Using skills-based routing (Enterprise) Follow



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    Tom Morris

    If we're more and more going to use Views for agents to see what they need to be working on, rather than the home 'Tickets requiring your attention', it would be useful if we could replace 'Tickets requiring your attention' with a (custom) View, that is shown to the Agent in place of the default 'Tickets requiring your attention'.

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    Wouter van Gessel

    I'm missing some explanation in the articles, what will happen if a ticket matches a Skill. The article doesn't say if the ticket is then assigned to an agent, a group of agents, or what business rules can be attached. 

    What if we create a business rule that all French tickets should go to our two French colleagues: How will this show up in their Zendesk views? What happens if both colleagues are on leave, can other agents still see tickets? I'm missing an example of a business rule in the explanation. Hope you can help! :)

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    Kristen Mirenda

    Hi @justin -- a ticket can absolutely have multiple skills assigned to it! That's what makes skills-based routing especially powerful. An agent will be considered a match for a ticket if they have all the skills that ticket requires. So in the example you gave, an agent that only has "Mandarin" and not "Refund" would not be considered a match (in the future we will be looking at partial match logic). 

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    Matt Savage

    Piggybacking on Wouter's comment ^ as it seems we're going in a similar direction.  I also don't understand the specifics of where/how the routing occurs here and how it meshes with existing triggers/automations.  

    I'd also like to see (either manually or via machine learning) some way of estimating capacity in the routing, via some method similar to agile story points.  In the above scenario, if there are 2 French agents, it'd be incredibly helpful if the system could attempt to route a ticket to whichever one is a) available, b) has the most free capacity, and/or c) failover to some other location (i.e. a group) if neither agent can presently handle it.

    Can you provide more info on why skills aren't reevaluated on update like trigger conditions?  The scenario I foresee is: customer fills out a contact form, selecting the wrong product/value --> Skill A is set.  Agent w/ Skill A updates the ticket w/ correct product/value, which would then match Skill B instead (which they may not have).  What's the utility of keeping Skill A set when the ticket has now been identified as needing Skill B?  I understand this may be a limitation set for the early version of this feature to keep it simple but it seems like it'll be problematic in more complex routing scenarios, especially for internal transfers between teams (e.g. Support <--> Billing).

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    Kristen Mirenda

    It's all good @will -- this is part of the learning.

    We conceived of a "skill match" as answering the question, "does the agent have all the skills needed to take this ticket?" -- that's why a ticket with no skills will match everyone.

    If you want to disqualify tickets from skills matching, could you work with the conditions on the view where you put the column? Would you also mind talking a little about the use case for disqualifying tickets to help us understand what you’re trying to do?


    @tom -- That's similar to the direction we're heading. We found that not a lot of customers made use of 'Tickets requiring your attention' however -- how are you using it?


    @paul -- We envision this as a replacement for some (actually, a lot of) triggers. We also envision it as a replacement for some groups that exist solely to segregate the tickets a particular agent can work on. We are working towards direct agent assignment as part of automated routing, but you will always be able to use triggers in concert with routing rules if you so choose.

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    Kristen Mirenda

    Thank you so much for the feedback! We're working on augmenting this documentation with some additional info. In the meantime, hopefully this will help.

    This is the first iteration of this feature, and it doesn't yet cover all the use cases we plan to support over the coming months.

    For now, we retain the "pull" paradigm of agents taking tickets from views. To show agents which tickets match their skills, add a "Skill match" column to the view. If the agent looking at the view has all the skills required by a ticket, that ticket will have a checkmark next to it.

    The next release will offer a filtered experience that will work with Play mode. Therefore, for many customers, this version of Skills-based routing is best suited to the time-consuming task of setting up and testing new routing flows. We've published some best practices to guide you.

    In addition to seeing how tickets are matched to an agent, you can see which skills were applied to a specific ticket, and update them if needed. Only admins can do this right now. This will help you QA and troubleshoot your new routing rules.

    Routing rules run before triggers, and for now on ticket creation only. Manually updating skills on the ticket is the only way to change them. We do not currently re-run routing rules on ticket update to ensure ticket update performance isn't compromised, but that use case (essentially, "re-routing") is one of the things we're working on for a future release.

    Additionally, we're working on a "push" paradigm of routing tickets directly to agents, which would likely entail a way to ensure that they're going to agents who are available and not overloaded. 

