Contacting someone in a school or district shouldn’t be a nightmare. However, for many parents and community members, it is. Here are three scenarios that are familiar to anyone who has tried to connect with a school district—and ways to take the chaos out of customer service.
Prepare to be up all night searching for contact information! The “hide-and-seek” district buries its contact information deep in its website. Maybe the district believes stakeholders should go to a school or the district office. Maybe they think parents already have the contact information of the people they need to talk to. Whatever the reason, in this district, there’s no Contact Us link in plain sight on the homepage. And if email addresses are to be found, it’s not apparent where they’re hiding, leaving stakeholders without a lot of options.
How many clicks should it take to find the right contact information? The “maze” school district sends you into its labyrinth—otherwise known as the employee directory. Sure, there’s a Contact Us link, but then the user is taken to a spreadsheet of employee names, departments, titles, phone numbers, and email addresses. No matter their needs, all stakeholders are asked to navigate the entire employee directory to find the right person.
3. The Blanket
It’s hard to know if a generic email address is actually attached to someone. The “blanket” school district has plenty of links to staff contact information, but they’re for catch-all email addresses like info@ or feedback@. Is anyone actually answering emails that are sent to these blanket addresses? Is that person qualified to answer all the inquiries that might come in? Will a response take longer to get than the reincarnation of Ramesses? Stakeholders have no way of knowing who or what is on the other end of this email address.
Stop the Chaos! By strategically integrating Let’s Talk! into their websites, school districts can make it easy for parents and community members to find the department they need or choose a topic about which they need to ask a question or provide feedback. In just four steps, Let’s Talk! can help make a school district approachable:
- Embed a tab. The Let’s Talk! tab is easy to implement and gives stakeholders easy access throughout a district website. The tab can sit on the side or the bottom of a webpage and pops out when clicked.
- Add interest areas to the landing page. Stakeholders are always talking about their school districts. It’s easy to update the Let’s Talk! landing page to include interest areas for topics that are already spurring community conversations.
- Link from Contact Us. The Contact Us link, button, or tab on a district website can be connected directly to the Let’s Talk! landing page. Stakeholders can then use the landing page to contact the person or department they need.
- Embed links throughout the website. Districts can download the URL for any interest area. By posting these hyperlinks on pages throughout their websites, they can send users to a specific Let’s Talk! form instead of the main landing page.
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