Admin Quick Start Guide
At Sparkcentral we enable leading innovative brands to improve their customer experience and increase their service operations efficiency. We are a customer service SaaS platform for asynchronous messaging. Sparkcentral allows you to manage all your social and asynchronous messaging channels with human and virtual customer service agents.
Log in to Sparkcentral
Configuring your platform
At Sparkcentral we recognize that every company or brand is unique and employs an individual approach to handling incoming messages on social media and asynchronous messaging channels.
To ensure you have the flexibility to tailor your account preferences to the distinct way you run your business, the Settings section in Sparkcentral provides you with the opportunity to customize several important features and functionalities.
Let’s start at the beginning!
Start by connecting your channels
Connect to your channels of choice. Our connectors make it simple for you to integrate popular third-party channels into your Sparkcentral instance. To add the channels:
- Go to Settings – Channels & Business Hours – Channels
- Click Add Channel
- Select a channel
- Follow the steps from the channel connector
That’s it! You will now receive your messages in Sparkcentral 😁📬
Efficient Queue Management
Now, how to configure your platform so that it enables your agents to work as efficiently as possible?
To help you answer that question we’ve divided this journey into 3 steps.
- Automations and bots
- Routing and prioritization
1. Automations and bots
Sparkcentral offers Admins the ability to customize “Away States” so teams can better track how agents spend their away time from engaging with customers.
This feature will provide more insights into agent productivity, and provide better forecasting, and schedule adherence reports.
To add an Away State an Admin must navigate to Settings–Agent Workspace –Away States and click the Add Away State-button.
Now that you’ve connected your channels, you can determine Business Hours per channel.
Business Hours are the scheduled hours that the agents are available to answer customers.
- Enable During and Outside Business Hours Autoresponder scripts
- Have a better insight into your team’s performance (SLA, Response Times, …)
- Navigate to Channels & Business Hours – Business Hours
- Click Add Business Hours
- Add in your regular business hours
- Add in adjusted business hours for bank holidays
- Appy to your channels
Define your scope
In this part of the configuration, you’ll organize your platform to help your agents understand who it is they’re talking to and what they’re talking about.
You’ll do that using the following features:
- Language detection
- Contact attributes
- Customer segments
- Topics & Tags
When a customer sends you a message, Sparkcentral automatically detects the language used. We support over 60 languages. The language is added to the customer profile as a contact attribute. Customer service agents will always have the option to set a language manually or change it.
The purpose of language detection:
- Let the autoresponder respond to customers in their language
- Route conversations to teams with specific language skills
- Report on the languages used by your customers
- Store the customer language in your CRM
To enable Language Detection
- Go to Settings– Routing & Automation– Language Detection
- Enable with the toggle and select the languages of your choice.
See everything you need to know about your customers right in the agent interface, so your team can provide personalized responses and build strong relationships.
You can configure the Contact view in a way that is helpful for your team. To do so:
- Go to Settings– Agent Workspace–Contact Attributes
- Click on Reorder to organize the existing items
- Click on Add Attribute to add a field of choice
Customer segments will help you to offer a more tailored customer experience.
These segments are based on contact attributes. This can be entered manually, automatically retrieved from a CRM system and some will be populated by the channel, such as the number of Twitter followers.
To configure customer segments:
- Go to Settings– Routing & Automation–Customer Segments
- Click on Add Customer Segments
- Add rule of choice
Topics & Tags
Apply topics and tags to your conversations manually or automatically to organize your team inbox and produce meaningful reports.
- Topics – for routing, prioritization, and reporting on a conversation level
- Tags – for reporting on a message level (part of a conversation)
Go to Settings – Routing & Automation – Topics or Tags and click on Add Topic / Add Tag to add what is relevant for your service operation. We recommend that you use topics that match the structure within other aspects of your business. For example, your website structure, IVR menu option or FAQ topics.
In the Virtual Agent section, you will be able to configure your Auto Responder scripts or connect any chatbot platform. Virtual agents can help your human agents by relieving them from repetitive tasks and collecting information.
Using the auto responder you can ask predefined questions when a customer initiates a conversation. Answers given by a customer can automatically be stored as a contact attribute. If a contact attribute is already filled, the question will not be asked again.
To configure the autoresponder:
- Go to Settings-Virtual Agents
- Choose Auto Responders
- Specify when it should be activated (inception or delegation)
- Build your auto responder script(s) with statements and questions.
- Click Save
💡Use “Question – Contact attribute” to let the Auto Responder automatically fill out a contact attribute.
💡 Create different scripts for inside and outside business hours.
💡Create translations for different languages.
💡 For Twitter and Messenger channels you can set up buttons for quick replies.
Find out how to do that in this article.
Custom Virtual Agents
Connect your bot platform easily to Sparkcentral by adding a Custom Virtual Agent.
2. Routing and Prioritization
Using automation rules in Sparkcentral gives you the ability to asses the conversation context and decide what action needs to be taken. You can automatically:
- Apply topics – The topic of choice will be applied to the conversation
- Apply tags – The tag of choice will be applied to the message
- Resolve conversations – The conversation will be automatically resolved
To configure automation rules:
- Go to Settings– Routing & Automation–Automations
- Click Add automation
- Configure your rules IF/AND/OR.
- Choose the result(s) of the automation (apply topic, apply tag, resolve conversation)
- Select the channels for which you want to activate the automation
- Click Save
A conversation will be put higher in the queue if it has Priority weight. Priority weight is calculated by adding up the number of Priority Topics, Priority Customer Segments, and Priority Channels. Each matched topic gets a weight of 1. The queue will be arranged based on the Priority Weigth (highest – lowest).
