Smith.ai Virtual Receptionists provide qualification and intake answering services for growing businesses and help to build better relationships with existing clients, 24/7.

We were concerned with call handling errors that were occurring when a business provided instructions that were quite long. Instructions that often made our receptionists jump around to different sections, forcing them to process, quickly, large blocks of information rather being able to scan.

The goals were two-fold: 1) build something to that would bring confidence and clarity to our receptionists so that they could seamlessly follow instructions and 2) by accomplishing #1 we would instill confidence with our customers that the services we provide fulfilled their needs.

The implementation of this feature was fundamentally going to be a test. It would be rolled out to be used with only a few businesses. It would also include a way to disable the feature and revert back to the current call handling instructions if there were issues. With that in mind, we all agreed I would provide final designs using wireframe-style so I could iterate quickly, focusing on content and interaction, and then pass it on to engineering.

Role & Approach

Through close collaboration with founding leadership, using user research and feedback within our receptionist & chat teams, and working directly with the engineering lead, I helped to design a more effective solution for call handling and intake for long and detailed business instructions.

The solution I came up with was ‘Playbook Form’. It’s a combination of tools used in form building combined with our internal Playbook building. Playbooks are the groups of steps created for our chat clients to help handle web visitors. Moving forward with this proposed solution occurred after user testing. With the help of one of the receptionist team managers, I set up user testing with a few  our receptionists. The feedback was overwhelmingly positive. All felt strongly that this new way to handle calls was going to be a ‘game changer’.

There were two facets I needed to design for: the updated UI for the instructions that the receptionist would use during a call and the tool the support team would need to build the instructions.

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