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OPM

The Princeton University OIT Help Desk utilizes Online Problem Management (OPM) for its call tracking/knowledgebase software.

Breakdown of OPM Elements

OPM administration is achieved through the use of five elements:

  1. Groups
  2. Queues
  3. Users
  4. E-Mail Filters
  5. KnowledgeBase


Groups

  • Signify a functional area within an organization.
  • Groups are designated to signify a grouping of queues and users.
  • Groups allow for the reporting of activity in a functional area.
  • System rights may be assigned to the group, and the members of the group.
  • Monitors may be set on Groups, triggering e-mail notification of a transferred (or lingering) ticket to the manager(s) of the group.

Queues

  • Queues are separate functional elements of Groups.
  • Tickets within OPM are owned either by queues or users.
  • A queue allows for OPM users to transfer a ticket to a particular area within a group, asking the colleagues who “watch” the queue to take action on a ticket.
  • Monitors may be set on Queues, triggering e-mail notification of a transferred (or lingering) ticket to one or multiple e-mail addresses.
  • Queues may elect to have “Security” applied to them, limiting the functions available to OPM users not associated with the queues owning Group.

Users

  • Users are consultants that use OPM to track problems and resolutions in tickets.
  • Users are a member of a Group, and are associated with a queue (for reporting purposes).
  • Users have rights, preferences, security and a display color assigned. These rights override any group rights that are assigned.
  • Monitors may be set on Users, triggering e-mail notification of a transferred (or lingering) ticket.

E-Mail Filters

  • E-Mail Filters are used to incorporate incoming email into a particular queue.

OPM organization can easily map to an Organization Chart. Each functional area would have a Group designation. Within this Group could be Queue(s), and Users would be assigned to the Group, and specifically, to a Queue. Either a Queue or a User owns tickets, and monitors can be created to trigger notification e-mail when a ticket is transferred to a Queue or User, unless they are actively “watching” their Queue on the Ticket QuickView screen.

Let’s get specific about the Group, Queue, User and E-Mail Filtering details:

Display Color: Setting the Display Color marks each user who is a member of the group with a particular display color within OPM. This can be useful when you want to indicate a group of people to whom expedited service is applied (e.g., when there are field consultants who should receive expedited service when calling the support center).

Rights: Setting Rights (either to a Group or to a User) grants rights within OPM to either every member of the group, or the individual user. When granted, these rights appear as options in the menu bar on the left of the OPM window.

  • Edit Headline: allows the user(s) to edit the internal and external headlines.
  • Run Reports: Allows the user(s) to run activity reports.
  • Set Close By Group Restriction: Allows user(s) to mark a ticket as “Close by Group X,” forcing the person to whom the ticket was transferred to return the ticket to the originating group for closure. This allows the Help Desk, for example, to get the tickets it transfers to other groups back to allow for customer notification.
  • Group Maintenance: Allows user(s) to create and edit Groups.
  • Queue Maintenance: Allows user(s) to create and edit queues.
  • User Maintenance: Allows user(s) to create and edit users.
  • Incoming Email Maintenance: Allows user(s) to create and edit incoming email filters.
  • Knowledgebase Maintenance: Allows user(s) to create and edit the knowledge solutions.
  • Keyword Maintenance: Allows user(s) to create and edit the keyword dictionary used by the knowledgebase.
  • Browse Tree Maintenance: Allows user(s) to create and edit the browse tree in use by the knowledge base.
  • Send E-mail: Allows user(s) to send the comment text of a ticket and/or the text of a solution to a customer.
  • Send E-mail Footer: Allows user(s) to attach a pre-defined e-mail footer to outgoing e-mail.

Security: Setting Security on a queue or user allows for the member of the queue or the individual user to control which users in OPM can see, annotate and take ownership of the tickets owned by the queue or user.

