Allow date to be cleared in triggers and automations


  • Official comment
    Bailey Whitaker-Lea
    Zendesk Product Manager

    Hi Everyone - 

    New PM for Triggers & Automations here, catching up on the requests in the Community. It has been great to see all the feedback from you! I certainly understand your frustrations around needing more flexibility in your trigger conditions and actions. While we are actively working to improve Triggers this is not a feature we currently have planned, however it is in our backlog of potential improvements. 
    Thank you for sharing your use cases as this helps our Product teams tremendously to know what is most important to you. 

  • Dan Ross
    Community Moderator

    +1 here. Any data that you put into a ticket field should be able to be modified by Triggers & Automations!

    This includes:

    Date Fields

    Text Fields

    Numeric fields

    Decimal Fields


    Without this ability, these field values get inherited on Followup tickets and mess with workflows and potentially analytics data.

  • C.W. Holeman III

    People have been begging for a solution for this problem for five whole years. Half a decade! It is absolutely absurd that such a basic piece of functionality does not exist in the first place. Let alone after five years of people actively asking for it. The inability to clear a value from a field is so basic, but it should've been the first thing that was created when setting up fields. Set a value, remove the value. This is very basic. How is it possible that this is still not implemented? Zendesk is old enough to drink in Germany. And yet we still can't clear a date value?

  • Jonathan March
    Community Moderator

    Sure enough, as soon as I removed that action, this automation started working again. I guess ZD is protecting us from running broken automations that would silently leave tickets in unexpected state. End of investigation, as far as I am concerned, sadly.

    So Nicole, we are back to the original request -- please  allow triggers, macros, and automations to clear a date field (while we are at it -- please allow macros to set a date field!)


  • Frans

    To be honest; unbelievable this hasn't been fixed yet. Such a simple 'feature' can't take years for you to fix/implement?

  • DJ Jimenez

    +1 to this. We have a couple use cases:

    • We've expanded the Due Date functionality of Task-Type tickets to be used across various other types of tickets by creating a hidden custom "revisit date" date field. Once the ticket is revisited, the revisit date remains on the ticket. It should be cleared out if a ticket doesn't need to be revisited.
    • We've also created an "agent-deemed solved" date field to compensate for the delayed resolution time caused by bump-bump-solves (when an agent puts a ticket on pending and BBS solves the ticket out, we use this date as the solved date). We need this field to be cleared out if a ticket re-opens and is no longer solved.

    Although we can make configurations to have ticket flows ignore the fields, the bigger problem is around data and reporting.

  • Dan Sowden

    +1 for this

    We've implemented a flavour of the 'bump bump solve' process that will send an email to the requester on a date driven by a date ticket field, but there's no way of clearing the date when the client replies. This means we've had to implement some triggers to default the date, but it's added some complexity and some risks of accidentally emailing at the wrong time to what should be a fairly simple process.

    In an ideal world we could have a single trigger that checks if the date is "not present", and default it to X days in the future - but because we can't clear it when the requester replies, we also need to check if the date is in the past (which isn't possible directly, so we check if it's in the previous 9999999 days) or if it's in the next X days before we change it to X.

  • Kieran Thorpe

    Hi Stephen Belleau I can indeed.

    I'll give a scenario and then explain how we implemented this.

    A user contacts our support team and lets say they need time to be with the user in person but they are not free or available until a weeks time. We will book an appointment with them and then utilize task and due date placing the ticket on hold.

    The date comes, some work is completed but we need to then work with a 3rd party and place our ticket on hold awaiting an update.

    Unfortunately this leads to an issue, I don't want tickets to sit on hold for long periods of time, our agents often forget about tickets they've placed on hold and they can go stale. To combat this I have an automation that takes tickets off hold after a few days. However if something is scheduled I don't want those tickets to come off hold prematurely.

    because a due date has been set at some point, this ticket is now effectively able to stay on hold indefinitely.


    the triggers and automations responsible work like this:



    1) Tag a ticket if there is a due date

    - If due date is present, add tag due_date_pending


    1) Take ticket off hold on due date

    - IF hours until due date less than 2 & contains none of the following tag due_date_passed THEN set status open, set priority urgent, add tag due_date_passed, remove tag due_date_pending

    n.b you need to add a tag to stop this looping, and the removing of the other tag as i mentioned is immediately undone by the trigger

    2) Take ticket off hold after 3 days

    - IF status  is on hold & hours since on hold is greater than 72 & contains none of the following tag due_date_pending THEN set status to Open


    I know I can make the trigger ignore any tickets that have the due_date_passed tag as well, but this creates more nightmares if lets say a new date needs to be set in the future again, i have to open the tags field up to my agents and let them edit/delete them manually (something were trying to avoid).

    Simply clearing the due date field would make this so much cleaner and easier.


  • Jonathan March
    Community Moderator

    Yes, would be useful. When a reminder automation fires, the old ping date is no longer useful, just adds another manual step for the agent to clear it.

  • Joel Hellman

    Hey guys

    You should be able to do this already using the workaround of action Set to a number of days from now, and then setting the value to something unreasonable high, which will clear it. Try it out and let me know if it works.

    I also wish Zendesk would support this natively. 

    Here is a screenshot and some more context; clearing values is an unresolved issue not just restricted to date fields:

  • Joel Hellman

    Yeah, I see the same behavior on my end after some tests, it seems this workaround no longer works. 

  • DJ Jimenez

    I've found a bug, or another use case, where we need custom date fields to be cleared.

    Follow-up tickets do something to custom date fields regardless of if there's a value in the original ticket or not. This is problematic when the field is null in the original ticket.

