Setting up shared queues and chat departments with other LibAnswers systems

What are shared systems?

LibAnswers allows you to collaborate with colleagues at other LibAnswers systems through shared ticket queues and chat departments. This allows you to transfer tickets & chats between LibAnswers systems (e.g. one campus library to another), or monitor and answer tickets & chats in a completely shared queued (e.g. state-wide reference service). What's more, your staff can manage these shared tickets and chats right alongside your institution's local queues and chat departments.

Although there are a lot of potential uses for sharing systems, some common ones include:

  • Library consortia
  • State-wide reference and/or chat service
  • Public library systems with multiple branches
  • University library systems with multiple campuses
  • School districts

How do I set up sharing with other LibAnswers systems?

Requirements

  • Each library you want to collaborate with must have LibAnswers v2.
  • A list of those systems who have agreed to share with you.
    • If possible, please provide the Site ID from each system, which can be found under Admin > System Settings > General > Institution Information in LibAnswers.
    • Otherwise, please provide the URL for each system.

Steps

  1. Contact the Springy Support team. Please provide the complete list of libraries you want to share with, including their Site IDs and/or system URLs.
  2. We'll confirm that your request was received, then get to work on setting this up for you.
  3. Once the process is complete, or if we have any questions, we'll follow up with you. (Please allow 1-2 business days for us to set everything up.)

How can I see which systems I'm sharing with?

Once sharing has been set up, you can see a complete list of the systems you're sharing with by going to Admin > System Settings > General > Sharing Information.

The Sharing Information box


How do I share a queue?

Share one of your queues with another system

  1. Go to Admin > Queues.
  2. On the Manage Queues page, the Shared column will indicate whether sharing is currently enabled for each queue. Click on a View/Edit Sharing icon () to manage the sharing settings for that queue.
    • If the View/Edit Sharing icon is green (), that means you are currently sharing that queue with another system.
    • If the icon is red (), that means the queue is not currently being shared.
  3. In the Queue Sharing window, you can manage the permissions for each system with which you are sharing. Use the dropdown next to each system to select a permission level; or, use one of the Set all systems to buttons to apply the same permission to all systems at once.
    • None: this means the selected system cannot access this queue.
    • Transfer Only: the selected system will be able to transfer tickets to this queue from one of their local queues.
    • Answer & Transfer: in addition to transferring tickets to this queue, users at the selected system will also be able to monitor and answer tickets in it, as well -- just like it was one of their own local queues.
  4. Click the Save button. You can return to these options at any time to change or disable sharing for this queue.

The Queue Sharing window

Assigning local users to a queue shared with you by another system

  1. Go to Admin > Queues.
  2. At the bottom of the page, the Queues shared from other systems table will list all queues being shared with you. The Access Level column will indicate your sharing permissions with this department.
    • Transfer Only: the users you assign to this queue can only transfer tickets to it.
    • Answer & Transfer: the users you assign to this queue can not only transfer tickets to it, but can also monitor and reply to incoming tickets.
  3. Before you can share with that queue, you must first assign users to it -- just like you would with a local queue. To do this, click on the Add Users to this Shared Queue () icon in the Action column.
  4. In the Add Users to Shared Queue window, click on the dropdown and select the users you would like to answer and/or transfer tickets for this queue.
  5. Click the Save button. You can return to this window at any time to add or remove users. 

The Add Users to Shared Queue window


How do I share a LibChat department?

Share one of your departments with another system

  1. Go to Admin > LibChat Set-up.
  2. Under the Departments tab on the LibChat Settings page, the Shared column will indicate whether sharing is currently enabled for each department. Click on a View/Edit Sharing icon () to manage the sharing settings for that department.
    • If the View/Edit Sharing icon is green (), that means you are currently sharing that department with another system.
    • If the icon is red (), that means the department is not currently being shared.
  3. In the Chat Department Sharing window, you can manage the permissions for each system with which you are sharing. Use the dropdown next to each system to select a permission level; or, use one of the Set all systems to buttons to apply the same permission to all systems at once.
    • None: this means the selected system cannot access this department.
    • Transfer Only: the selected system will be able to transfer chats to this department from one of their local departments or operators.
    • Monitor & Transfer: in addition to transferring chats to this department, users at the selected system will also be able to monitor and answer chats in it, as well -- just like it was one of their own local departments.
  4. Click the Save button. You can return to these options at any time to change or disable sharing for this department.

The Chat Department Sharing window

Assigning local users to a department shared with you by another system

  1. Go to Admin > LibChat Set-up.
  2. Under the Departments tab on the LibChat Settings page, the Departments shared from other systems table at the bottom of the page will list all departments being shared with you. The Access Level column will indicate your sharing permissions with this department.
    • Transfer Only: the users you assign to this department can only transfer chats to it.
    • Monitor & Transfer: the users you assign to this department can not only transfer chats to it, but can also monitor and answer incoming chats.
  3. Before you can share with that department, you must first assign users to it -- just like you would with a local chat department. To do this, click on the Add Users to this Shared Department () icon in the Action column.
  4. In the Add Users to Shared Department window, use the dropdowns to select individual users and/or queues to assign to it.
    • Note: if you assign a queue to the department, all users assigned to that queue will also be assigned to the department. You will not need to select the users in that queue individually.
  5. Click the Save button. You can return to this window at any time to add or remove users. 

The Add Users to Shared Department window

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