Announcing the Collaboration Add-on (feat. Side Conversations) Follow

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22 comments

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    Joe Caiati

    Just to confirm, the Light Agent role is being renamed to Collaboration Agent?

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    Toby Sterrett

    Joe – the role will still be Light Agent, it's just the add-on that is being renamed to Collaboration. The add-on enables both the Light Agent role and the new Side Conversations feature.

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    Joe Caiati

    Toby -- Is there a way to have Light Agents enabled, but not use the Side Conversation feature?

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    Toby Sterrett

    Joe – Yup, the Side Conversations feature is an option in the Tickets settings page that is off by default.

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    Abbey Neumann

    Will you be able to use the side conversation with an end user as well? Or just light agents?

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    Sergio Anarte

    When it will be ready to use in live instances?

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    Thomas D'Hoe

    @Toby,

    Is the add-on available for free when you have an old (existing) enterprise account?

     

     

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    Toby Sterrett

    @Abbey – side conversations can be addressed to agents, light agents, or to email addresses that the agent types in

    @Sergio – it is rolling out to accounts that have the paid Light Agents add-on right now, so if your account already has the Light Agents add-on, you'll be migrated to the Collaboration add-on soon and you can take a look at your Ticket settings to see if it's hit your account yet. If you don't have the paid Light Agents add-on, you can purchase it through your account rep.

    @Thomas – it will not be available for free to the legacy Enterprise accounts, but you can definitely talk to your account rep to see what they can work out for you.

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    Abbey Neumann

    Thanks @Toby. So the email addresses typed in can be to an end user, correct? For example, we deal directly with our distributors (Zendesk "end users") and sometimes have to sidebar one of our freight carriers (who are also "end users" in Zendesk) without the customer seeing. So with this new add-on, we could have a case going with our distributor, and then create a side conversation with the carrier, right? 

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    Toby Sterrett

    @Abbey – that's correct and sounds like a really good use case for the feature.

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    Stefan Tock

    Can you use side-conversations in your macros ?
    Or are there any plans currently of enabling side-conversations fields in macros in the future ?

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    Toby Sterrett

    @Stefan – not yet, but it's definitely something we are exploring. The general idea would be to have a macro action that would let you set the subject and body of a new side conversation using placeholders, and when the macro is executed it would open the new side conversation window with those filled out. Then the agent could fill out the recipients and add any additional information to the message before sending it.

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    Niclas Kårlin

    I guess it's the same response for forwarding the side conversations as email, using a Trigger? 
    I couldn't find a way to do that, but maybe there is? I got this far, but could find a placeholder for the email content.

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    Rachel Christie

    Hi Toby. When a ticket is solved and eventually closed and someone replies to your side conversation, will there be an alert that there was a reply?

    Thanks in advance!

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    Toby Sterrett

    @Niclas – this won't work because emails received at the collaboration@ addresses are routed to a different system and not processed in the same way as tickets. What is the outcome you're trying to accomplish here? We may have some other approaches available or in forthcoming updates that could help.

    @Rachel – the in-product notification in the upper right corner should still appear when a side conversation in a closed ticket is replied to but I need to check on that. We're also investigating some other approaches for this scenario. What would be the best outcome for your particular workflow in these situations? And do anticipate many replies to side conversations in tickets that have been solved long enough that they're closed?

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    Rachel Christie

    Hi Toby. Sometimes we have tickets where side conversations could be replied to well into the future by contractors. I would just hate to miss the email if there was no notification after the ticket was closed. I have noticed that if the ticket is solved and the side conversation is replied to it will reopen. Best outcome is a notification that there has been a reply and perhaps the ability to reopen the ticket or create a follow up? Also it would be amazing if the side conversation could remember frequently used email addresses too, rather than typing it all out. First world problems.. I know :) 

    Thanks for your reply!

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    Niclas Kårlin

    @Toby - We're using a shared email inbox for notification on case updates. We forward all case comments there, and currently the side conversations are not forwarded there.

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    Toby Sterrett

    @Rachel – one idea we've had for this situation is to let the incoming email go ahead and create a new ticket if it's in reply to a side conversation that belongs to a closed ticket. The thought being that the reply to the side conversation is probably more of a shortcut for them to start a new conversation rather than to discuss something about a ticket that has long since been solved. I guess the question here is would it be better to just let it create the new ticket to have the conversation with them, or create the follow-up ticket (even though it wouldn't be because of activity from the original requester)? Or, would it be preferable to just continue in the original side conversation in the closed ticket (as long as you got a notification to be aware of it)?

    As for remembering/autocompleting email addresses in side conversations, that's something we're working on :)

    @Niclas – I see. You're correct that we don't currently have placeholders for side conversation information in triggers. We're investigating what it would take to enable this. In the meantime, I'm wondering if you could perhaps add the shared email address as a recipient in the side conversation directly, and when people reply-all a copy will get sent to it?

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    Niclas Kårlin

    One more thing I found:
    The zendesk Search function does not find text in the Side conversation emails.

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    Jonathan March

    @Toby

    >> I would just hate to miss the email if there was no notification after the ticket was closed.

    Exactly. Not common, but you never want to ignore incoming communications.

    > I guess the question here is would it be better to just let it create the new ticket to have the conversation with them, or create the follow-up ticket (even though it wouldn't be because of activity from the original requester)? Or, would it be preferable to just continue in the original side conversation in the closed ticket (as long as you got a notification to be aware of it)?

    I'd prefer the third option (don't create another ticket). It's so hard to predict the purpose, but most likely it would just be a followup comment for the record. If that's not feasible because of constraints on archived tickets, then I'd prefer an internal-only followup ticket to keep the connection without in any way disturbing / confusing the original requester.

    Thanks!

     

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    Jonathan March

    > The zendesk Search function does not find text in the Side conversation emails.

    This is a big weakness. Search is fundamental to re-using experience.

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    Rachel Christie

    @Toby - thanks for your reply. Potentially the side conversation could be replied to with a totally different subject matter so I don't see a problem with the reply to a side conversation in a ticket that is closed creating a new ticket as long as the original ticket is referenced. 

    Thanks for keeping us informed! 

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