    There's some more information about our plans for Routing in the launch announcement. This is just the first step in a long journey!

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    Kristen Mirenda

    Just a note that @Massimo's question has been answered in the comments of the release announcement, where we're currently funneling the discussion.

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    I have a use case that may not have been considered. 

    Can a ticket have multiple skills assigned to it?

    For example lets say that I have the "Mandarin" language skill, and the "Refund" skill. Both are different skill types but may be present on a ticket.

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    Aimee Spanier

    Hi, all. The article has been updated to (hopefully) clarify some key points, and better reflect the current functionality. Leave comments if you have any other questions or clarifications. Thanks!

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    Andrew Checkley

    Same as others above, I have tried playing with it in sandbox and although setup as described no routing occurs ?

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    Massimo DiDio

    if the ticket does not get automatically assigned to agents yet, how do agents know which skills we have set for them unless we specifically tell them? 

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    Andrew Checkley

    Looks good, but needs automatic intelligent routing. i.e. assigning to the appropriate person at point of raise. if multiple matches then assign to the agent with the least amount requests taking into account current state of assigned tickets and SLA 

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    Kristen Mirenda

    There's been such great feedback in the comments sections of a few different articles relating to the current release of Skills-Based Routing. 

    We'd love to have most of that happening in one place, and we think the release announcement makes the most sense.

    So if you'd like to provide input, please do it there! It'll be easier for us to respond, and you'll be able to see and engage with others' ideas as well. 

    Thank you -- we're so grateful for your feedback. It's one of the main reasons we're taking an iterative approach, which gives us the chance to take it into consideration while we're still designing and planning. Keep it coming! (Just, over there.) 

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    Kristen Mirenda (Edited )

    Hi @andrew and @will -- I could not agree more! Both direct routing (assigning) to agents and partial skill match are part of the vision for the future. We're building this out one layer at a time. We know this version isn't optimal for all use cases, but we wanted to release it as soon as we had an end-to-end solution, rather than hold back completely until the feature is "done" (there's no such thing anyway). This approach allows us to provide something useful and lets us gather real usage data to inform our next iteration.

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    Paul Lawrence

    Is the new Routing feature an easier interface to design triggers or is it a replacement for triggers?

    In my zendesk account an agent can be in multiple content specific groups. I have triggers setup to route tickets to the correct content group by string searches so agents can solve tickets based curent priority of their content.

    It would be nice if routing gave a choice to assign to an agent or a group under skills.

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    Will Ginsberg

    @kristen mirenda


    I 100% get that there are a myriad of use cases but I don't understand how this product works properly.

    If a ticket doesn't have a skill it appears as skill matched. This means that in order to even think about "disqualifying" tickets from skill matching you need to assign the ticket a skill. 

    So, seriously, this sounds snarky but it's not intended that is this product supposed to work? What's a use case where this works as intended? Having a specific view for a skill? What's the point of skills then? I'm probably totally missing the mark but trying to figure out an example of where skill matching works. 

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    Will Ginsberg (Edited )

    @kristen mirenda -- there needs to be an ability to show the skill match column as checked if the agent has ANY of the skills on the ticket (not ALL) of the skills. It's also really frustrating that if a given ticket doesn't have any skills applied that the ticket is shown as checked in the skill match column. 

    As of right now I don't see a clear way to:

    a) Assign a specific skill to an agent for a specific ticket topic

    b) Without assigning skills to all tickets (so that all tickets don't appear as checked, because ticket MUST have a skill in order to appear unchecked in "Skill match" otherwise they're shown as checked)

    Because of (b) I need to assign a skill to all tickets we receive that has no agents assigned, BUT because agents must have ALL skills assigned and I can't assign agents to the "mass skill" that I applied that means that the "Skill match" column never appears checked. 

    Just to simplify in case it helps...

    Let's assume you have two skills. Skill one applies to every ticket received (so that they don't all appear as skill matched because they lack a skill), skill two applies to tickets with specific criteria. Skill one has no agents assigned and skill two has one agent assigned. 

    Because of the fact that agents must have ALL of the skills and the agent assigned skill two but isn't assigned skill one, they never see skill match. 

    Super frustrating! If every ticket without a skill wasn't checked as skill matched you'd solve a lot of headache and this product would work. 

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