Home 9 A Beginner’s Guide to Setting up Zendesk 9 Zendesk Triggers: Setup, testing, and understanding how triggers are processed

Zendesk Triggers: Setup, testing, and understanding how triggers are processed

by | May 25, 2023 | A Beginner’s Guide to Setting up Zendesk

Zendesk, the dynamic customer support platform, offers an array of tools that enable businesses to streamline their support workflow. Among these, ‘Triggers’ are particularly potent in automating the ticket workflow. In this blog post, we’ll cover the ins and outs of setting up Zendesk triggers, delve into trigger categories, explain how to test triggers using test tickets, and finally, unravel the recursive processing of triggers by Zendesk.

Setting Up Zendesk Triggers

Triggers are business rules that you define for tickets. They are automatic actions taken by Zendesk when tickets meet certain conditions. Here’s a step-by-step guide to setting them up:

  1. Navigate to the “Triggers” page in the Zendesk Admin Center.
  2. Click “Add trigger” to open the trigger creation interface.
  3. Name your trigger appropriately, based on its function. This helps in managing and identifying triggers later.
  4. Define your ‘Conditions’. These are the rules your ticket must meet for the trigger to be activated.
  5. Next, specify the ‘Actions’. These are the events that will occur when a ticket meets the defined conditions.
  6. Save your trigger.

Remember, the order of triggers matters. They are not processed simultaneously but one after another in the order they appear in the triggers list.

Trigger Categories

To further organize your triggers, Zendesk enables the use of Trigger Categories. You can group related triggers under a category to keep your triggers organized. This is especially beneficial when you have a large number of triggers.

To create a trigger category, go to the Triggers page, click “Add Category”, name it appropriately, and then drag and drop the triggers you want to group into the category.

Setting Up an Individual Zendesk Trigger

When setting up a trigger in Zendesk, a systematic approach not only helps maintain clarity but also ensures smooth functioning. Here’s a step-by-step guide for setting up a Zendesk trigger effectively:

1. Naming the Trigger

The first step in creating a trigger is giving it an appropriate name. Your trigger’s name should clearly describe its function. This is crucial because it helps administrators quickly identify what a trigger does without having to investigate its conditions and actions.

For example, a trigger meant to send a welcome email to a new customer could be named “Send Welcome Email to New Customers.”

2. Providing a Clear Description

While a name gives a brief idea about a trigger’s function, a detailed description makes it easier for others (or future you) to understand the purpose of the trigger.

In the description, summarize what the trigger does, the conditions that must be met, and the actions it performs. Continuing the previous example, the description could be “This trigger sends a welcome email to new customers once they submit their first ticket. It checks for ‘new’ tickets created by ‘end-users’ and sends an automatic response with a welcome message.”

3. Setting Up the Conditions

Next, you’ll specify the conditions your tickets must meet for the trigger to activate. Zendesk offers two types of conditions: ‘Meet ALL of the following conditions’ and ‘Meet ANY of the following conditions.’

  • “Meet ALL” conditions must all be true for the trigger to fire.
  • “Meet ANY” conditions need at least one to be true for the trigger to fire.

It’s important to be precise with your conditions to avoid unintended activation of the trigger. For our example, the conditions could be:

Meet ALL of the following conditions:

  • Ticket is… Created
  • Ticket status… Is New
  • Ticket tags… Contains none of the following… welcome_email_sent

4. Specifying the Actions

Once your conditions are set, you’ll need to define the actions that will take place when those conditions are met. Actions are what the trigger does – it could be anything from changing the status of the ticket, assigning it to a specific agent or group, or sending an automatic response to the customer.

For the example we’ve been using, the actions could be:

  • Email user (requester)… Subject: Welcome to Our Service, Body: (Compose your welcome message)
  • Add tags… welcome_email_sent

This tag will prevent the trigger from sending the welcome email more than once to the same user.

With these steps, you can effectively set up an individual trigger in Zendesk. Remember to save your trigger once all the details have been filled in.

The process of creating triggers encourages a high level of customization, making Zendesk a powerful tool for your customer service needs. Understanding each aspect – naming, description, conditions, and actions – is key to leveraging its full potential.

Testing Triggers

To ensure your triggers work as expected, you should create test tickets that meet the trigger conditions.

  1. Create a new ticket that matches the conditions of the trigger you want to test.
  2. Once the ticket is submitted, check whether the expected actions have been performed.

If the trigger doesn’t function as expected, you can check your trigger conditions and actions for any mistakes. Remember, the testing ticket must meet all the conditions defined for the trigger.

Recursive Processing of Triggers

One of the unique aspects of Zendesk’s trigger mechanism is its recursive processing. When a ticket is created or updated, Zendesk doesn’t just loop through the stack of triggers once; it loops through them recursively.

Here’s how it works:

  1. Zendesk starts from the top of the list of triggers.
  2. If a ticket meets the conditions of a trigger, Zendesk applies the corresponding actions.
  3. Zendesk then goes back to the top of the trigger list.
  4. It goes through each trigger again, skipping only the ones that were previously fired.

This recursion is powerful but can also lead to some complex scenarios. For instance, a trigger fired later in the process can undo an action applied by a trigger fired earlier. It’s vital to understand this mechanism and plan your triggers accordingly.

In conclusion, understanding Zendesk’s triggers and their recursive nature can help you automate your customer support process effectively. By creating comprehensive triggers and testing them thoroughly, you can ensure a seamless workflow and improve the efficiency of your support team.