Support

Documentation Akeeba Backup – User's Guide

Chapter 1. Introduction and installation

Introducing Akeeba Ticket System

Akeeba Ticket System is a component which allows you to create a support ticket system area in your website. The users will be able to create public or private tickets which can only be replied to by themselves or designated support staff. Integration with Joomla!™'s access control allows you to fine tune who can create public or private tickets (or not allowed to post any tickets all), who can provide attachments and who is member of the support staff.

[Important]Important

Please read the section below on what Akeeba Ticket System is not. Do not assume and do not infer. ATS has a limited scope: it's a support ticket system component. It is definitely not a CRM, e-commerce, invoicing, project management or custom communication hub.

Key features:

  • Deep integration with Joomla!™ ACL (access control)

  • Nested categories at an infinite depth

  • Beautiful SEF URLs with automatic URL canonicalisation without the need for a third party SEF component

  • Bootstrap / jQuery based interface, integrates perfectly with most Joomla! 2.5 and 3.0 templates

  • Custom module positions, allows you to easily customise front-end pages

  • You can turn off replies / new tickets (with an optional message)

  • Select between a BBcode editor (forum-style) or your favourite WYSIWYG editor (e.g. JCE, JoomlaCK Editor, TinyMCE and so on)

  • Automatic HTML sanitisation to prevent XSS exploits

  • Private and public tickets

  • Attachments support

  • Users can set their signature in the Joomla! user profile

  • Manager notes, for keeping private notes visible only to support staff

  • Pre-filled new ticket body, customisable per support category, guiding the user to enter all the necessary information you need to help them

  • Email notifications of new, replied to and edited tickets with customisable, HTML templates and optional support for creating/replying to tickets via email

  • Credits system: charge per ticket type or per reply, integrating with Akeeba Subscriptions

  • Integrates with standard Search and Smart Search, making public tickets searchable

  • Automatically displays related public tickets when the user files a new support ticket, reducing your support load

  • Automatically displays related Akeeba DocImport3 articles when the user files a new support ticket, reducing your support load ("FAQ" functionality)

[Important]Important

Some features are only available in the for-a-fee Akeeba Ticket System Professional edition. They are not present in the Akeeba Ticket System Core edition.

What Akeeba Ticket System is NOT

Apparently, different people understand the concept of a "support ticket system" very differently. We have been frequently asked why our software doesn't implement an "obvious" feature, even though the feature in question doesn't belong in the concept of a support ticket system. In order to prevent such issues we have decided to help you understand what Akeeba Ticket System is not.

The whole idea behind a ticket system is that you have customers creating tickets in different categories. Each category represents a particular skill set / area of expertise. You have teams of support people for each area of expertise. Any one of them can answer any ticket in the category. On most tickets only one person will handle each ticket and if they have to escalate they will assign it to someone more apt to the task. That's the idea behind the ticket assignment feature in Akeeba Ticket System.

If a ticket would only be visible to support staff if someone else (let's call them an "admin") assigned it to them then the support staff would not answer any tickets unless that "admin" went first and dispatched tickets. That's quite the opposite concept to a ticket system. If you need something like that stop looking for a support ticket system and start looking for CRM software.

Akeeba Ticket System is NOT a CRM and it won't be a CRM. Some very important corollaries:

  • You cannot have different administrator / concierge staff and support staff. If someone can assign tickets to someone else they can also themselves be assigned tickets. The opposite applies, i.e. if someone can be assigned and reply to tickets they can also assign tickets to someone else.

  • You cannot have predefined escalation paths. The status of a ticket can be changed to any other status any time by any member of the support staff. Escalation paths (e.g. an Open ticket must first go to first level support before being tagged as "needs review by supervisor") is something that a CRM can handle.

  • The support staff cannot see only the tickets assigned to them. They will see all open tickets with the Latest Open Tickets view, even if they are assigned to other members of the support staff.

  • Any member of the support staff can reply to any ticket, even if that ticket is assigned to a different member of the support staff. When doing support you will frequently need the combined experience of two or more members of your support staff to handle complex cases, that's why.

  • You cannot display the total time spent per client. You can pull a list of their tickets and see the time spent on each one, but you definitely cannot print a cumulative report or, most importantly, display a report per week, month, year or other time period. This is what a CRM or a project management software does.

  • You cannot handle client invoicing through Akeeba Ticket System. This is what a CRM sometimes does (and definitely what an invoicing application is designed to do).

  • You cannot have an FAQ section inside Akeeba Ticket System. This is a feature that's best implemented using Joomla! itself. FAQ sections are a relic of support ticket system software which runs outside of a CMS (Content Management System) like Joomla!. Since you'd need a way to provide organised content for the FAQ section they implemented a miniature CMS. But Akeeba Ticket System runs inside one of the most advanced Content Management Systems out there: Joomla!. It is simply against reason trying to duplicate the functionality of Joomla! inside a Joomla! component when you can simply use Joomla! itself to handle content.

If you need any of the above features do not use Akeeba Ticket System. These are features that are decidedly outside the scope of ATS and will not be implemented.

If you are unsure if something you want is possible please ask us a pre-sales question. If you do subscribe to Akeeba Ticket System Professional without asking us a pre-sales questions, especially if any feature is not explicitly documented to be working exactly as you need it for your project or simply doesn't even exist, we regret to inform you that no, they won't be implemented and no, this is not an acceptable reason for a refund per our Terms of Service. Assumptions and inference are also not acceptable refund reasons. For example, when we say that there is a credits system you must not assume that there is an undocumented e-commerce feature hidden somewhere. In fact, the documentation states the opposite. In this example, asking us for a refund because Akeeba Ticket System doesn't have an e-commerce feature is unacceptable. Please do ask a pre-sales question before you buy a subscription.

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