Zendesk Explore is a reporting tool that’s designed to help you analyze, understand, and share your business information. Explore provides powerful, built-in reports that help you to view and analyze key information about your customers, and your support resources. When you need reports that are tailored to your unique needs, you can use the tools in Explore Professional to build your own reports.
Once your report is ready, Explore helps you to share and collaborate on it with others. Reports can be shared on a one-time, or recurring basis to anyone in your organization.
In this series of getting started articles, you'll learn the basics you need to quickly get up and running with Explore. If you are new to Explore, we recommend you read through these articles. For more resources, see Next steps at the end of this article. If you're unsure about any of the terms used in this article, you can look them up in the Zendesk Explore glossary.
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Understanding Explore versions
Explore comes in two versions:
- Explore Lite: Gives you a selection of pre-built dashboards that you can use to analyze and understand Zendesk products.
- Explore Professional: Includes the pre-built dashboards and tools to help you design, customize, and share your own reports.
For a complete list of the differences between Explore Lite and Explore Professional, see Comparing Explore with Insights.
Before you can use Explore, you must activate it.
To activate Explore, you must be using Zendesk Support Professional, or Enterprise, have Administrator rights to your Support instance, and use a supported web browser.
When you first start Explore, it prepares your Zendesk data for reporting. Depending on the amount of information and tickets you have, this could take from a few minutes to a few hours. You can select an option to have Explore inform you when it's ready for use. For more information, see Activating Zendesk Explore.
Learning Explore features
This section introduces you to some of the main concepts you'll need to learn to get the best from Explore. To use most of the features and capabilities in this section, you'll need Explore Professional. For a complete list of the differences between Explore Lite and Explore Professional, see Comparing Explore with Insights.
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Users and permissions
To help ensure the security of your business information, Explore provides different user roles and permissions that give different levels of access to Explore's capabilities. Before users can access Explore, you must configure their roles and permissions.
The following roles can be configured:
- Editors can create custom reports and dashboards.
- Admins have all the same abilities as editors, but can manage viewers and permissions as well.
- Viewers can view and interact with pre-built and shared dashboards.
- No access cannot view or access Explore. This is the default role assigned to new users.
Explore permissions are configured in the agent profile in Zendesk Support. Permissions must be configured by an admin and override any default role that has been previously applied.
For more information, see Adding users to Explore.
A dashboard is your window into your business information.
Zendesk provides you with pre-built dashboards that contains information about your support metrics, agent activity, and more. You can use pre-built best practices dashboards, duplicate them to create editable copies, or create completely new dashboards.
A dashboard is made up from components known as widgets which can contain a range of different items such as queries, images, text, and more. You can add as many widgets as you want to a dashboard, and arrange them in whatever format suits your needs. Finally, you can share dashboards with others in your organization.
For more information, see:
- Metrics are quantitative data like the number of tickets, or the number of phone calls.
- Attributes are qualitative data like agent names and ticket channels. Adding an attribute to a query "slices" your results to make them more useful.
Before you begin to create queries, you must choose a dataset that gives access to the information you want. Explore features a range of different datasets that enable you to query your support tickets, Talk calls, and more. Typically, you will choose one of these pre-built datasets. However, you can also create copies of these datasets for testing (for example, if you want to create custom metrics).
For more information, see Working with datasets.
A query is a question you ask about your business information. You can ask simple question like “How many tickets do I have in an open status?” or complex questions like “Between March and December, which agents closed the most tickets?”
Query results are typically displayed as charts or tables. Explore chooses the most suitable chart format, but you can change that if you want. Once you’ve created a query, you can perform many operations on it like changing units, format, presentation, or adding complex calculations that manipulate the query results.
For more information, see:
Sharing and publishing
After you create a dashboard, you’ll likely want to share it with others in your organization. Sharing a dashboard sends an email inviting others to view it. You can additionally configure dashboards to be sent by email on a regular schedule.
You can make changes to a dashboard after you share it. When you are ready for others to see you're changes, republish the dashboard.
For more information, see:
Getting started guides
This article has given you an overview of the basic features of Zendesk Explore. However, Explore is capable of much more. For getting started information about other parts of Explore, see the following articles:
- Getting started with pre-built dashboards
- Getting started with the Explore interface
- Getting started creating queries
- Getting started creating dashboards
- Getting started modifying queries
- Getting started sharing dashboards
- Getting started with Explore: Walkthrough
- Getting started with custom metrics and attributes
The following are some great resources for finding your way around Explore and the documentation:
- Zendesk Explore Resources: A useful map of all available Explore documentation.
- Zendesk Explore FAQ: Answers to your frequently asked questions about Explore.
- If you're an Insights user, our Upgrading from Insights to Explore guide will help you move over to Explore.
- Our recipes will help you report for common business scenarios with Explore. For details, see Zendesk Explore recipes reference.
- If you want to find out about the latest updates made to the Explore docs, see What's new in the Explore docs?