Installing and using the Out of Office v2 app

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172 Comments

  • Marc Dufour (Groan)
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    Jessie,

     

    Thank you for the reply. I got frustrated at the seemingly inconsistent actions of the app and removed it. I'm just using individual OOO rules like this that we will turn on and off as needed. It will work for us. If I feel that I need more functionality I'll look at the app again. I'll check out that link though, maybe it will change my mind.

     

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  • Jessie Schutz
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    Hi Marc!

    I'm glad you were able to find something that will work for you. Let us know if you need anything else after you read through that link!

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  • Lester
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    Are there any plans to exclude light agents from the list?  All employees here are light agents so we have a few hundred in the list which makes using the app impossible. 

    I'm really keen to have a better OOF solution than the method we use today. 

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  • Nicole - Community Manager
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    Hey Lester - 

    The OOO app is slated to be shifted from being a Zendesk Labs app to an official one, which is great news, because that means it'll have an official product manager, roadmap, etc. 

    I talked to the PM who will be responsible for this app, and he said that while this exact functionality isn't in the immediate roadmap, it is something he thinks is a good idea and he's putting it in the backlog for the next round of roadmap planning. That means this is likely many months out, but because of your feedback it's now on the to-do list. Thanks for your input! 

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  • Chris
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    I'm just wondering if this app can be configured to only tag 'reopened' tickets that need to be tagged? I would imagine that only OPEN tickets need to consider whether an agent is out of office. If it's solved, it's nobody's problem. Or is that impossible? Currently, when a few people are marked out of office for a given day, all their solved tickets that are not archived (usually a few hundred if not more) are 'updated' via the agent_out_of_office_tag. Which isn't a problem, except we dump some Zendesk events into our data warehouse via API, and this app logic (which maybe we should reconfigure) almost doubles or triples the amount of total ticket updates to be recorded. The average number of events a ticket undergoes is significantly higher with the 'mass tagging' Out of Office app ...

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  • Joe Beaudoin
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    Hey Chris,

    Apologies for the late response!

    Whenever an agent's status switches to out of office, all of their tickets are updated with the tag:

     

    This cannot be reconfigured to only include tickets of a certain status, I'm afraid. The update is system wide for the given user, and that doesn't seem to be adjustable on a ticket level. I can definitely appreciate wanting less event activity on a given ticket, but you won't be able to achieve this through modifying the app's functionality, as it's not possible.

    I wish I had better news on this one. Hopefully that clarifies things, though!

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  • Morane Shemtov
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    Hello, 

    I've tried to use the app but it doesn't seem to be working ! I don't get a notification message when trying to assign a ticket to a unavailable agent...I've followed the instructions of the article though !

    Do you know if something is wrong ?
    Thanks !

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  • Patrick Bosmans
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    Hey Morane,

    I am going to spin up a ticket with you to see what we can do to help with this.

    You should be getting an email from me shortly.

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  • Luke Aleo
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    We have some TASK type tickets that are not time-sensitive. Is it possible to have certain tickets, such as those with PRIORITY=LOW, to assign to agent? 

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  • Jessie Schutz
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    Hi Luke!

    You should be able to set up a trigger to do this.

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  • Eric McNulty
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    Hi there,

    I've been using this app for years and it's great! However, lately our agents are coming in from their weekends, are set as unavailable and still have a whole slew of tickets. It doesn't seem to be everybody, but I can't seem to get it to work properly. 

    It looks like the OOO tag is being added to the agent profile but not to the tickets themselves. I've tried uninstalling the app completely and reinstalling and still no luck.

    Any ideas?

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  • Joe Beaudoin
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    Hi Eric!

    Thanks for your comment.

    When an agent is set to OOO, all of their tickets receive a tag. They can, however, still get ticket assignments: for instance, they can assign a ticket to themselves. They should not, on the other hand, have tickets assigned to them by another agent while they are set to unavailable, as this won't save in the system.

    Additionally, if another agent updates the ticket while the assignee were OOO, that would be allowed. But if the ticket then gets updated back to open from pending or on hold, it will get reassigned to the agent's group without an assignee value.

    However, two other scenarios could occur, depending how you have your settings configured:

    If force unassign is off, the agent could have went unavailable with open tickets still in their queue. If prevent assignment was disabled, then a ticket could be successfully assigned to someone who's unavailable.

    If you believe you have ticket examples that do not follow this, feel free to submit a ticket to support@zendesk.com and an advocate will have a look at your examples.

    I hope this proves helpful!

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  • Eric McNulty
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    Thanks for the suggestions, Joe. Unfortunately, the settings were the first thing I checked and everything has been enabled. This happens all the time with various agents. 

    I've reached out to Zendesk support already and they turned me away saying it was a labs app and they can't support it. So at this point, I'm kind of at a loss. 

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  • Sharon Grey
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    Eric, maybe it's this?

    https://www.zendesk.com/apps/support/out-of-office/?source=app_directory

    • The app will not prevent assigning tickets unless the ticket is updated individually through the Zendesk interface. Triggers, the Mail API, and REST API, and bulk editing will all be able to bypass the assignment restrictions.

    We have a general 'support' email address that goes into Zendesk, and also a personal email address for each of our Agents (that their assigned customers can use).  If an email is received to the personal email address, there is a trigger that automatically assigns that ticket to the relevant Agent.  So, even if the Agent is OOO, those "trigger touched" tickets will be assigned to them.

    We resolve this by creating a "OOO Agent" view, where we can see open tickets assigned to that OOO Agent.  Then we manually reassign those tickets to the general queue so someone else can pick them up.

