Personalised Sound Notifications for Omnichannel

One of the themes running through the Wave 2 2020 update for Omnichannel is the personalisation aspect. Though systems work just fine on their own, it’s always nice to add a ‘personal touch’ to the parts that we can. Last week I shared how quick replies are now able to be personalised (Personalised Quick Replies). This week I’m going to go into how the sound notifications can be personalised as well!

These seem to be just small little features, but in my view they do bring things to the next level. Examples of this are the following:

  • If a customer session starts, wanting to know which channel it’s come in through, without needing to open the conversation
  • Many agents in a contact centre – if everyone is using the same sound, no-one knows if it’s their computer or not!
  • The different between a new conversation starting, and a new message being received on an existing conversation
  • Wanting to ensure that sound volumes aren’t too high, else they’ll disturb other people.

All of these are extremely valid scenarios, along with other ones (such as disabling sound entirely, for example!). Though this seems simple to implement, and isn’t very difficult to set it, there’s a lot of flexibility involved. I’m therefore really happy that this is now available to be used.

So, let’s see how to go about setting it up. There are two parts to this – the Omnichannel Administrator side, and what the Agent can then do

Omnichannel Administrator

In the Omnichannel Administrator Hub, the administrator should open the Notifications section, and go to the Sound Notification Settings tab:

There’s a single setting there, to toggle sound notifications on or off. Setting it to ‘Yes’ will then show the following section on the screen:

Once it’s enabled, there are then a number of system default options that are automatically loaded. Here the administrator can do the following tasks:

  • Choose to allow sounds to be played at a per channel level
  • Change the system default sound notification (more on loading in custom sounds below)
  • Allow the sound notification to be repeated until the call is answered
  • Set the maximum volume allowed for the sound (this is a lovely slider control!)

There are of course sound files that come included in the system by default. But what if we’re wanting to upload custom sound files to be used? Well, that’s not a problem. Simply by clicking in the lookup field to select a sound file, we are given the option to upload a new audio file:

Clicking this brings up the Audio File record, which we use to upload. We need to give it a name & save it, and then we’re given the ability to upload the file itself:

Note: There are specific file types that need to be used, with a maximum file size of 1MB. It does say that for best experience to use the OGG file format. There are plenty of free resources out there to download OGG files, or to convert MP3 files to the OGG file format if you need

Once we’ve uploaded the file, we get presented with a mini player to hear how it sounds. This is really cool!

All of the audio files in the system (both default & custom) are then available for agents to personalise their own experience

Note: If a company wants to upload many different custom audio files, it may be easier to add the Audio Files entity to the sitemap, and then perform this function from there

Note: To prevent agents from uploading their own audio files directly, the Omnichannel Agent security role only allows Read access, not Create/Edit access:

Omnichannel Agent

With the initial system setup performed by the Omnichannel Administrator, agents are then free to go ahead & personalise their own experience. This is done directly within the Omnichannel for Customer Service app, by selecting ‘Personalisation’ from the available menu:

Once this is selected, the agent is presented with a very similar interface to the Omnichannel Administrator:

Here the agent can change the system default for themselves (this does not affect any other Omnichannel users), change the various settings, modify the volume levels, etc.

Once saved, it’s then live & active, and will work as desired.

Incoming message alerts for active sessions

At the bottom of the sound notification settings screen, there is one further setting. This is around the behaviour of sounds for existing conversations:

This can be helpful (either from an overall system perspective, or an individual agent perspective) to either allow or turn off sounds from conversations that are already happening. Some people might find it very annoying that every time a customer sends a new message through, the system plays a sound. This is especially true when dealing with multiple conversations (which, after all, is what Omnichannel is all about!)

In summary, it’s a really good feature to have now at our convenience to use. Obviously I’d suggest not to load rock music into it, for example, unless of course your company specialises in rock music! How do you think this would be beneficial to your users? Drop a comment below – I’d love to hear!

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