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CRM as helpdesk/ticket system?

Microsoft Dynamics CRM Forum

somedude asked a question on 27 Dec 2008 1:11 PM

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We are looking to move to a more robust helpdesk/crm offering than what we have now.  Our needs are pretty simple, but the volume of data we're managing is becoming a bit too sparse.

We'd like for clients outside our company to be able to email us and have these emails automatically get tagged/turned into a ticket.  If possible, at this point, I'd like to be able to assign these tickets to a company employee, but that is not a must.  I'd like all the communication back/forth to all be contained in the ticket so it's reviewable.  Finally, we'd like a way for the client (if possible) to be able to close the ticket.  If the client hasn't responded in a day - nudge them again w/o our intervention.

 Is CRM a good solution for this?

Leon Tribe responded on 27 Dec 2008 2:35 PM
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Dynamics CRM will give you a good fraction of what you need out of the box. Emails sent to a specific email address e.g., can be automatically accumulated on a queue for review by the support staff. Support staff can then go to the queue, review the email and at the click of a button convert these into tickets. Alternatively, a support manager could review the queue, convert the emails to tickets and assign them out as required. All activities performed for the ticket are lodged against the ticket for easy review. You also have the opportunity to manage contracts against the ticket. For example if you have a support contract in place to provide x number of support calls per month, you can enter this into CRM and then associate the ticket to the contract and keep track of how much support they have left. The final requirement of having a client close out tickets is not available out of the box but would not be difficult to customise. An accelerator for CRM which provides exactly this functionality is coming soon (read as early to mid next year) from Microsoft free of charge. Depending on whether you expose CRM directly to the client, there may be a licensing implication in that you'll have to buy the external connector. If practical, I'd recommend you have clients email the support address when they want tickets closed out and do it manually until the accelerator is released. Nudging the clients can be done out of the box through CRM workflow, which would monitor the ticket to see how long it has been open and then send the client an email automatically if it has been open for too long. Leon Tribe
somedude responded on 27 Dec 2008 2:42 PM


 *Excellent* reply.  Thank you so very much for your thoroughness - I appreciate it.

 I guess the only other question is this; what do you recommend for reading up on how to do this stuff?  Any good books or sites?  I am a complete newbie to CRM, but quite experienced with Office/etc.

 Again, thank you very much.

Curt Spanburgh responded on 27 Dec 2008 10:18 PM
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Don't forget your ability to customize .  Add new entities to reach your goals for Helpdesk support.

In addition you could create a composite app by including an IFrame with a link to say a Share Point site that can be viewed within a customized entity in the workplace application of CRM.


Leon Tribe responded on 28 Dec 2008 12:31 AM
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I haven't read any of the books out there so I can't personally endorse them but online reviews say a lot of positive things. There are a good number of excellent blogs out there but these generally centre around complex configuration such as multiple currency setup or customisation. For these a google search with "Dynamics CRM" as one of the search terms. For configuration, my recommendation would be to download the demo CRM virtual machine and play about. The context-based help is quite good and the configuration tools in CRM are web based and seriously easy to use. Just remember to publish after each change otherwise it won't appear to normal users. There are other great download items from Microsoft including the implementation guide (guide for installing and setting up and excellent consulting tools), SDK (guide for customisation) and user guide. Go to and download what makes sense ;) Leon Tribe
Imran -MVP responded on 4 Jan 2009 6:17 PM

See the ticket system of CRM 4.0







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