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Higher Education

San Jose, California, U.S.

Comm100 Live Chat & AI Chatbot

Comm100 customer
Since 2014

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The Results in Numbers

55% – chats managed by Comm100 Chatbots
4.3 – average live chat CSAT
8 – departments

The Organization

San Jose State University, located in the heart of Silicon Valley, is public university in San Jose, California. Established in 1857, SJSU is the oldest public university on the West Coast and the founding campus of the California State University system. With a diverse student population of over 30,000, the university prides itself on offering a range of courses tailored to the demands of the modern world.

The Challenge

The digital expectations of today’s students have transformed the landscape of student communication and support in higher education. Today’s students expect support that is convenient, fast, and available. Recognizing that phone and email communication alone couldn’t meet these needs, SJSU decided to enhance its digital support offering to students, staff and faculty.

The Solution & Results

Wanting to provide convenient and fast communication, while helping departments to better manage high support volumes, SJSU learnt that live chat and chatbots were the answer. While some departments were already offering live chat, this software didn’t offer the features and capabilities that SJSU needed. In 2014, after thorough research, SJSU chose Comm100 for its live chat software and integrated AI Chatbot, launching it within the Registrar Office.

After great success, and accelerated by the Covid-19 pandemic, Comm100 was steadily expanded into more and more departments. Eight departments now utilize Comm100 Live Chat, Chatbot, or both. Within just three months, ten departments went live with Comm100 with the help of Comm100’s expert training and AI teams. The gradual and strategic rollout across all eight departments showcased the versatility and scalability of Comm100’s platform. Every department, with its unique challenges and goals, has found great success and value in the products.

Across departments, students, faculty and staff now have access to immediate, 1-1 support via Comm100 Live Chat. This is having immediate and transformative impacts across the university’s goals. While Admissions is increasing enrollment with personalized and attentive support, Academic Advising is improving engagement to strengthen student retention. Crucially, chats can be instantly routed between departments, streamlining support and ensuring students and faculty get the answer they’re looking for.

The popularity of Comm100 Live Chat is evident, with an impressive 4.3 customer satisfaction rating (CSAT) across departments from October 2022 – October 2023. The university handles over 4,000 live chats a month on average.

Alongside Comm100 Live Chat, 18 departments have adopted Comm100 AI Chatbot to improve team efficiency. With a bot in place, SJSU can now automate the majority of queries that are often simple and repetitive, but time-consuming to answer and cause significant backlogs.

With Comm100 AI Chatbot set up across these departments, 55% of all chats are managed by Comm100 bots. As well as putting an end to overwhelming support volumes, the bots have also improved the user experience as students and faculty can now receive even faster responses – and at any time of the day or week.

The Key Features

There were several key features that helped Comm100 stand out from its competitors, and help SJSU to enhance its student communication offering:

  • Customized department setup: Individual departments can be set up with specific settings and rules to address their specific needs.
  • User-friendly platform: The Comm100 agent console has been reported to be very easy to use for admins running and adjusting setup, and for agents using the platform on a day-to-day basis.
  • Customization: SJSU were impressed by Comm100’s proactive approach to learning and addressing SJSU’s goals, coupled with the company’s openness to tailor features to the university’s specific needs.
  • Flexible branding: SJSU can customize Comm100 Live Chat and Chatbot to maintain their brand and create a consistent and professional image.
  • Security compliance: Comm100 is compliant with every security and privacy regulation that higher education institutions require, as well as HIPAA, TX-RAMP, and PIPEDA.

The Onboarding & Training

The transition to Comm100 was smooth, thanks to a meticulously planned onboarding process from Comm100’s expert training and AI teams. Here are the key steps to SJSU’s onboarding and training that Comm100 follows for each customer:

Step 1: Training needs analysis

Work with individual departments to understand their specific use cases and learn about the different groups they served, whether that be prospective students, undergraduates, graduates, staff, faculty members etc.

Step 2: Content development and delivery planning

Planning and creation of instructor-led content, recorded video content, open door Q&A sessions and a wealth of hard-copy material, specific for each department.

Step 3: Tailored training sessions based on Department needs

Training delivered to departments depending on situation and product experience, with four main phased rollouts. Live sessions were delivered based on Department availability and needs. Some Departments started off with Live Chat, some with Live Chat and Bot and other Bot first before adding Live Chat when they had more staff capacity. The flexibility of the onboarding enabled the departments to choose the best option for them.

Step 4: Evaluation

Feedback to assess department learning and training improvements were regularly offered and requested to understand gaps in knowledge and ensure staff felt confident using the platform.

Step 5: Post-onboarding support

After launch, continuing weekly Cadence meetings to provide progress updates to their upper management and deliver ad-hoc assistance to their departments through Comm100 Commpanion Services.

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