Monthly Archives: October 2017

Zendesk Agent Scripting App – Version 10

If you’re a Zendesk user in a Contact Center environment,  you’ll want to be using our Zendesk Agent Scripting app.  This makes it easy to guide, train and onboard agents and is a huge productivity booster for everyone.

The Agent Scripting app appears as a button in the right-hand panel:

Click Open Script, and you’ll see your decision tree in a pop-over like this:

 

Benefits of the Zendesk Agent Scripting App

  • Standardization: Show a guided path for each ticket, so that Agents follow the proper operating policies or troubleshooting procedures.
  • Pause and Resume: If a ticket is transferred, the supervisor or new agent is taken to the last place in the script, and can see the history of the previous steps taken.
  • Automatic Script Selection: The Agent Scripting App can choose a script based upon the Zendesk brand, Zendesk ticket tags, or the value of a custom field.
  • Agent Feedback: Agents can send feedback directly to the authors of the decision trees with a single button click. Feedback is delivered to each author’s email, and includes the tree ID and node number where the feedback was sent from.
  • Automatic Ticket Updating: Tags and custom fields in the ticket can be updated from actions in the script – either via buttons clicked in the script, or from data entry collected.

New Features in Version 10

If  you’re using a previous version of the Zendesk Agent Scripting app, you may want to upgrade to take advantages of these new benefits:

  • Pop-overs: Scripts now appear as pop-overs, rather than being constrained to the right-hand panel.
  • Ticket Updating: Your tickets can automatically update by navigating the script, or by entering data into Zingtree Data Entry Fields. For example, the start of your script could offer the agent a choice of a product, and the “product” field in your ticket will be automatically selected when the agent makes a choice.

Note: Don’t remove the current version of Agent Scripting until you are ready to make the switch. Versions 9 and earlier may not be updated going forward.

Getting Started

Here are the basic steps to get up and running:

  1. Build an interactive decision tree script with Zingtree (or use one of our demos to start).
  2. Install the Agent Scripting App (version 10) into Zendesk.
  3. Configure the Agent Scripting app within Zendesk.
  4. If you want to have your decision tree scripts update your  Zendesk tickets, you’ll need to add variables and/or tags to your Zingtree tree to match your Zendesk setup.
  5. If you want to enable automatic script selection, you’ll need to add tags to your trees in Zingtree and configure the Zendesk Agent Scripting app properly.

Installing the Agent Scripting App into Zendesk

Download and configure the Zendesk Agent Scripting App version 10 like so:

  1. Download the Agent Scripting app here.
  2. In Zendesk, click the Admin icon and go to Apps > Manage.

  3. Click Upload Private App.

  4. The Upload App page appears.

  5. Enter “Zingtree Agent Scripting” for the App Name.
  6. For App File, locate the file zingtree-agent-scripting-v10.zip you downloaded in step 1.
  7. Click Upload, then confirm if necessary.

Configuring the App

Once you’ve uploaded the app, click App Configuration to see the configuration screen:

Here’s what each item does:

Tree ID: This is the default tree that appears when agents click “Open Script”.  (You should always have a default tree.)

Hide Integration Setup Info: When you are setting up Agent Scripting for the first time, you may need some information about your Zendesk setup to take advantage of automatically updating ticket fields. An “Integration Setup Info” link appears by default when you first install the app, and ticking this option hides it.

Match Tree Tags to Zendesk Brand: If this option is checked, the subdomain of the selected brand will be matched to a Zingtree tree tag.  Any matching tree or trees will appear.  For example, if the brand subdomain is xyz.zendesk.com, any trees tagged as xyz (using the Zingtree Settings tool) will appear.

Match Tree Tags to Zendesk Ticket Tags: If checked, the values in the Zendesk ticket tags will be matched with your Zingtree tree tags (set via the Zingtree Settings tool) to show one or more matching scripts.

Match Tree Tags to values in a Custom field: If you want to use a custom field value to show matching scripts, enter the Zendesk custom field identifier here. The field name can be found using the Integration Setup Info link that first appears in the sidebar when you install the app.

Zingtree API key: Each organization in Zingtree has an API key, which is used to match scripts. If you’re using one of the tag matching options, this is required. Your API key can be found at zingtree.com under Help, API.

