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Create and manage a chat department

What are departments?

When you create a chat widget, you can choose to have it monitored by an individual operator or a shared department. This not only determines who can answer the incoming chats from this widget, it also determines when the widget will appear online. 

  • If a widget is being monitored by a single operator, then the chat widget will only appear online when that one person is signed into LibChat.
    • When a patron starts a new chat, only that operator will be able to claim it -- even if other operators are signed in.
  • But if a widget is being monitored by an entire department, then the chat widget will appear online when at least one of those people is signed into LibChat.
    • When a patron starts a new chat, any operator in that department will be able to claim it.
    • This can help you distribute the chat workload, while also making it easier to keep your chat service running longer each day.

To manage your chat departments, go to Admin > LibChat Set-up > Departments.

Screenshot showing how to access the Departments page

Adding a new department

  1. Click on the Add New Department button.
  2. Give your department a name (e.g. "Reference", "Circulation", "Tech Help", etc.).
  3. Choose whether or not to assign your department to a queue.
    • When you assign a department to a queue, every user in that queue will be able to monitor chats for that department.
    • If a user has admin-level access to a queue, they will also have admin-level access to the department, as well.
  4. Optionally, you can upload a Department Profile Image. If you're using the Autoload Delay feature of a Slide-Out or Floating widget, this profile image will display alongside the message prompting users to start a chat.
  5. You can also customize the background color of your profile image, as well. Just click in the Profile Image Background Color field to activate the color picker, or enter a hex code for the color you want to use.
  6. Save your changes.
  7. If you chose not to assign your department to a queue in Step 3, you will then be prompted to assign individual users to the department. These will be the people who will be able to claim chats sent to this department.

Adding a new department

Giving the department a name and assigning it to a queue

Assigning users to a department

Managing departments

To manage your existing departments, use the options in the Action column:

  1. To add or remove users, click on the Add Users icon.
  2. To edit the department's name or queue assignment, click on the Edit Department icon.
  3. To delete the department, click on the Delete icon.
    • NOTE: this will permanently delete the department, its statistics, as well as its archived chat transcripts.
Options for managing departments

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