This is one of a series of blog posts dealing with the criteria to be included when reviewing which PSA to purchase.
At a high level, all solutions will generally look the same as they are designed to cover the same problem. However, there are many detailed considerations that can make a big difference in how effective the solution is in support of your business.
In this blog we examine the subtle difference between ticket status lists and ticket workflows.
All ticket systems will allow you to update the status of a ticket. Is it awaiting feedback from a customer etc.? Ticket lists filtered by status allow managers to review team effectiveness and make sure issues are being progressed to closure. However, in a system that simply contains a list of statuses, this doesn’t help describe a journey so has limitations.
A workflow on the other hand describes a path (or more correctly a range of alternative paths) from a ticket being opened to being closed. Having the available statuses that you can pick limited, based upon the status you are in, provides a path for the ticket workflow to progress along.
Why does this matter?
Because transitions between statuses are valuable state points.
They can be used:
- To model richer SLAs; allowing a single workflow to have multiple staged SLAs, useful, for instance, if the workflow is modelling a new employee on-boarding, or the set-up of a new contract;
- To auto-add a checklist; so that the checks necessary to move from one status to the next are clear to the user;
- To make checklist completion required; inserting a checklist at a point in a workflow allows you to enforce completion of the checklist prior to enabling the option to progress through the workflow. This is a key quality assurance point, useful underpinning to ISO accreditation; and
- To trigger a notification; a path point can be related to a notification as a clear indicator of a certain stage having been reached. Thus, key stakeholders can be notified of progress in a structured manner. The ability to call a webhook from the notification that in turn calls an API can then create process automation with the API creating other objects (including dependent tickets!)
None of this is possible with a flat open select status listing. Path-based workflows are vital to automated processes and dramatically improve the service team’s effectiveness.
If you are looking at alternative PSA systems, ask the question, it could make all the difference.
About the Author: Harmony Business Systems Ltd (HBS) is the company behind HarmonyPSA, the most complete cloud PSA software on the market. Developed with functionality to cater for even the most complex needs of MSPs, VARs, ISVs and Professional Services organisations, HarmonyPSA truly is the next generation of PSA systems. Follow HarmonyPSA on Twitter, LinkedIn or Website