Enabling Automatic Script Selection

Automatic Script Selection works by matching tree tags you set in Zingtree to values in the Brand, Tags, or a custom field in a Zendesk ticket. For example, if a tree is tagged with “astrology”, and the ticket tags include “astrology”, then that tree appears. If several trees match, then they will all appear, and the agent can choose one.

To open a script based upon Brand:

  • Add tags to your trees for each brand you want to match. So if one of your brands is xyz.zendesk.com, use xyz as a tree tag in Zingtree for all the trees you want to show.
  • Make sure Match Tree Tags to Zendesk Brand is checked in the App Configuration.

To open a script based upon Zendesk ticket tags:

  • Add tags to your trees for each tag you want to match. So if one of your ticket tag possibilities is “billing”, use billing as a tree tag in Zingtree for all the trees you want to show.
  • Make sure Match Tree Tags to Zendesk Ticket Tags is checked in the App Configuration.

To open a script based upon a custom field:

  • Add tags to your trees for each possible custom field value you want to match. So if one of your custom field values is “billing”, use billing as a tree tag in Zingtree for all the trees you want to show.
  • Make sure the proper Zendesk field variable name is entered for  Match Tree Tags to values in a Custom Field is checked in the App Configuration.


Adding tags to a tree in Zingtree is done like this:

  1. Select a tree from My Trees.
  2. Go to the Settings tool.
  3. Enter or select a tag from the Tags field.

  4. Click Update Settings.

How to Configure to Update Ticket Fields

As agents navigate through your trees, their use of the decision tree scripts you create can automatically update any custom fields in that ticket. This can be done in two ways:

  • By clicking a button in a script
  • By entering data into Zingtree data entry fields.

The key is to use variable names in your Zingtree that match the ones used in Zendesk.

First of all, determine the names of the variables in Zendesk by clicking the Integration Setup Info link in the Agent Scripting app. You’ll see something like this:

You’ll see the label for the field as it appears in Zendesk’s ticket form, and the Zendesk variable next to it. In the above example, the Product custom field variable is custom_field_22899289. This is a drop-down selector, and the Zendesk values for the field options are astrology and insurance.

For the rest of this example, we’ll use custom_field_22899289 as the custom field variable.

To make a button selection update a custom field, you’ll set it up in your Zingtree as follows:

  1. Go to the Overview tool, and edit the node whose button selections will update the ticket.
  2. Click Edit Buttons (or Add Buttons if you don’t have any buttons defined). The button editor appears:

  3. Make sure Assign Button Click Variable is checked. This makes the other options appear.
  4. For the Button Click Variable, enter your custom field variable from Zendesk (custom_field_22899289 in the example).
  5. For each button option, enter the value of the variable under Score/Value. If this is a drop-down list in your Zendesk ticket, you’ll need to make sure the Score/Value entered matches one of the drop-down option values as shown in the Integration Setup Info.
  6. Click Save Changes when you’re done configuring buttons.

Bonus: Adding Tags via button clicks:

Button clicks can also add tags to a ticket. In the above example, clicking Something Else adds the tag other_tag to the ticket. Just include the tag name with two colons after the button text. So entering a button like Something Else::other_tag will add the tag other_tag to the ticket if this is clicked, but agents will only see Something Else as an option.

Using Zingtree Data Entry Fields to Update Tickets

Just like the above example, you can also use Zingtree for data entry, and have that data automatically transferred to your ticket. The key is to use the same variable name in Zingtree as you used in Zendesk. The Integration Setup Info link in the sidebar will give you those Zendesk variable names.

Example: If you have a text entry field in Zingtree you want to update into the Zendesk field custom_field_1234, you would set up the variable name as follows:

 

Try It with Example Data

You can use trees from the Zingtree Gallery to see how the Agent Scripting app works.

For a single tree, enter ’14’ as the Tree ID. This will show an Astrology website troubleshooter example.

For multiple trees, see how a tree can be selected by tag by doing the following:

  1. Enter 6a103737e44e4aa6e1e4b6b0bcb46f83 as the API key.
  2. Make sure Match Tree Tags to Zendesk Ticket Tags is checked.
  3. Try entering one or more of these tags into a ticket: “zingtree”, “astrology”, “pet_rock”.

