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District 49 Uses LiveChat to Build a Strong Relationship with Its Community

Because of LiveChat, parents are finding it easier to communicate with the District 49 team members who can better respond to parents’ information needs.

District 49 using LiveChat - case study cover

The challenge

Bringing LiveChat on board

District 49’s website is a knowledge base where parents can learn about school options for their children, read the latest school news, and learn about upcoming events. Parents look for ways to contact their school or district whenever they need information. To find it, they visit a school’s website, make a phone call, write an email, send a tweet or post a message on the district’s Facebook page. 

In the past, they sometimes couldn’t locate the information as quickly as the district preferred. Parents would get lost on the website, get stuck when calling, and wait too long for an answer. They were frustrated.

At first, the communication team tried to use LiveChat internally to better assist school faculty with improving their website. During the 14-day trial, they got the idea to use chat as an external communication channel focused on the parents’ needs.

The solution

Guiding visitors through the website

After the district’s communication team installed LiveChat on their website, parents started getting quick answers and feeling taken care of. Dustin Senger, Digital Communications Specialist, said:

“LiveChat on our website ensures our patrons that we’re present and listening. They know they have our attention and communicate with more clarity and accuracy. Our conversations are much better than email when establishing and maintaining positive relationships with our patrons.”

Dustin Senger, District 49

District 49’s chat is available on its main website and most websites of the 22 schools the district runs. Parents get in touch with the communication team whenever they have a question. They can chat during office hours and leave messages using a contact form after hours. This means that parents who can’t use the chat at work can still get in touch with the district when they return home

Fifteen agents use LiveChat at District 49 in total

Each shows up in the chat window with a photo, full name, and job title. The visitors who start chats can see a real person on the other side, making the conversation more personal. The agents greet visitors much like they would if they entered one of the district’s buildings.

While chatting, agents can express kindness and care just as they would in real-life conversations, which makes visitors feel welcomed and understood. They don’t just chat. They build relationships.

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Usually, one agent from the communications team is available for chat, and they handle up to 20 conversations daily. Depending on the case, the discussion can get transferred to another department, like enrollment, human resources, transportation, or cultural capacity.

To offer immediate help to visitors who navigate the website or look for specific information, Senger set up greetings — personalized messages that automatically appear in a chat window after a visitor takes a particular action.

“LiveChat helps us discover people's concerns with our website, large and small, so we can keep our parents from experiencing frustration.”

Dustin Senger, District 49

The result

Cutting-edge communication

LiveChat helps the parents of District 49 save time and is becoming an alternative to phone and email. Families don’t have to worry about finding a phone number or addressing and writing an email — they can visit D49.org and ask for immediate assistance when necessary.

Because of LiveChat, parents are finding it easier to communicate with the District 49 team members who can better respond to parents’ information needs. As a result, parents are experiencing improved customer service. They send fewer angry messages and have more effective and meaningful dialogues.

“The communication between our district and patrons is tremendously better. One parent who works at a global IT company recently told me that she thinks our communication effort is more cutting edge than that of her employer.”

Dustin Senger, District 49

In the future, District 49 is looking to expand on its use of LiveChat so that more people from the organization can assist parents with their knowledge. What’s more, the front desk staff is currently testing LiveChat at one of the schools.

District 49 believes the ongoing dialogue with parents will help them build a better relationship with their community.

Photo of Kuba Rogalski

Kuba Rogalski


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