NetHelpDesk has been developed over the decades to be the very best ticketing system it can be, allowing to track tickets from beginning to end, and all actions on the ticket during its lifetime. The Project Management within NetHelpDesk allows for calls to be linked together to manage a larger project, using Parent and Child relationship style, to allow sleek traceability, time and resource management and fluid communications.
Whether your projects are part of your tickets, or separated into their own “Projects” area, is entirely your decision as a business. Project tickets have all the same wonderful features as any other ticket type would have, but in this guide, we discuss the options available to you to use them specifically for projects.
The first thing, if you want your tickets for “Projects” kept in the separate area of NetHelpDesk called “Projects, is to nominate the ticket type(s) that are used for handling project tickets.
1. Go to N > Setup > Main Configuration > Tickets.
2. Edit the ticket type, or create a new ticket type or types that you wish to use solely for project work.
3. On the Details tab, select the checkbox that is titled “Is a Project”.
4. In the Field List and Custom Fields area, move the four fields below, from the left-hand column, to the right-hand column.
a. Project Time Budget
b. Project Time Actual
c. Project Money Budget
d. Project Money Actual
5. Your ticket types selected will now be kept in the “Projects” area on the main screen menu option, and not with your tickets.
Let’s say that a new project needs to be raised to get a new Laptop for the new Manager that just started. A parent is raised called “New Manager’s New Laptop”, and that parent ticket is assigned to Jayne, who ensures the project as a whole is completed efficiently, and within budget.
As part of that project, Jayne creates 4 child tickets to order the new laptop from the third party Supplier, another to configure it with the standard configuration for Managers, another to create the new user on the network, patch a new phone port at their desk, another one to patch the network port, and assigns all four child tickets to Dan, Andrew, Katie and Teresa respectively, to look after each particular task.
In this instance, all four tasks can be done at the same time, and none of them reliant on the other one being completed, in order for work to commence on that task.
The functionality in NetHelpDesk allows for “Parent and Child” relationships between tickets. This means that lots of smaller tasks, or “Child” tickets can be linked to one larger “Parent” ticket, which “in charge” of the “Child” tickets.
Each of the tickets, regardless of whether parent or child, can be assigned to the Technicians that are in charge of that ticket. Each ticket can only be assigned to one Technician at any one time, but can be reassigned if necessary.
In Project Example 1, Jayne can update her parent ticket with notes, and choose to add the same note to the child tickets, and also oversee high level status of child tickets from within her parent tickets using the “Linked tickets” tab.
The Project Time and Money budgets allow her to track money spent during the tickets lifetime, and compare against actual for later reporting.
Link tickets together in a parent / child relationship. The parent ticket is the one you are linking to. The child tickets are the ones being linked.
1. On the main screen view, select multiple tickets, by using either the CTRL key on your keyboard to select specific tickets, or the SHIFT key to select a succession of tickets, the same way you would in Windows Explorer.
2. Right click and select “Link Selected tickets”.
3. Enter the ticket ID to link to. In other words, which ticket number are you nominating as the “parent” of these “child” tickets. Don’t worry if it’s one of the tickets you have selected.
4. It will then ask you to confirm.
5. Once done, each child ticket will get a “-c” next to the ticket ID. The parent ticket gets a “-p”.
6. Open up the parent ticket, and click “Linked tickets” tab to see overview of the child tickets.
Cloning tickets can be a fast way to create multiple tickets for use in Projects, so we have added this explanation here for those who will find it beneficial.
1. Inside any ticket, simply click it’s N button, and go to File > Clone This ticket.
2. Confirm that it is ok to copy the ticket’s details, to do list and items issued to create the new ticket(s).
3. Enter the number of clones required.
4. NetHelpDesk will then make the exact number of duplicates, with an exact replica of the ticket you just cloned.
As with all tickets, all of the actions you add to a “Project” ticket will be recorded against it during its lifetime. One of the good things with ticket Types in NetHelpDesk, is that you can specify a whole host of defaults to occur when raising that call. These include:
- Making visible to end users via the end-user web interface.
- Keep an Account Manager informed.
- Start an Approval Process when it is raised.