Any questions? We’re always here to help

Zendesk Users: Meet Zingtree at the Zendesk Relate 2017 Conference

Our decision trees and agent scripts are hitting the road! The Zendesk Relate 2017 event hits New York City on October 23 – 25. As an official sponsor of the conference this year, we’re feeling a little extra excitement to be feet-on-the-ground with people and organizations that use Zendesk every day.

Here’s a little more about the event this year:

Relate by Zendesk is home to a diverse selection of expert content and deep thoughts from Zendesk. It connects the business side of what Zendesk does—create software for improving customer interactions—to the more general human desire for better relationships.

Zendesk is a platform built with ease of customer support and relationship-building in mind. Good communication means everything where customer interactions are concerned – no matter which industry you may be a part of.

The Relate Live conference series is designed to help businesses and entrepreneurs explore the complicated nature of customer relationships. It’s packed with training workshops, breakout sessions, and thought-provoking keynotes by industry leaders. Plus, there are wicked cool networking events.

Past presenters include Dr. Heidi Grant-Halvorson, author of No One Understands You and What to Do About It, Jon Ronson, writer of So You’ve Been Publicly Shamed, and Davy Rothbart from This American Life.

As a company with Zendesk app solutions for streamlining customer support and improving agent-based communications, we can’t wait to meet other organizations looking into improving their own support strategies.

Will you be there? Come visit us at the Startup Pavilion.

Learn more information about Zendesk Relate 2017 here.

Take a look at our Zendesk Support app and Zendesk Agent Scripting app here.

How Decision Trees for Insurance Can Simplify Policies & Procedures

decision trees for insurance

Having exceptional customer service isn’t reserved for typical B2C companies. In such a tumultuous and often scary industry (for consumers, at least), insurance companies and agents must also take a close look at how their customers are perceiving the assistance they are getting. Understanding is also a huge part of this customer experience. Why? Because insurance is complicated.

Improving Insurance Call with Decision Tree Scripts

For many insurance companies, automation is an angle that’s gaining traction for providing more streamlined and consistent customer service. Our partnership with EasyInsuranceScripts.com is a great example of how decision trees are being used to simplify.

Simply put, Ted Baker, the Founder of EasyInsuranceScripts.com, envisioned a more streamlined way to improve how independent insurance agents were being trained, guided through complicated conversations and policy selections, and processing claims. In an industry with so many small, yet important, details to be understood, these conversations and processes can become intimidating very quickly.

With our own knowledge and experience in simplifying the complex, we knew decision trees would be an ideal fit. Joining forces between Zingtree and EasyInsuranceScripts.com has allowed Ted’s services to offer the most comprehensive set of resources for independent insurance agents as a result.

“It’s amazing that I’m able to automate all of this for independent insurers,” says Ted. “For me, the ROI of decision trees is immediate. Introducing standardized decision tree scripts for insurance has allowed the insurers in my network to really thrive. With scripts for guiding conversations, interactive trees to train new agents, and the reporting that comes along with it, agents are able to provide a better customer experience that’s consistent and informative.“

Hard Numbers: Where the Data Fits In

While each insurance agent or organization may have varying experiences, industry knowledge is key in understanding how much this kind of customer service and care matters for insurance. McKinsey recently published an article on how focusing on improving customer experience has a direct effect on growth and profit in the insurance industry:

McKinsey’s global research across industries shows that improving the customer experience can do far more to drive profitable growth than raising advertising spending or lowering prices. Some executives may still see insurance as a low-engagement, disintermediated category, but analytics prove that in an industry where profits are highly concentrated, leading carriers are delivering customer experiences that inspire loyalty and attract new customers frustrated by their experiences with their current carriers.

Here’s a handy chart that helps to summarize how insurers must improve the customer journey:

 

A typical insurance carrier today delivers customer experiences via separate functions (marketing, distribution, underwriting, claims), using a website, sales call center, service department, and so on, most managed by different executives with different goals and metrics. This structure may have its purposes, but it overlooks the fact that from the customer perspective, the experience is often a single journey.

Real-World Example: Decision Tree for Insurance

Here’s a sample tree, derived from one of the Easy Insurance Scripts trees:

 

 

Have any questions? You can learn more about how to simplify insurance products and processes on our site or feel free to reach out directly.