    It's not great, but that's how we work around that issue. 

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  • John Tieu
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    Hi,

    With the announcement that Zendesk Apps built on Framework V1 are being removed in Oct 2019, will there be an updated version of the app released?

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  • David Stevenson
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    The notification has a list of planned migrations linked:

    https://support.zendesk.com/hc/en-us/articles/360002123147

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  • Brett - Community Manager
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    @David thanks for sharing the link!

    @ John looks like migrating the Out of Office app to v2 is planned :)

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  • Chris
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    FYI. Since this is becoming an official Zendesk App.

     

    For a company more concerned about Big data & integration and "Sunshine" etc -- this Out of Office app has some problems.

    For starters, it more than doubles (for us at least serving 40-50k tickets a month) our ticket event data as hundreds of tickets get tagged OOO every time an agent takes their days off, and then when they return as well.

     

    An individual ticket does not need an "OOO" tag. An AGENT needs an "OOO" tag. It is the agent, not the ticket, that is out of office.

    Unfortunately I see that Assignee Fields cannot be used in Triggers or Automations, so this has probably been the reason for the current setup.

    But if Requester fields can be used in Triggers and Automations, why not Assignees?

    Anyway for now we will have to consider simply having an OOO "Automation" or Trigger with all currently OOO agents within the Trigger body "or" clause.

     

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  • Graeme Carmichael
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    Brett

    If Out of Office is going to be an official supported app, it would be good if that linked to Skills Routing.

    Kristen mentions here that routing directly to agents is being considered. Agent availability would be essential if that is to work efficiently.  If would be best if agent availability was set in one place and worked across the Out of Office app and Routing.

    Has that been considered?

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  • Brett - Community Manager
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    Great question Graeme!

    I'm going to reach out to our team internally here to confirm whether or not this has been considered.

    I'll post back here once I have additional information :)

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  • Brett - Community Manager
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    @Graeme I reached out internally and it doesn't look like linking to Skills Based routing has been considered. I've passed the feedback over to the appropriate team but as you and I have discussed this functionality would be limited to users on the Enterprise account who actually have access to Skills Based Routing.

    If I find out any additional information I'll be sure to post here.

    Cheers!

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  • Ashleigh Hyde
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    Hi All/Ben,

    Thanks for creating the App! Something Zendesk should really consider purchasing/teaming up with you and developing out further :).

    In the docs above it mentions in the following:

    • The app will not prevent assigning tickets unless the ticket is updated individually through the Zendesk interface. Triggers, the Mail API, and REST API, and bulk editing will all be able to bypass the assignment restrictions

    We currently use the Zendesk API for 3rd parties to create 98% of the tickets through to our Zendesk. I was hoping that if I created a trigger using the new "agent out" user field then we could add the tag based on the agent out? field being "checked". Then the normal out of office app triggers could do the unassigning and remove the tags. However, it didn't seem to add the tag when I triggered it based on ticket being updated. This is what my rule looks like:

    Is this possible does anyone know?

     

    Thanks!!

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  • John Tieu
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    Hi,

    Has anyone else experienced issues with the Out of Office app failing to add the tag properly to tickets sitting in Open status when marking themselves unavailable? 

    We noticed this first happening about a month ago and it still persists, we received two error messages indicating:

    1. Timed out while waiting for the ticket bulk update to complete
    2. Unable to look up tickets for JOHN SMITH. This agent may not be an assignable agent.

    Thank you,

    John

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  • Brett - Community Manager
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    Hey John,

    Have you already gone through the process of uninstalling and re-installing the app to see if that fixes the issue?

    Hopefully others can chime in and offer up some advice if they've run into similar issues but I would definitely start there.

    Cheers!

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  • John Tieu
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    Hi Brett,

    Thank you for the prompt response. Yes, I tried re-installing when the issue first surfaced a month ago. I just attempted a fresh re-install and no luck. 

    Hope anyone can help here.

    Thank you,
    John

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  • Ashleigh Hyde
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    Anyone keen to provide me some feedback on this comment? I would be appreciative :).

    https://support.zendesk.com/hc/en-us/articles/204076066/comments/360001564713

     

     

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  • Nicole - Community Manager
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    Hey Ashleigh -

    Apologies for missing your previous comment - thanks for bumping it! For clarification, Ben is actually a Zendesk employee. The Out of Office app is one of the ones we are looking at turning into an official Zendesk App, though we don't have an ETA on when exactly that might happen just yet.

    As far as your rule suggestion goes, I'll run that by a few folks who know both the app and triggers better than I do to see what they think.

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  • Ashleigh Hyde
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    Hi Nicole,

    Thanks so much! That's good to know, definitely would be great to turn it into an official app as its very useful.

    Will wait to hear! Let me know if you need more clarification of our specific scenarios that you could help with.

    Thanks,
    Ashleigh

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  • Brett - Community Manager
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    Hey Ashleigh,

    The issue here is that triggers are designed to look at the requester of the ticket's user fields . In this case, you're attempting to look at the user field of the assignee which is not currently possible with triggers :-/ 

    Since the Agent Out? field is not check in the requesters profile, the tag is not being applied to the ticket which will then prevent the trigger from firing.

    Let me know if the above doesn't make sense.

    Cheers!

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  • Ashleigh Hyde
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    Ah thanks Ben that makes sense! A shame though as can't see the requestor ever being applicable to the out of office app / agent out? field as they're generally a customer. Would be good if we can specify this in the trigger somehow.

    Thanks!

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