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Write effective messages for your virtual agent

The virtual agent is now available for all Jira Service Management customers on Premium and Enterprise plans. Read more about plans and pricing.

When the virtual agent recognizes an intent in a customer’s message, it asks the customer to confirm it’s correct before starting that intent’s conversation flow. Read more about intents.

A flow behaves a lot like a normal conversation between two people: The virtual agent says something, waits for the customer to respond, then replies accordingly. A well-designed flow anticipates the things your customers might say and makes sure they get the help they need.

When creating a conversation flow, you’ll need to write most of the virtual agent’s messages yourself. Well-written messages can make a big difference in how your customers feel about their experience using the virtual agent.

Once you’ve saved your conversation flow, we recommend testing it in your test channel before activating it for your customers. Find out how to test your virtual agent.

Keep messages short

Try and keep messages as short as possible without leaving out essential information. Your customers might be in a hurry, so adding too many pleasantries or unnecessary details could add frustration.

Think about what your customers really need to know and take out anything that isn’t absolutely necessary to get them the help they need.

Example

Imagine you’re building a conversation flow, and you’re writing a message to indicate that the virtual agent is going to create an issue for one of your agents to work on.

Instead of: “Thanks for providing me with that information! I’ve raised a request for you in Jira Service Management, and one of our wonderful, hardworking agents will help you with that as soon as they possibly can. I hope you have a great day!”

Try: “Thanks! I’ve raised a request for you. One of our agents will help you with the request as soon as they can.”

Be considerate, friendly, and neutral

While it’s tempting to have fun with the virtual agent, your customers may be coming to your channel for help with something urgent, sensitive, or potentially distressing. They also might be angry or frustrated if something isn’t working. A virtual agent that talks to them as if everything is perfect might make their mood or situation worse.

Imagine all possible scenarios when writing your messages and think about how you might feel reading the message if you were having a difficult day. When in doubt, keep your tone friendly but neutral.

Example

Imagine you’re building a conversation flow for an intent about paid leave policies. While it’s fun to assume people are going on vacation, it’s also highly possible you may have a customer who wants to know about carer’s leave, or even bereavement leave.

Instead of: “Well hello there, friend! I hope you’re having a fantastic day! It sounds like you want information about the different kinds of paid leave available. Check out the information on this page, and have fun on your time off! [link]”

Try: “Hi there! It sounds like you’re looking for information about paid leave. You can read all about our leave policies here: [link].”

Offer clear, helpful choices

When adding an offer choices step, think about all the possible options customers might need and make them as clear as possible. Read about the different step types.

In many cases, it’s helpful to also include a choice that says something else (followed by more clarifying questions), or even raise a request (immediately followed by the escalate standard flow). These two additional choices give your customers a way to indicate they need something that isn’t covered in the choices you’ve offered or that they want to bypass the virtual agent and get help from one of your agents instead.

Example

Imagine you’re building a conversation flow for an intent about resetting passwords for different software applications, and the first step is an offer choices step that is designed to figure out which application your customer needs help with.

Instead of: “It sounds like you need help resetting your password. Which application do you need to reset your password for?” and only offering the two most popular applications as choices

Try: “It sounds like you need help resetting your password. Which application do you need to reset your password for?” and offer the most popular software applications as choices, plus “Something else” and “Raise a request” choices

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