scripts: Close – Left Session
  6. Tell your patron early on about the Email Transcript option. Patrons often return to the closed session and may feel frustrated it ended without explanation. If they accidentally disconnect or you need to close their session they’ll receive the transcript explaining what happened! Use Scripts: Begin – Transcript or Begin – Transcript (Qwidget) scripts

Questions or comments? Please feel free to contact the AskAway Admin Centre.

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