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Larger/Formatted custom field views for staff


#1

One critical aspect of our ticketing process is capturing discrete data from ticket submitters about the nature of their problem. For example, OMS Vendor, OMS Version, Customer Workflow, Product Version, FIX Session, IP Address, Order ID, etc…

Is there any way to increase the size of the custom fields area on the staff-side interface? With 20+ custom fields on any given ticket, it’s a little difficult to use. Can this view be customized at all?


#2

It’s not possible to customize the location of the fields currently. You can limit them by category however if they’re all not applicable to every type of request which usually will cut down the number shown at any one time.


#3

The trouble is that we need discrete data capture, with different requirements for fields depending on the nature of each ticket. This amounts to a good 40 customized fields for production tickets. Without a way to organize or display them more effectively, it would be very difficult to build a usable system.

Many of the fields are required, for example, on all tickets, but only upon resolution/closure. Things like “escalation reason” and “root cause.” Others are groups, like customer environment information or release information.


#4

You can group them with categories, but not based on other criteria. I haven’t seen a lot of other tools that have that level of granular custom field manipulation, you may need to go up toward the “consultingware” tier of help desk products to get that kind of granular control unfortunately.

There’s a lot out there though so it’s possible one of them does do that.

If you can’t find anything and you are ok with doing a fair bit of work we have had customers use HelpSpot as the backend of a custom front end. So you could build a front end for staff and then create/update requests via the api. As you could fully control the front end logic you could implement this sort of thing.

HelpSpot V3 also does allow for custom javascript insertion which would theoretically allow you to modify what fields are shown in the UI and when. However, it won’t be tested with such a high level of customizations and there may be places it would break, fail server site checks, etc.


#5

Service Desk Express, Remedy, and OS Ticket at least all allow fields/views to be arbitrarily customized to some degree

So there’s no plan to allow us to customize the templates/PHP for the staff interface? No chance of tabbed views for custom fields? No conditional display?

Barring that, is there any plan to add subcategories? Even if we tried to work around this issue with categories, the flat namespace is far too encumbering when we would effective have to break it up into things like “Production GUI Issue,” “Production Order Issue,” “Production System Issue,” etc… in order to have any semblance of control of the display of the fields. If we could have a main category “Production” followed by subcategories, with inheritable custom fields, that would go a long way toward addressing this for us.


#6

Yes, those are good examples. Service Desk and Remedy are both products that compete in a different space than HelpSpot (and at a significantly different price). I haven’t used OS Ticket, but being open source you could likely customize it as needed with some work.

No, we will not be allowing customization of the PHP templates. Once customized upgrading becomes difficult at best and many times impossible. For a small software company like ours supporting customized installations (outside of the customization options we build in of course) isn’t possible at our price point.

There is not a plan to add sub categories at this time. The problem with sub categories is you create long tied lists of categories that become difficult to differentiate. HelpSpot is designed to be fast to operate and learn.

I know by what you’re trying to do with the level and quantity of fields that you run a fairly complex help desk which isn’t something HelpSpot is optimized for. We certainly have customers adopt HelpSpot from things like Remedy but usually it’s for both the lower price and also to simplify. Simplification isn’t always possible in all environments, but it’s one of the aspects we try to focus on.

It’s always tricky as we get many requests that say what we offer is already complex enough :slight_smile: