Exchanging emails with other helpdesk, service desk and support software

If you are a Serio user, at some point you are almost certainly going to want to exchange emails with another support system. There are generally two cases that we see being met:

  • You have a supplier you wish to exchange information with via email as part of Supplier Management
  • You are a company that deals with external customers, and one or more of your customers has their own support system.

By exchanging emails, I mean that when you send them an email from Serio it is added to the correct ticket and processed efficiently, and likewise when the supplier or customer sends you an email from their system that Serio picks it up and places it with the right ticket.

Things like this usually work seamlessly, and I'll explain how they work. Most support services use something called a Reply Reference (in Serio's case), or a ticket id, or an email reference code. It's something that

  • uniquely identifies the originating ticket
  • is unlikely to come-up in normal email exchanges by accident

The main thing to understand is that there is short text string that can be used to identify the best ticket to add the email to.

If you are just using Serio, all you need to worry about is that the Reply Reference is quoted, which normally means putting it in all outgoing emails, so that when customers or suppliers reply it is automatically quoted back, and the email is handled correctly.

When you start to deal with an external system, all of a sudden have 2 Reply References to consider; your own, which you are familiar with, and theirs - your supplier or customer. I'll call this the 3rd Party Reference.

Here's what you need to do to make this work.

Logging an Incident for a Customer who has their own support system

In this case, you might be acting as a support supplier or 2nd line support service.

- If the customer has telephoned you, ask them for the 3rd Party Reference (remember though, they'll call it something different). Enter this value into the Customer Reference field.
- Change your eDocs to include the Customer Reference, if they don't already. Make sure that at the very least it is included on the confirmation email, and on emails you send during the life of a ticket.
 
- If the Incident comes to you by email, make sure that your Customer has included their 3rd Party Reference.
- Just log the ticket as usual, and change your eDocs to quote the Incident description (but most of you will find it is already quoted). There is usually nothing else to do.
 

- In either case, ask your customer to quote your own Replay Reference on all subsequent emails they send.

Assigning an Incident to a Supplier

In this case, you are logging the ticket and assigning to a Supplier.

- Log the ticket as normal.
- Use Supplier Management to assign the ticket to the Supplier.
- Use Supplier Management Actions (Supplier Acknowledgment) to record the 3rd Party Reference from your Supplier.
- Make sure that you include this on all of your outgoing Supplier emails by amending your eDocs to include it.

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