- Override the Charge Rate for all actions.
- Set a Calendar Colour for all appointments on the ticket(s)
- Set status after an end-user update.
- Set default status
- Set default priority
- Set default Section and Technician
- Set default categorisation.
- Set Default Mailbox.
- Override standard SLA grouping for the ticket(s)
- Start a Workflow.
- Add contacts who will receive a closure e-mail upon ticket’s completion.
- Restrict Status types to this specific ticket type.
All of these can be set by editing the ticket’s details in the setup. You can use one, a few or all of them. The choice is yours.
Let’s say that a similar project to above needs to be raised to get a new Laptop for the new Manager that just started. A parent is raised called “New Manager’s New Laptop”, and that parent ticket is assigned to Jayne, who ensures the project as a whole is completed efficiently, and within budget.
As part of that project, Jayne commences a workflow that has 4 separate stages, and each stage needs to be completed before the next one can begin.
1. Order the new laptop from the third party Supplier
2. Item is unpacked, and all packaging recycled correctly.
3. Image the laptop, and setup standard Manager access paths.
4. Take the laptop to the Manager, and show how to setup and use.
The four steps are actioned by Dan, Andrew, Katie and Teresa respectively, to look after each particular task.
In this instance, all four tasks cannot be done at the same time, and each step reliant on the previous one being completed, in order for work to commence on that task.
1. Go to N > Setup > Main Configuration > Actions and Statuses.
2. In Actions, start adding action buttons that you need to use in the workflow process.
3. Ensure that these new action buttons have the Available in all workflows button unchecked.
4. Once all actions are created, go to N > Setup > Main Configuration > Workflows.
5. On the Workflow list, click Add to start a workflow.
6. Give the workflow a name, i.e. New Laptop.
7. Add notes on how the workflow is used, and why, if necessary.
8. Click Add Step to start adding the stages of the workflow.
9. Once the steps are in place, highlight the first step, and click View Step Actions.
10. Add the action buttons to the step, in the relevant order.
11. Click OK to save the workflow.
The workflow can now be specified at the ticket Type level, to start that workflow when a certain type of ticket is raised. The great thing is that each action can have its own set of defaults, such as:
- Status after an action is completed.
- Set default Charge Rate.
- Whether the action has a specific system use, such as Set Planned Date.
- Ensure the Action button uses a specific e-mail template on the communication.
- Make the SLA hold checkbox automatically selected.
- Make the SLA release checkbox automatically selected.
- Hide the action from the end-user.
- Set default billable hours.
- Set default non-billable hours
- Start and Approval Process
- Set default Section
- Set default Technician.
- Give Button own unique name, sequence appearance, and picture icon.
Against all tickets, regardless of whether the ticket is a project, opportunity or regular ticket, can have their very own To-Do list. They can be added to during the ticket’s life, pre-populated from a template, or a mixture of both.
With NetHelpDesk, ticket Templates have so many features available, which are perfect for a project setup, especially for larger projects, with multiple steps that need to be followed for quality and auditing purposes.
If you are going to create templates for parent tickets, with child tickets attached, start with the child tickets first. Then add the child tickets to the parent ticket, whilst you are creating the parent ticket.
1. Go to N > Setup > Main Configuration > ticket Templates.
2. Click Add to create a new template.
3. Specify the Summary and Details fields, and these will populate those fields in the ticket.
4. Other defaults include: ticket Type, Priority, Section, Technician, Category from any 4 of the groups, Estimate time, Exclude from SLA stats, Show on Web and link to KB Article.
5. The No URLs/Docs button changes to a URL/Docs (1) button, where the number indicates the number of documents attached to the ticket. Add as many documents as you need, whether static, moving or web-based.
6. Add the To-Do list items for this particular ticket type of all steps that must be followed.
7. If adding Child tickets to the template on the Child tickets tab, you can also specify tickets that must be closed before another child ticket is opened.
8. To create “project” of tickets, this can be done on the New ticket Details screen.
Should you have any questions regarding any steps in this guide, please speak with the NetHelpDesk Support Team.
NetHelpDesk is available on a range of devices with industry-leading functionality available throughout.