  • Queue accepts transfers: Controls if members of other groups can transfer tickets to this queue. This is done by building the “Transfer to a Queue” list based on this security setting. The “Transfer to a Queue” list includes all queues within the users home group and all the queues that are marked to accept transfers.
  • User accepts transfers: Controls if a user is willing to accept transfers to their personal list of owned tickets. . This is done by building the “Transfer to a User” list based on this security setting. The “Transfer to a User” list includes all users that are willing to accept transfers.
  • Allow others to view queued/owned tickets: This security setting regulates which tickets are viewable by others.
  • Allow others to add comments to queued/owned tickets: This security setting regulates which tickets are editable by others.
  • Allow others to take ownership of queued/owned tickets: This security setting regulates which tickets are available to be taken by others.

Preferences: Users may set their preferences according to their needs.

  • Notify via e-mail when a ticket is transferred to you: Generates an e-mail notification to the user’s designated e-mail when a ticket is transferred directly to the user.
  • View due date: Allows the user to view and set the Due Date option in tickets.
  • View due date in queue list: Displays the Due Date for each ticket in the queue list.
  • View ticket description in queue list: Displays the contents of the Ticket Description field in the queue list.
  • View creation date in queue list: Displays the Creation Date in the queue list.
  • View customer street address in queue list: Displays the customer’s street address in the queue list. (This is particularly useful for field consultants.)
  • View comments on separate line when viewing tickets: When viewing tickets, changes the display of the Problem History table to allow for full screen comment display.
  • When viewing tickets in a queue, also show tickets owned by users associated with that queue: Shows the tickets owned by users associated with a queue. (This is particularly helpful when looking for the full picture of open tickets associated with a functional area.)
  • Your default queue: Controls the queue that OPM displays by default in the left menu bar.
  • Send e-mail notifications to: Controls a user’s e-mail notifications.
  • From address for outgoing e-mail messages: Sets the “From” address for outgoing e-mail messages. Users may always override this address manually. (Is particularly useful when corresponding with customers via e-mail; routes their responses back to a selected address rather than an individual consultant’s address.)

Monitors: Monitors trigger e-mail notification of a transferred (or lingering). To create a monitor consider the

  • duration of time you want to elapse before the trigger sends the e-mail notification
  • the priority of the ticket
  • to whom the e-mail notification should be sent
  • Use the “Notification From” filed to indicate a from address other than the system address. (This is helpful when the e-mail notification is being delivered to an e-mail list which only accepts e-mail from a subscribed member of the list; indicate a valid sender address for the e-mail list.)

Groups, Queue and Users can have multi-tiered monitors. For example, a queue can have a monitor that notifies Jane of a recently transferred ticket after 5 minutes, and then notifies the manager of the group if, after one hour, Jane has not taken ownership of the ticket.

 Take care to insure e-mail notifications are not sent to an e-mail address that is delivered to OPM for e-mail incorporation, creating a loop.

E-Mail Filters: E-Mail Filters are used to incorporate incoming email into a specific queue. E-mail sent to a specified address then becomes a ticket in that queue. OPM knows to keep associated attachments, and they are viewable within the ticket. Set up e-mail filters in this way:

  1. Set the delivery address of the desired e-mail to the address OPM checks for mail. (We use opm@princeton.edu.)
  2. Create a new E-Mail Filter designating into which queue the incoming e-mail should flow.

Incoming e-mail will be incorporated into the queue designated in the E-Mail Filter. Here is an example:

 The e-mail address helpdesk@princeton.edu is set on the Princeton e-mail server to be routed to opm@princeton.edu. OPM has an E-Mail Filter designated to deliver “helpdesk” to the HD E-Mail queue. When we check for mail (we check every 5 minutes), the e-mail incorporation code POPs the mail from opm@princeton.edu and then sorts the e-mail according to the E-Mail Filters. We have hundreds of E-Mail Filters sorting incoming e-mail. Being able to respond to customer’s e-mail requests has become one of the most useful features of OPM.

E-Mail Filters has a fail-safe feature to catch any e-mail that has been directed to OPM’s e-mail address (in the example above, opm@princeton.edu) and deliver it to the Help Desk Manager’s queue for review. This feature uses the “Default ID” to indicate to which queue any stray, unassigned email messages should be delivered. We recommend making this queue be one that is actively watched by members of the support staff at your organization.


Last Updated: Thursday February 19 2009