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How are "non-institutions" defined in the Ocelot context?

In the Ocelot context, "non-institutions" are defined as any organization that is not a college or university. Typical examples are offices that serve colleges and universities, such as state agencies, district and system offices, associations, etc.

Since Ocelot products were built primarily with colleges and universities in mind, non-institutions will need to consider a handful of non-standard approaches during implementation.

What do non-institutions need to consider when implementing Ocelot products?

Since Ocelot set-up forms and product testing/customizing processes are geared towards the standard college and university structure, the following guidelines should be considered when non-institutions are onboarding and implementing Ocelot products.

Set-up Forms

New Ocelot Chatbot customers will receive 2 set-up forms to get the implementation started:

  1. General - Completed once per institution to set up the chatbot's branding, personality and general profile points.
  2. Office - Completed once per office/department (i.e. Admissions, Financial Aid, etc.) to set up the chatbot's office-based functionality.

Colleges and universities complete the Office form once per office, which sets up both the appropriate content library and contact information for each applicable office. Since the majority of non-institutions have only one primary office utilizing the bot, they only need to complete the Office set-up form one time

  • When the form requests the applicable office, select "Non-institution." 

  • When processing, our Support team will then work with the Client Success Manager (CSM) to ensure accurate set-up.
  • Ocelot will then tie all of the applicable content libraries to that one office so that the same contact information flows throughout all of the knowledge base content.

Testing and Customizing the Chatbot's Knowledge Base


As noted in the Chatbot: Getting Started guide, the first implementation step is to Complete the Variables. 

The Chatbot Variables article comprehensively reviews the Variables process, which are office-based terms and URLs that need to be customized only once and then flow throughout the responses of the entire general library. Since non-institutions typically don't have their own terms, policies, and URLs in a structure that matches most colleges and universities, additional customization is often needed to ensure that the applicable content is properly set-up: 

  1. Review the variables, which are active for your applicable content libraries.
  2. Select "Edit" and complete every required variable that you are able to (non-required variables are value-added and not utilized in the general library).
  3. Every required variable that you do not complete will display as a blank in the responses of the applicable questions that students ask the bot. It is therefore recommended that you either override the responses that contain those blank variables, or remove the general library question altogether. In order to do so:
    1. Copy the applicable variable's code.
    2. Search the General Library for responses that contain that variable.
    3. If you would prefer for users who ask this question to contact you directly instead of receiving a response, simply remove each question entirely.
    4. If you want the bot to give a correct response, follow the remaining steps:
      1. Select "Edit" on each result.
      2. Either replace the variable with your desired value or replace the entire response to indicate that the user will need to contact their school of choice for additional information.

Contact-Based Questions

Some general library questions utilize office-clarifying variables that offer clarifying slots for each office that has been set-up.

As a result of the presence of these office-based variables in the responses, the chatbot will ask which office the user is looking for when these questions are asked before providing a response. 

Assuming you indeed only have one office set up as a contact option (per the Set-up Forms section above), it will be a better user experience to remove these variables and customize those responses with what works best for your office: 

  1. As described in this Office Contact Variables article, search the General Library for the common variable prefix, "!{office}" to display the handful of questions that contain these variables in their responses.
  2. Customize each response with your desired contact workflow response. 
    1. You can either replace the office-based variable with your contact information ...
    2. ... or replace the entire response with your desired contact workflow.

Look & Feel and Behavior

You can control the look and feel of the embedded chatbot button, as well as various chatbot behaviors in the Look & Feel and Behavior sections. 

Since there likely won't be additional offices set-up, you do not need to worry about adjusting anything on the "Office" tab, as the "Default/No Office" tab will suffice for your bot's entire look, feel, and behavior.


  • If you encounter any issues or questions along the way, please contact your Client Success Manager for guidance. 
  • If you discover that you simply need a change adjusted to the way your chatbot was originally set-up, you can also open a ticket so that our Support team can quickly make the desired adjustment.