Best practices for altering your custom ticket fields Follow



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    Dennis Clarke

    The ability to archive or hide a field option would be great.  We have changing products, for example, and rather than the delete or alter options we would like to see the ability to hide an old product name (looking at you "Flash SDK") from the drop-down list on new tickets, but have it remain in the system and in the values of older/closed tickets.

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    Paolina Beltran

    How can I delete the Field value ' - ' that is added in the drop down field as one of the values? I want the Field Values to only include 'yes' and 'no'. Thank you! 

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    Jessie - Community Manager

    Hi Paolina!

    To the best of my knowledge it's not possible to remove that placeholder, since that's what the field sits on before a user makes a selection. Otherwise it would default to one of your values and could result in incorrect reporting, or business rules firing incorrectly.

    Are you having a problem where people aren't making a selection in one of your fields?

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    Itamar Moshayov

    Hi, I've created a dropdown field, with a few options to select. Now I know there is an option to create a dependent dropdown field for each option, but for some reason I can't find it.

    Can you please point me to the right location? the goal is to select an option from the dropdown custom field i created, and it will open another dropdown option. 


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    Jessie - Community Manager

    Hi Itamar! Welcome to the Community!

    You have two options here. You can use the existing dropdown field functionality and organize them so they have nested options: Organizing drop-down list options

    Or you can use our Conditional Fields App, which will do exactly what you're describing. Bear in mind that this app is a paid add-on for the Professional plan, but is included on Enterprise.

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    Sonia Radaelli (Edited )


    I created a drop-down field called "Category"

    When a category is assigned to the ticket automatically a tag is added; when category change (by trigger or macro or manually) the old category tag is cancelled and replaced with the new one.

    i would like to know if possible to add the new tag without deleting the old one to have the history of the category tags in the ticket.

    I would like to use also those tags to create a report.

    Thanks and regards


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    Jessie - Community Manager

    Hi Sonia!

    When you change a selection in a drop down field, Zendesk automatically changes the corresponding tag to match. You could probably set up a series of triggers to re-add the previous tag, but it would likely be pretty labor intensive to create the triggers for each option combination.

    Can you tell me more about why the category would be changed, and why you want to report on the old/incorrect category value in a ticket that has had that field changed?

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    Sonia Radaelli

    Hi jessie

    We create some triggers that categorize the ticket received from customer automatically then the ticket category can change during his life due to many factors customer send a ticket but inside it they ask us more than one info).

    For example the customer send a ticket containing availability, price of a new product and with the same ticket ask us the delivery of one of their order. Therefore the ticket will be categorized as price request and then will be assigned to the agent in charge of availabilty and tan to another agent to reply about the delivery of their order

    In this case the ticket will pass from price request category to availability category to order category.

    We would like to report on all the categories applied to a ticket to be able to track how many request we managed on each category

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    Patrick Kelly

    Hi Rebecca! Thank you for putting together such a great article. 

    We are about to completely revamp our "Category" and "Reason" ticket fields. We would still like to pull reports for historical data after we make these changes. 

    Could you please provide best practices on how we should make these changes?

    Thank you!

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    Patrick Kelly

    Hi Jessie-could you help me out with this request? Thank you!

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    Jessie - Community Manager

    Hey Patrick!

    Are these both custom fields? If so, I think you could get away with renaming the old fields (maybe something like "Category - Old") and removing them from your ticket forms. Then you can replace them with brand-new "Category" and "Reason" fields with the new format.

    I've also asked our Community Moderators to weigh in on this for you; they should have some good information on potential pitfalls to watch for.


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    Patrick Kelly

    Thank you so much Jessie!

    These are custom fields. Based on your advice (and some other advice we received directly from Zendesk support :) ), we are going to:

    1. Deactivate these two fields.

    2. Create two brand new Ticket Fields. 

    Does this sound like a good set of next steps? Will this ensure we can pull historical data on older fields. 
    Thank you again!

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    Teresa Rosado-Sanna

    Hi Sonia,

    From what you are describing I believe it would be better to use a multi-select field rather than a dropdown field. That way your customer or agent can select multiple fields regarding the specific request. Also each of your tickets may have more then one of the category tag and you can then report on those tags and find out exactly how many requests came in for each category.

    You can find out more information on Multi-selct fields and how to report on them in this article: New ticket field type: Multi-select

    Hope this helps :)

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    Justin Smith

    Hey Patrick!

    Yeah if you're wanting to keep historical data on those fields for use in reporting, you will for sure want to deactivate them rather than deleting anything.  It sounds like you've got yourself on the right path now, but feel free to reach out if there is anything further we can help with!

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    Heather R (Edited )

    I vote for renaming your current fields and yes deactivate them.
    In your new ticket fields, i suggest paying extra special attention to the tags associated with the selections. They have to be different than the old tags on the old fields.

    Also for any tickets in flight you want to update them to the new fields after new fields are in and before full deactivation. This way you can easily create a couple views and use multi-ticket update.

    To remember the date you switched over, consider renaming the old fields oldthru06182018_Category or something

    Great job thinking through this!

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    Cole, David

    Why when I set a drop down as mandatory and with a default value, is there still the option for the user to select '-' ?

    How can I remove this?



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    Gretchen Ladd

    Hi Dave, thanks for your post! The "-" is the system null value, and there is no native way to prevent this option from displaying in the drop-down field. That said, as long as you have the  "Required to submit a request" feature enabled, the end user will still need to select a value besides "-" before they are able to submit the request. 

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    Shiri Ronen-Attia


    From what I understood from this article if I delete a value from a drop down list all tickets that have this now deleted values will be empty (show -) ? Is this the case?

    I have been testing this in our Sandbox and now surprised to still see the deleted value in the closed tickets. Will it disappear once the tickets are refreshed?

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    George Lafoon

    I have the same question as Shiri Ronen-Attla.

    We have a category field on our tickets and we want to clean up this drop down as we have a lot of duplicate values.  As an example, we have VPN and Corp - VPN.   The Corp - VPN came when my company bought another company and the second company was allowed to import their ticket categories.  The person doing the import ignored anything that could be considered a duplicate.

    We now want to be able to remove the Corp - VPN value but it seems this is not possible as it skews reporting on this category.

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    Amanda Yu

    Hi George,

    Thanks for reaching out to us! As to not skew your reporting, you may consider renaming your "Corp - VPN" field to something like "DO NOT USE - Corp - VPN" as to let your agents know you are trying to retire the field. In addition, should you delete the field altogether, the tag associated will still remain active and while being able to report on it, it will show an empty value.

    Hope this helps!

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    Petri Tuura

    Is there a way to allow agents to manage drop-down field values (add values to drop-down field)? We are expanding the use of Zendesk and new values are needed very frequently. Currently adding values needs to go through admins, which is inflexible.

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