    Follow-up tickets with null custom date fields make them blank instead of setting it to null (blank and null are not the same). This causes follow-up tickets with blank custom date fields to be included in "Before" or "Before or on" conditions, where ones with null custom date fields are not.

  • Trevor Sather

    +1 for this - we'd like to be able to clear our "Reminder date" field when the date is reached and an email triggered to the assigned agent.

  • Reservations

    Yes please! We need this as well

  • Alejandro Colon

    I completely agree with Dan on the fact that this messes with metrics and workflows. 

    As mentioned, I don't believe this should be that hard to implement and would not affect Organizations that would not know about the new ability. 

  • Evan Chern

    We would like to have this feature as well, we are using custom "On Hold Until" date and having the date be present for tickets that are not "On Hold" anymore is confusing and breaking some of our automations. Honestly, I am surprised this is not implemented from the start.

  • WRO Jacuk-Zurak, Marta


    It would be great to have the ability to clear Date custom fields via Triggers. We have such date set automatically when some conditions are met - it is called a Payment date. Sometimes the Payment is rejected and it would be good to clear this date as the Payment wasn't done on that day.

    Thank you

  • Jonathan March
    Community Moderator

    It is frustrating; this does seem like a fundamental gap in functionality.

    I think you know this already, Kieran, but for the record -- just because an issue has been open a long time doesn't mean that it will percolate to the top and be implemented. There will always be more plausible features wanted by some people than are feasible to implement.

    This fix seems like a logical no-brainer, but that might just be my own stake in it!

  • Dale Bone

    I'd like to add my support for triggers (any maybe automations) gaining the ability to clear a date field. 

    We use the date field all the time. However if a case is solved but then reopened at a later date the date field still shows the last date that was set by an agent. Ideally we'd like this cleared as it can cause confusion in our teams.

  • Carlos Santos

    Clearing dates would be useful, but clearing ANY fields would be perfect. Like text fields, for instance.

  • Ariya

    Is it still no update??? it's 2023

    we still can't clear the "date type field" using a trigger


    BTW, this request is from 2018, why hasn't there been an update until now?


    btw, if you want to clear "field type text", you can use this text (in trigger action):


    Dan Ross Carlos Santos

  • Nicole Saunders
    Zendesk Community Manager

    Thanks for posting over here, Bryan! We will be interested to see if this idea would be useful for many other users. 

  • Jonathan March
    Community Moderator

    Thanks, Joel.

    I was excited to try this suggestion, and tried modifying an automation's action to set the ping date to an unreasonably high value (998765432109876543210), but the "ping date reached" automation didn't run at all AFAICT, which is worse than the original status. I'll investigate further as time permits, starting with manually reverting the automation to its prior state [speaking of which, it's unfortunate that automations don't yet support revision history as triggers do!].

  • Joel Hellman

    Here is a follow-up/clarification on my tip for clearing the date by setting an unreasonable high (invalid) date. 

    So, this only works for triggers (not automations), and only if the ticket is being created

    That means, you can use it on triggers that runs as followup tickets are being created, e.g:

    Ticket Is: Created
    Channel Is: Closed ticket

    In this scenario, the trigger will clear the ticket date field, which is otherwise inherited by the followup-ticket from the original closed ticket. That was always how I was using the workarond I mentioned, to clear some dates fields being inherited on followup tickets.

    I just assumed it would work for automations and triggers updates as well, which was incorrect.

  • Jonathan March
    Community Moderator

    I just tried Joel Hellman's workaround for custom date field via a trigger on a newly created followup ticket. 

    It worked (Yay!) but the fact that it's so hacky, and that even this is only available on triggers on ticket creation (i.e. not for updates, not for automations) remains a significant pain point.

  • Kirill Akimov


    It is definitely an inconvenient moment in Zendesk's usage experience. I have an example when an agent can't do anything and has to operate tickets with fields filled with wrong values: in ticket X date field x was set to specific value, then the ticket was marked as solved and in a few days the follow-up ticket was created. The new ticket Y was with pre-filled date field y that was copied from parent-ticket. There is any option to avoid such a situation because even Admin can't change the value of the date field to nothing.    

  • Kieran Thorpe

    This is super frustrating and i dont understand how something that was opened so long ago is still not implemented? It seems like common and basic functionality that should exist.

    We stick tickets on hold with a due date in the future and utilise a trigger to tag them, we then have an automation that sets their priority / and open status once the due date is met

    The annoyance comes where the automation clears the initial tag but the trigger instantly re adds it as it detects a due date and there is no way to clear it.

    If there is more work to be done or the date needs amending and the ticket needs to be put on hold for another reason it causes havok / manual work removing tags or due dates etc.

  • Stephen Belleau
    Community Moderator

    Kieran Thorpe I feel like there should be a way to work around that issue. Could you elaborate on the problem you're trying to solve, and what conditions/actions you've set up in your trigger/automation? 

  • Stephen Belleau
    Community Moderator

    Hey Kieran Thorpe thanks for laying that out!

    We do something similar with our On Hold tickets, but I think the key difference to avoid the issue you face is we have a third automation.

    3) Reopen tickets on hold after due date

    IF status is on hold & hours since on hold is greater than 72 & hours since due date is greater than 72 THEN set status to Open

    Could that be a workaround for you?

    (Regardless of workaround, I still agree with the idea of being able to clear due date!)

  • Patrick Lanwehr


    i just found this thread by chance. I fixed that by changing the date "to a certain number of days: 0". The trigger updates the date field to "today". I really don't like that, but it works fine.

    The automation works with "is within the next 1" so it only works with "today" and ignores yesterday and older..

    I also added an automatic internal note to the ticket to inform you of the reason for reopening the ticket.


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