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Case Study

Gilbert the chatbot handles 7,500+ inquiries out of hours

The University of Glasgow is the Times Higher Education University of the year and has recently risen two places to 14th in the UK and remains 2nd in Scotland. Making sure students are engaged at every step of the admissions process and beyond is a priority for Glasgow.

Gilbert the chatbot handles 7,500+ inquiries out of hours
12,723
Conversations handled with students
7,496
out of office hour conversations
59%
of conversations took place out of hours
26%
of conversations on the weekend

Project Objectives

The question for Glasgow was: how can we quickly and easily manage the simple inquiries from our students, so our admissions team has the capacity to handle more complex student engagement?

That’s where Gecko comes in. Since partnering with Gecko in November 2020, Glasgow has been able to manage 12,723 student inquiries with no additional staff support.

UoG admissions team were presented with two challenges:

  1. Senior management asked the UoG admissions team to look into chatbot and live chat solutions to support Clearing after seeing similar use from competitors and hearing about the technologies at conferences
  2. UoG admission team were being inundated with 120,000 individual inquiries annually which were becoming more challenging to manage with no extra staff resource

Historically Higher Education has been behind the curve of digital innovation uptake and in bigger institutions, like Glasgow, it can be difficult to make a change, with traditional ways of working staying central to decision-making.

Gecko
We got the chatbot to intercept a lot of the easy stuff. We wanted something that could easily reduce the volume of easy calls that we were getting but something that will never take away from our specialist knowledge and things that our team has to do.
Gecko
Keith Hutchison
Enquiry Team Lead
Solution
UoG has a long-standing relationship with Gecko, having successfully used lead-capture technology across the institution. This proven success, plus knowledge of and familiarity with Gecko technology, made the decision to partner for the new Chatbot a no-brainer. Today, due to Gilbert’s success campus-wide, momentum is picking up within other teams across the institution. Gilbert provides admissions a competitive edge; he is the first touch-point for students before UoG’s admissions teams more traditional methods phone number or email address, meaning once the student has their answer, they can move on, satisfied because they have been met where they are with instant information, rather than waiting on phone lines or hours for email responses. 
Gecko
We definitely wanted to get away from the formality of emails but we wanted it to be like you were still talking to a human.
Gecko
Keith Hutchison
Enquiry Team Lead