Chat is an instant messaging feature of Intranet Connections, which can also be used to send System Alerts to all users.
Chats are a social feature which can be a great way for users to casually connect during their work day.
Note that chat is a one-to-one chat communication, and it's not possible to add additional people to a conversation or to have group chats. Also, users must be on active on the intranet site in order to send or receive chats.
Turn Chats On or Off
Chat functionality can be turned on and off for all users by an intranet Admin, independently of system alerts, as described later in this article. To turn Chat on or off (note that these global settings do not override user Chat options):
- Click on the Admin link, top right.
- Click on the Directory tab.
- Under Social Settings click Live User Chat (see #1 in image at end of this article).
- Click the box for Enable Live Chat.
- Click the box for Enable User Chat; you can also alter some settings for user chat, such as notification sounds and length of history.
- Click Save to finish and retain your changes.
Admins can also change options for users, including audio alerts, frequency of system checks for new messages (i.e. polling interval), and rentention of Chat history. Users can also control some Chat Options; learn more about user Chat options in the My Profile article.
Starting and Sending a Chat
To start a chat with a coworker:
- Navigate to the Employee Directory and search for the employee you'd like to chat with.
- On their Employee Card, you'll see the icons as shown in the screenshot below.
- If a person is available to chat, the chat icon is outlined in black as shown in (1) below. If they aren't available to chat, the chat icon is greyed out as shown in (2) below. The online or offline chat status shows when users mouse over the icon.
- Click on the Chat icon. This will open the small Chat window with the sendee's name at the top, as shown below.
- Type your message.
- Hit Enter to send.
If a user's computer has hibernated or gone idle long term, users will receive an error, as shown below. The user can just click the red X or navigate to another screen and the message will disappear.
The error occurs because the chat module within Intranet Connections heavily relies on the calls back and forth. When that communication breaks we want the user to be aware that they're no longer receiving fresh chat messages.
The Chat feature can also be used by Admins to send System Alerts to all users, which is a great way to get information directly to intranet users in the context of the site. This can either be an add-on to the user chat functionality, or the user chat function can be turned off so this feature is used exclusively for System Alerts.
A sample System Alert message is shown below.
To send a System Alert:
- Ensure that the box for Enable Live Chat is selected (#1 in image below). Note that this doesn't enable users to live chat - you would need to check the box for Enable User Chat as well.
- Enter your text for System Alert as shown in #2 below.
- All online users is selected by default; alternately you can select users or select groups then choose from the available options.
- Click Send Alert (3) and your message will immediately be sent to all users (there is no delayed send option).