Channels are avenues through which cases comes in, and through which case communications occur. In the early days of support systems, the phone was pretty much the only channel there was for correspondence. But there has been a tremendous expansion in the number of ways we connect with each other and do business. ServiceDesk is on top of that trend, providing a wide array of case communication channels.
Dynamic Case Management Channels
These channels are available in all Dynamic Case Managment applications, including the ServiceDesk application.
When customers send a message to an Email Channel:
- If the message is in reply to an existing case, their comments are automatically recorded in the case history.
- If it is a new message and you have configured the channel to allow it, a new case can be created automatically.
- You can choose to restrict that privilege to known customers, or open it to anyone
- You can also choose to create a new Contact record on the spot, when someone new creates a case, so you have them in your system.
- The initial Email Channel that comes with ServiceDesk can be used for experimentation, and for internal use. But for your external customers, you'll want a channel that includes your brand--something like support@MyCompany.com. You can set up as many email channels as you need for that purpose. For example: product1-support@MyCompany.com and product2-support@MyCompany.com.
- Learn more:
You can generate code to embed in your website, so customers can create a case by filling out a form. That form can include a Captcha segment, where the user types the characters displayed on the screen, to ensure that it is a person who is filling out the form, rather than a computer program.
You can let the platform handle the form processing, specifying which fields to display and which are required. You insert a small link into your web page, and that's it. The platform handles the rest. Or you can take greater control of the form by generating HTML. You can then customize the HTML in any number of ways before adding it to your website.
- Learn more: Embedding a Record-Creation Web Form in Your Web Site
These channels are available only in the ServiceDesk application.
The Service Portal is a place for registered customers to add and view cases. In addition to tracking their cases, you can also set things up to provide your customers with:
- A Knowledge Base that contains a collection of articles you have categorized and published, with some articles reserved for internal use.
- A Community that allows your customers to interact with each other, and which allows a Case Agent to convert a question to a case with the click of a button.
- You can configure the portal so that only contacts in your database can use it, or you can open it to the public. If open, you can restrict access to registered users, or allow unregistered "guests" to take advantage of its features.