What happens when the operating hours end and I still have an active chat?

Return to top
Have more questions? Submit a request


  • Mateusz S

    All waiting chats on the queue will remain until either the visitor leaves the chat or the chat is manually served by an agent.

    Hi, is it actually possible to send them automated message and close the chats waiting in the line with a trigger after operating hours end?
    We don't pick new chats after business hours and some customers can be very persistent losing even 2h of their time waiting in the queue.

  • Ben Van Iten
    Zendesk Community Team

    Hi Mateusz S,

    It is not possible to have a trigger or automated process close these at this time. Our best practices would be to make it very clear to your customers that chats after a certain time period very likely will not be, or definitely will not be served. You could do this on the web page.

    There are possibly some custom widget options available that you could display such information. If you would like to pursue the latter option, could you tell me if you use the integrated chat widget with our support platform or a standalone chat widget?

    Thank you!

  • Mateusz S

    Hi Ben Van Iten. We use chat widget integrated with Zednesk Support platform. Can you please advise what options we can use to make it clear to the customers that operations hours have ended?

  • Ben Van Iten
    Zendesk Community Team


    There are a few routes here. It is possible to write a script that makes sure all pending and current chats are no longer active when no one on the account is online: Why can my customers still chat in after all agents have gone offline?

    This is a custom and unsupported process, but we do have documentation about it. In that same vein, you can do some advanced customization of the web widget to display that information. Perhaps you could customize the widget text to display it.

    I wish that there was a quick and easy way within the interface to do so, but there would be custom work involved in this case.

    I hope this is helpful!

  • Lo Yost

    Hello! We had an incident where operating hours ended and then the customer's widget turned into the offline message form. 

    Is this a normal behavior? Some customers were still engaged in agent conversations but others were routed to the offline form in the middle of their active conversation. 

  • Katie Dougherty
    Zendesk Community Team

    Hi Lo Yost

    The ongoing chat between a customer and an available agent should not be disconnected once the end of operating hours kicks in. The agent should be able to deal with the customer after the set schedule.

    If you are still experiencing this issue, please reach out to our Support Team or let me know and I'd be happy to create a ticket for you! 

    By default, when operating hours are set, agents cannot receive new messages from end-users outside of the scheduled work hours. If you have the offline form enabled, the form will instead be presented to customers. 

    For more information, see the article, Creating a schedule with operating hours, and also the first updated comment on the article

    The comment mentions "the chat offline form will only automatically pop up (replacing "the waiting to be served") for those customers that have initiated a chat request within operating hours but were still waiting to be served by agents after operating hours have ended, if all agent either have their status to Invisible or have logged out of Zendesk Chat. Note that having your agents go invisible won't prevent them from completing any ongoing chats."


Please sign in to leave a comment.

Powered by Zendesk