5 Outdated Customer Support Tools You Need to Ditch

Customer service agents have always been at the heart of what makes companies, and their customer communications, so incredibly important to business success. However, certain resources aren’t always up to the job. Armed with only outdated customer support tools, it’s difficult for an agent or customer service representative to perform their tasks, and help people, to the best of their ability.

Thankfully, technology has done a great job of keeping up; there are dozens of amazing tools to help businesses small and large improve how they handle support and troubleshooting, customer interactions, and other key communications. If you’re still using an outdated tool or method like the ones mentioned here, now’s the time to make a change for the better.

Setting Up Spreadsheets to Track Issues

We’ll always love spreadsheets (heck, Zingtrees even connect with them for quick creation!), but using them as a means of manually tracking the details of tickets and inquiries is a definite resource-waster. The details of every customer call are important, so adopting a more automated way to enter key information during a call or via an online support ticket is vital to improving customer service goals. Don’t tackle it cell-by-cell. You waste precious time and this method is prone to errors.

Using Standard Email for Tickets

Using Outlook for support? Gmail? Yahoo? We certainly hope not, but if you are, there’s still time to make things right and upgrade to a real support system. A solid CRM tool like Zendesk or  Freshdesk isn’t as daunting or expensive as you might think, and can easily track and organize every incoming ticket. After getting started and connecting all of your communication channels, you can even integrate with decision trees for a completely holistic setup.

Sending Customers Through a Phone Tree

The most impersonal of all contact channels, a phone tree is as hard to set up as it is for customers to wait through. While still critical for some industries to offer in order to contact a live agent, others benefit from building a better system online and on mobile. Roughly 72% of people think self-service support is a preferred way to handle customer support, so using decision trees can help customers navigate for themselves, find answers, and contact the right department for more information.

Printing Out Call Scripts on Paper

Not only is printing bad for the environment, it’s cumbersome and unnecessary. While customer support and call center agents should be prepared with a script on hand, there’s always a technical way to make things more efficient. Taking the digital plunge and creating an online call center script for agent use will improve support KPIs, make it simple to streamline communication, and leave customers happier with every standardized, personalized interaction.


Any questions? We’re always here to help!

This article was originally published on April 13, 2017.

Decision Trees with Logic Nodes

In order to make decision trees that can help solve real-world problems, sometimes you need the ability to do more than just choose a path based upon a finite set of choices. For these reasons, we’ve introduced Logic Nodes into Zingtree.

In addition, we’ve found that many of our customer’s integrations are passing data variables into Zingtree, and there are situations where they would like to act on the value of those variables. Logic Nodes make this easy.

If you’re an existing Zingtree author, Logic Nodes replace Scoring Nodes from previous versions. Any tree that is using Scoring Nodes is automatically migrated to this new system, without losing any functionality or you having to do any updating of your trees.

Here’s How Logic Nodes Work

When you edit or create a Logic Node, you’ll see something like this:

Logic Nodes test the value of your Zingtree variables with a series of rules and jump to a node when a condition is met. The rules are applied in order, so once a rule condition is met, the node assigned to the rule opens next. You can also assign a default node to jump to in case no rules apply.

In the example above, if the variable fruit equals banana, then Zingtree will open node #8, the “Banana” node. If fruit is watermelon, then the default “Something Else” node opens.

About Variables

Variables can be numeric or text, and the comparisons work for either data type. You can bring variables into your trees in several ways:

Note: Your choice of variables is shown in a drop-down list. If Zingtree hasn’t encountered a variable yet in one of the above scenarios, then it won’t appear as an option.

Editing Rules

When editing your Logic Nodes, you can edit your rules as follows:

  • Reorder rules by dragging them up and down with this tool: Reorder Logic test
  • Delete a rule by clicking on this: Delete logic test
  • Select any existing variable from the Variables drop-down.
  • Select an operator (=, ≠, <, >, ≤, ≥ ).
  • Enter a value to perform the test upon.

You must also enter a default node to jump to if no conditions are met.

Zingtree Logic Nodes give your decision trees a bonus option for adding extra intelligence to your processes and troubleshooters. Do you have a cool application for Logic Nodes you’d like to share with us? Reach out and tell us your story!

This article was originally published on May 8, 2017.