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In the 90’s, I used to love watching this TV show called Captain Planet.

The cartoon centered around a team of kids with special rings who fought evil people who harmed the environment. When the kids faced a problem too big to solve themselves, they would put their rings together and summon superhero Captain Planet.

He’d swoop in with his tag line, “By your powers combined, I am Captain Planet!”

At Helpshift, we don’t have special rings, but we’ve got exciting new workflow features that we’ve been steadily rolling out over the past couple months:

  • Wait Time Sorting (Issues List)
  • Smart Views (Custom Filters)
  • Insert FAQ (Canned Messages)
  • Bulk Actions

And by these powers combined, you can be Captain Efficient – the superhero support agent who swoops in to delight users with speedy customer service. Here’s a quick run down of your new agent workflow powers:

Wait Time Sorting

Inspired by customer development by one of our earliest adopter customers, wait time sorting reflects how support agents are trained to serve customers who have been waiting the longest first. We actually went a step beyond to further prioritize the issues list.

The issues are separated into two tiers:

  1. Needs agent’s attention (red state, bold text) – It includes new issues and issues where the customer has replied back. They are sorted by longest wait time first.
  2. Doesn’t need agent’s attention (gray state, light text) – It includes resolved and rejected issues and issues where the agent is waiting for the customer to reply. These issues are sorted by time since last agent activity.

Smart Views

If you need to further organize your issue workflow, check out Smart Views. You can segment your issues list by platform, app title, ticket status, assignee, and even tags.

For example, you could create separate Smart Views for iOS issues versus Android issues. As a manager, you might want to create Smart Views for each of your agents. As a developer, you could create a Smart View for issues tagged “bug”.

Insert FAQ

Your users don’t always read your FAQs. You also can’t predict every common question. That’s why we tightly integrated our FAQs with canned messages – they are one and the same. Using FAQs as canned messages also creates a feedback loop that encourages you to continually fine tune your FAQs to be more useful to real-life, well, frequently asked questions.

You don’t want every canned message to be viewable by the world as an FAQ though (e.g. your canned reply to feature requests). To address this, just mark your FAQ as unpublished.

Bulk Actions

When used in combination with other workflow features, such as Wait Time Sorting, Smart Views, and Bulk Actions can be incredibly powerful for coordinating the team or quickly closing out a bunch of common issues.

One way to use bulk actions is to find a bunch of similar issues and assign them a particular agent. In turn, that agent can look in his ‘My Issues’ queue and then bulk respond and resolve tickets after a closer inspection.

Bulk actions

We hope you love these new features as much as I love Captain Planet.

Published August 12, 2013
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