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Try out the new Cisco Spark Team Announcements Gadget!

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Cisco Employee

We are always on the lookout for innovative features to add to Finesse and one area that has been highly intriguing over time is marquee messaging and agent-to-agent chat. We have known about the importance of this functionality long before we even released Finesse, but we were never able to find a good technology to be the basis for the implementation.  We knew that customers were going to want an API create messages, want it to work across Finesse instances, and have the messages be persistent.  We didn’t want to build something from scratch because that would be extremely time-consuming when off-the-shelf functionality would eventually exist to give us what we needed.  Despite strong opinions that we needed this feature in Finesse, we waited because we didn’t like any of the technical options available at the time.

As soon as Cisco Spark was released, we knew this would be the answer to our technical challenges.  Spark is perfect for Contact Center team collaboration.  Spark has a robust API enabling us to deliver the most optimal UX in Finesse.  Spark has a persistent message store and allows for easy collaboration inside and outside of the contact center. Most importantly, Spark is organized around rooms (instead of people) which dovetails nicely with contact centers (anonymous users organized around skill groups or attributes).

We are proud to announce our first modest offer in this space, the “Cisco Spark Team Announcements Gadget”.  The UI is elegant, simple, and powerful.  We have built a gadget that allows a group of agents to send and receive announcements in a single Spark Room.  Anyone who is a member of the room can post messages to the room.   Members can include agents who access the room via Cisco Finesse or other enterprise users (or bots!) who use the Spark Mobile App or other Spark clients.

Some detailed points to understand:

  • The gadget is designed to work with Finesse 10.6, 11.0, and 11.5
  • The gadget is free and will work with the Cisco Spark Free plan. See the Cisco Spark pricing plans for more details.
  • Each instance of the gadget can host a single Spark room but an agent can have multiple instances of the gadget in their Finesse layout if they need access to different rooms
  • Support will be provided out of DevNet on a best effort basis
  • Feel free to download the code and modify as you see fit

Please use the comments section below to tell us what you think.  Should we provide more gadgets that utilize Cisco Spark? Should we formally productize this gadget and include in our next Cisco Finesse release along with full TAC support?  As always, your feedback is important to us so tell us what you think!

Click to download here.

Sincerely,

Ted Phipps

CCE Product Line Manager

30 Comments
Contributor

Is there any way to make this work with a 10.6 deployment or is there a technical limitation with doing so?

Cisco Employee

As a reward for being the first person to comment on this blog, we have added Finesse 10.6 support (but a different set of files). Please download the 10.6 sample gadget from the same location: finesse-sample-code/SparkTeamAnnouncementsSampleGadget at master · CiscoDevNet/finesse-sample-code · GitHub

Contributor

Thanks!  Got it working, cool stuff.

Cisco Employee

Great to hear it working...please tell us your experience over time....

Cisco Employee

All,

Please tell us what you think about this gadget. Good idea, bad idea?  Should we formally productize it?

Ted

Beginner

Great and long awaited news. I haven't tested it yet though. Will do it in a couple of days. Can you please explain this to me:

"

  • The gadget is free but customers will need to buy Spark Message to actually use the functionality

"

What is spark message? Are you referring to paid Cisco spark App?

Cisco Employee

Yes, the Cisco Spark App.

Does that work? 

Beginner

Thanks for responding. It is mentioned that "customers will need to buy Spark". I can see that Cisco spark has a free version as well.

https://www.ciscospark.com/pricing/new-offer.html

Will the gadget work with the free version or is it mandatory to buy the paid version?

Cisco Employee

Sorry for the misinformation. We looked into the pricing of Spark again (at the same link you provided) and confirmed that the gadget will work with the free version. I will update the blog to reflect this information.

Beginner

Thanks Denise.

btw what Am I getting in reward for being the first person to identify a mistake in the document? (reference: your first comment)

Cisco Employee

Your reward for identifying a mistake in the documentation is the fact that now you get to download AND use the gadget for FREE!

Cisco Employee

This is great stuff, will help lot of partners and customers out there. Kudos to Tedd and his team and a big thanks to Denise who is always so active in resolving the issues related to Finesse on Devnet.

Regards

Deepak

Beginner

Is there also a way to use Cisco Jabber for communication between Agent -> Supervisior?

Beginner

Yes, you can use Cisco Jabber for this. Or you can also use Jabber desktop APIs to create your own chat client.

https://developer.cisco.com/site/jabber/overview.gsp

Cisco Employee

Has anyone gotten this gadget up and running?  Any feedback?  Anybody using it in production?

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