How can live chat help keep the conversation flowing between students, faculty, staff, management, parents and stake-holders in education
As a former school pupil, kindergarten teacher and university student, let me share with you some of my experiences and how I would have loved having a live chat solution at my disposal to take care of various issues quickly and efficiently. If the institution I studied or worked in would have used live chat, my life and the life of my colleagues would have been much easier.
This post is inspired by October 5th, International Teachers’ Day, as decreed by the UN and celebrated with its own Google Doodle.
How live chat can help if you are a school pupil
During my first 8 school years, I could virtually give no feedback to any of my teachers. Or to anyone in the school board for that matter. Of course, most of this had to do with the style of education and the times, however, now I am very much dismayed by the fact that pupils had virtually no voice.
20 years after I graduated from the first school cycle (8th grade), the world is totally different. If back then, the Internet was still a novelty and we were all using dial-up connections and e-mail and cellphones were a THING, nowadays most interactions of school pupils are digital. At least in the urban areas, many pupils have smartphones and have been using PCs and tablets from an early age. But that is not all.
Pupils nowadays want and demand a voice. The old school style (yes, pun intended) of teaching and learning simply doesn’t cut it anymore. Nowadays, pupils interact with classmates and teachers via WhatsApp or Discord. The normal and natural next step is for the school administration to adopt a digital communication channel as well. Live chat can come in very handy when a pupil or parent needs to get in touch with the school for dealing with necessary documents, details about the curriculum or various other information; best part, it can be done by live video.
By using live chat, an education institution can create a great relationship between the school, students and parents. Children and teenagers will feel listened to and thus will develop a deeper connection with the institution, one that goes beyond the course content or test results. Pupils love feeling comfortable and to be able to easily identify themselves as part of the community.
How live chat can help if you are a teacher
When I was a kindergarten teacher (it was a long time ago, during my student years and yes, I know what you’re thinking – Arnold Schwarzenegger in the movie Kindergarten Cop – totally accurate), I used to divide my time between teaching the children (about 50%), avoiding dangerous situations in which the children would put themselves (about 25% of the time) and sharing documents with my fellow co-workers and parents.
I used to make lesson plans that needed to be shared with parents. However, not all parents used e-mail, plus not all would let me have their Facebook ID. I used to wait for the parents when they would pick up the children, give them the lesson plans and explain to them how classes worked and helped. To make a long story short, there was a lot of time wasted. Sometimes, parents would arrive at different times and most of them were in a hurry, so a lesson plan would be shared and explained throughout the best part of the week. Sometimes I would have to pick up the phone during the evening to go through the lesson plan again with some parents.
Live chat can create a more efficient working environment by eliminating disrupting phone calls and unifying office hours. With the file sharing function, documents can be easily transferred to the proper recipients, without the need to disrupt classes or office hours. Phone calls would have probably gone down to a minimum and surely they wouldn’t have taken place in the evening. I would have very much benefitted from being able to use live chat back then.
How live chat can help if you are a university student
Drawing on my experience as a student and also on the experiences of co-workers and friends, I can now safely say, without fear of being wrong: the single worst experience we all had during our university years was the time we had to spend in line for the secretary’s office.
Every time a new document was needed or a some sort of bureaucratic process needed to be completed, we all knew what that meant. First, we would have to call the secretary’s office (during office hours, of course); then we would have to queue to get the necessary documents. Then we would have to fill them. And then we would have to queue again in order to hand in the documents and sign for the completion of the process. If a single document was wrongly filled, the process would have to start again. Not to mention the process would be especially difficult for international students since not all of them spoke the local language. And all this happened while most of us were juggling both classes and a full-time job.
Live chat increases secretary office availability, even with a limited schedule. Office agents can have multiple conversations at one time. Also, when office hours are over, a chatbot can take over the conversation. If it is one thing that students and visitors hate, that is long waiting times and queuing for hours to get a simple answer or a necessary document. With live chat, frequently asked questions can be quickly answered and necessary documents can be quickly shared. Then they can be correctly filled and sent via file sharing. Also, these would be available in multiple languages, lending a helping hand to international students as well. This way, students and parents can go faster through the red tape and get back to classes and jobs.
Again, I wish live chat would have been available during my university years.
Since this post is inspired by International Teachers’ Day and we are proposing software to help education efficiency, here is another tip: Netop Vision, the classroom management unit within our mother company. Vision saves time, enhances learning, keeps students safe and helps teachers do more in less time.
Kindergartens, schools and universities can use Live Guide Chat to do more of what they are great at and spend less time undertaking administrative tasks.
Try Live Guide Chat for 14 days for FREE
Live Guide Chat offers a tailor-made chat solution that will enable you to offer live chat everywhere. Contact us today for a live demo of Live Guide Chat or start a free trial to see for yourself, how chat will improve the customer service experience and increase efficiency.
Netop develops and sells market leading software solutions, enabling quick, secure and easy transfer of video, sound and data between two or more computers. We have done this for more than 30 years and we have used this knowledge to make Live Guide the most secure and reliable solution on the market. Live Guide helps companies deliver excellent customer service, reduce support costs comply with strict security demands.