Q: What is 24/7 Chat?

03/04/16
Nancy Skipper

Nancy Skipper, ready for your questions!

PATRON
11:12:29
2016/03/02
What is Chat?
LIBRARIAN
11:12:29
2016/03/02
Via an online chat, Cornell students or faculty can get live information from library staff 24 hours a day, seven days a week.
Whether they’re on the sixth floor of the Olin stacks or studying abroad in Asia, library users can get instantaneous information from library staff across campus.
PATRON
11:12:35
2016/03/02
What kinds of questions can I ask?
LIBRARIAN
11:12:42
2016/03/02
Ask us anything! Some people ask how to renew a book. Others are looking for a specific item, such as an article, and want help finding it. Sometimes they’re looking for dissertations. Sometimes they want help searching a specialized database. If a question is too specific for the person on-duty to answer, an expert will follow up with you via email.
PATRON
11:13:02
2016/03/02
Is a librarian really sitting there in pajamas answering questions at 2 a.m.?
LIBRARIAN
11:13:24
2016/03/02
Sort of! Cornell University Library is part of a cooperative called Question Point, and after-hours chat requests are usually answered by library staff across the globe – ranging geographically from the University of Sunderland in England on the east, and Hawaii Pacific University on the West. The coop takes advantage of the time difference – for example, librarians in Hawaii or England can answer questions during what would be the overnight shift here.
But don’t worry – someone from Cornell will follow up with you on every call handled by a librarian from elsewhere to make sure you’re all set.
PATRON
11:13:45
2016/03/02
What’s the point of 24/7 Chat?
LIBRARIAN
11:14:03
2016/03/02
Says Nancy Skipper, Chat coordinator: “It connects to everything we do. It creates another doorway into all of our services and multiple areas of expertise, and that doorway exists everywhere people are online, anywhere in the world.”
And for students, “it’s the convenience, for sure,” says Tom Ottaviano, business and economics librarian at Mann. “They like being able to stay up on the third floor and still get help from a librarian, and they like being able to get assistance from off-campus as well.”
PATRON
11:14:09
2016/03/02
How frequently do people use the Chat service?
LIBRARIAN
11:14:19
2016/03/02
In 2015 Cornell patrons requested more than 2,000 sessions.
PATRON
11:14:36
2016/03/02
Are librarians on Chat friendly?
LIBRARIAN
11:14:52
2016/03/02
You betcha. Our surveys show a strong correlation between a user's satisfaction and the friendliness of the chat encounter. We always make a point to have positive, friendly and helpful interactions.
PATRON
11:15:10
2016/03/02
Are there ever questions you don't know the answers to?
LIBRARIAN
11:15:29
2016/03/02
When we’re doing coop Chat – filling in for other member libraries’ off hours - people will ask questions specific to another university’s library, such as, “On what floor can I find the maps?” And we don’t work in that library, so we don’t know.
In general the questions from Cornell’s clientele tend to be more difficult. More and more, students really know the basics reasonably well – it’s when the complicated stuff comes up that they turn to us.