Oracle RightNow CX Feature Focus: Chat Availability Controls

Welcome to the third installment of the 2012 RightNow CX feature focus. In the last installment we discussed the updates to Cloud Monitor in the February 2012 release. If you missed the review you can find it here:

Today let’s talk about a major change to Chat from the May 2012 release. I have worked on several projects implementing Chat and at one point I worked very closely with some folks at Oracle/RightNow to do a proof of concept app (very cool) for mobile devices that was demoed at the last RightNow summit at the Broadmoor in Colorado. But I digress, back to a very cool piece of PHP code: the ConditionalChatLink widget that will truly help customers on their quest “To Rid the World of Bad Experiences”.



Chat Availability Controls

From the release notes:

The new ConditionalChatLink widget for the customer portal lets customers know whether chat sessions are currently available, if agents are available, and what the expected wait time is. When customers click the link, the Live Help page opens. By default, the widget checks for agent availability every five seconds for the first ten minutes, then every minute thereafter. In the reference implementation, the widget appears in the sidebar, but you can place it on any customer portal page. A syndicated ConditionalChatLink widget is also available to let you add a chat link to any external page.

How does this change impact the customer?

The ConditionalChatLink widget provides visibility to the customer and prevents the frustration that comes from thinking chat is available and clicking only to find out that their efforts were in vain. Providing  the customer with an almost real time status on the availability of Chat Agents goes a long way in solidifying a company’s status as one focused on Customer Experience. It is these types of simple changes that pave the way for the future of customer experience.


With this widget you can now also extend the ability of the syndicated chat widget and have the status update on external pages as well as those hosted on the Customer Portal.

The following configuration options are available for the ConditionalChatLink widget. You can read more about what each feature does and how to configure the widget in the May 2012 documentation.


  • Detect incident ID automatically
  • Open a different chat launch page
  • Hide the link when agents are unavailable
  • Ignore chat session pre-routing information
  • Initiate the link by event
  • Configure additional attributes

Oracle RightNow Chat Cloud Service is both a powerful and effective live communication channel that is continuing to grow dramatically alongside the newer less traditional social channels like Facebook and Twitter. The Oracle team published a great best practices guide that I have used many times when implementing chat for clients. It was written between the February and May 2012 releases but much of it is still quite relevant. It is a fairly quick read of about 12 pages and I would strongly suggest it for anyone looking to build a business case to implement or to improve a current implementation.

 If you are interested in learning more or have questions about  the Chat widget feel free to reach out to me at

eVerge Group is an Oracle Platinum Partner with extensive experience. For more information about Oracle RightNow CX and our other business solutions, contact us through our website:

About the author: Rhianna Albert (Just Rhianna) has an extensive background in customer support systems and processes, is an active member of the CX community and has been implementing and integrating RightNow solutions for over five years.


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