To configure prioritization:
- Go to Settings– Routing & Automation–Prioritization
- Select topics that are high priority and click Add as Priority Topic
- Select customer segments that are high priority and click Add as Priority Customer Segment
Select a channel and which conversation type are high priority and clickAdd Priority Channel
❗When topics are added or removed from the priority list, the priority score of a conversation already in the new queue will only change after a change in the status of the conversation (e.g., when it moves from new to pending or pending to new).
To keep your queues clean and uncluttered you can use the auto-resolve functionality. Conversations will be resolved by default after 30 days.
💡For the Pending Queue, 1 day is the most popular setting.
You can find this under Settings– Queue– Preferences :
Agents and Routing Conversations
As a platform admin, you can add and manage the agents in your account. Agents in Sparkcentral can have different permissions, according to their roles. Permissions allow assigning admin and agent permissions.
Go to Settings – Agents and Teams – Agents and use the Add Agent button to create an agent, then fill in the appropriate fields. The email address must be deliverable, so the agent can receive an automated email with password initialization instructions.
When preparing permissions, you can assign permissions based on channel access or team membership. Technically you have to decide if you will route your conversations to the agents based on channel access or based on skills within a specific team.
Channel based access
Assigning access based on channels means the agent will have access to all conversations in the assigned channel(s).
While assigning channel access to an agent you can select the relevant role for that channel. There are 3 different roles that can be assigned:
Viewer 👀 – Allow the agent to read the conversations in this channel
Contributor 💬 – Allow the agent to respond to conversations in this channel
Supervisor 🔎 – Allow the agent to respond to conversations and have access to reporting for this channel
Assigning an agent to a team means the agent will have access to all conversations that match a set of skills assigned to the specific team. Within the team, the agent can again have the viewer, contributor or supervisor role.
❗Each agent can only be assigned to 1 team. We recommend using Channel Based Access for agents who need access to more than 1 team.
How to create a team?
- Go to Teams
- Click Add Team
- Select Topics and/or Customer Segments skills for the team
Optional: Switch the Conversations Without Routing Definition button if you want this team to receive all conversations that are not matched to a team based on topic or segment skills.
- Assign Channel Access to the team
- Add Members to the team.
❗The member list exists of Agents created in the Agents section.
Help for Agents
No need to type the same things on repeat. Each team member can add their personal collection, in addition to the team library.
Start by creating Collections
- Go to Settings – Agent Workspace – Knowledge Base
- Click Add New
- Click Collection
- Name the collection
- Match Channels to the collection
💡To structure your collections it is best to look at a structure that matches your company structure or FAQ topics.
Add snippets and articles to your collections
A snippet is a canned response. After dragging a snippet into the reply box or clicking it, agents will be able to alter the text of the snippet before sending it.
An article can contain formatted text. It will be sent as a URL and will take the reader to a separate page. The text of an article can not be changed by an Agent.
Add a new snippet:
- Click Add New
- Click Snippet
- Click Add New
- Click Article
After clicking the URL of the article, the customer will be taken to a page that looks like this:
Service Level Agreements (SLA)
You can define Service Level Agreement (SLA) service targets in Sparkcentral so that you and your agents can monitor your service level performance and meet your service level goals. Sparkcentral highlights conversations that fail to meet service level targets so that you can promptly identify and address problems.
- Navigate to Settings– Queue–SLA Policies
- Click Add SLA
In order to enable the SLA feature in your instance, you will need to configure the following:
- SLA policies: define how quickly you would like to respond to your customers
- Business hours: set the times is your team available to help customers
- Prioritization rules: change the order of the queue depending on priorities you set
💡 You may want to set different SLA policies for private vs public messages
💡 The conversation response time is usually shorter than the first response time, because you want to keep the conversation flowing naturally. You don’t want to wait longer for a second reply than for the first one.
To give you better insights into the outcome of the conversations your team is having, we have added a new feature called ‘Resolve Reasons’. At the end of a conversation, agents will now have the option to specify why a conversation is being resolved.
Resolve reasons are by default disabled.
Admins can enable this feature by navigating to Settings – Agent Workspace – Resolve Reasons.
You can choose for which channels resolve reason need to be selected by agents. For example, you might want to enable this feature for WhatsApp and Twitter DM, but not for Twitter public posts. Choose what Resolve Reasons you want to include in the selection by simply clicking on the checkboxes, and then click on Save.
Resolve Reasons is a huge feature we offer. To learn more about using it with reporting, Bulk Resolves, and channel specific settings, read up in our complete helpcenter article over at: https://help.sparkcentral.com/knowledge-base/resolve-reasons/
Customer Satisfaction Survey (CSAT)
To use the CSAT feature, you also need to enable resolve reasons. Only conversations resolved with resolve reason ‘resolution provided’ will be surveyed.
Surveys can be used across all channels and can be created in multiple languages. You can create multiple surveys if you want to send different versions depending on the channel.
Add a new survey in Settings – Virtual Agents – CSAT Surveys and click on Add CSAT Survey.
Add a name to your survey and configure the following:
- Do you want all closed conversations to be surveyed, or a random percentage?
- Choose the moment you want to send the survey after closing a conversation; immediate or with a delay.
- Choose the frequency of your survey for each unique customer. If customers have multiple conversations shortly after each other, you might only want to send this survey once every 2 months for example.
- Set a minimum length for the response sent to a customer before sending a survey. If an agent response is really short, it might not make a lot of sense to send a survey.
- Send a survey in the customers’ language only or use the default if the language is unknown.
- Set up keywords to stop or skip the survey.
- Configure your survey for customers who aren’t responsive or choose for a time out if answers can’t be detected.
We have pre-filled an example CSAT question and answers for you. Click on any of the fields to edit the content. You can keep the default settings (“Very satisfied” – “Very unsatisfied”) or be creative and use Emojis for the responses.