We recently released a major update to the Dovetail SelfService app. There’s SO many great new capabilities here.
I would group these enhancements into 2 major categories:
Dynamic Content, Pages, and Menus – making it easy to create and edit content throughout the app Knowledgebase Enhancements – making the knowledgebase much more prevalent, approachable, and functional
Lets take a run through the highlights of this release.
Dynamic Home Page Content
When a user logs into SelfService, they’re immediately taken to the Home page.
In the past, if you wanted to change what was displayed on the home page, you would need to customize the HTML page content, and re-deploy the application.
Now, the home page content comes from a solution. So you can easily edit the solution using Dovetail Agent, and …
Unit testing is something every developer agrees should be done, but often doesn’t do. Setting it up isn’t hard after reading and evaluating what feels like a 7 course meal of modules that need to come together hand in hand to allow you to write some tests. It is fairly easy after you’ve learned more than you ever wanted to know about unit testing. Not easy at all, so I’m going to distill a stack down here …
As he says:
There were no clear examples on how to create new plugins or extensions for Remarkable though. So having worked on creating some and having a measure of success it is time to share the knowledge.
Great stuff Barrett!
I’ve seen a few questions come up recently about our Dovetail Support Center / SelfService portal, so I figured a post was in order.
Our portal vs. the app we sell
We have our Dovetail SelfService portal that we make available to our customers and community. And we sell a SelfService application.
Our Dovetail SelfService portal is basically an older, customized version of the SelfService application that we sell. It’s been customized to provide specific capabilities for our customers.
If you’re not yet a Dovetail customer, there’s a number of things you can do:
With Dovetail Agent 5 and SelfService 2, we’re using Canopy for acceptance testing. We even ship our test suites with the app, so if you customize/extend the application, you can run the tests to be sure you didn’t break anything, and you can add in your own tests for any custom functionality.
So far, Canopy has proved itself to be the nicest web testing framework we’ve used – it’s simple and stable.
Scott Hansleman recently kicked out a nice blog post talking about canopy and the F# language. In it, he provides some links to playing with F# and a simple Canopy example. Great stuff!
We’ve done a lot of work recently to improve case (and subcase) history within Dovetail Agent 5.
It feels much cleaner, is easier to read, and just feels pleasant. Plus there’s some cool new features.
Here’s a few highlights.
Avatars for users, applications, and customers are shown.
Notice that there is an avatar for Annie (who is a employee/user), Scott (who is a contact), and for Dovetail SelfService (an application).
And the avatars are clickable links. If the avatar is for a user/employee, the link goes to the employee page. If it’s a contact, it goes to the contact page.
Reverse Chronological Order
Notice that the history shows the newest entries at the top, similar to many current …
We use our Dovetail SelfService application for supporting our customers on a daily basis. It gives customers the power to access what they need, when they need it – quickly and easily.
Customers have access to:
knowledgebase product downloads product documentation license keys
And of course, they can interact with our support staff using cases:
create new cases update existing cases: add notes, upload files, change severity close cases reopen cases etc.
When a case is created via SelfService, customers pick the severity of the issue, such as:
Low – I’ve just got a question Medium – It’s minor and not significantly affecting production High – Production is heavily degraded Urgent – Production down
Ditching the Case Type
One of things we eliminated was the case type. When customers create a new case, they no longer have to choose a case type. And the case type isn’t shown on the view case page.
We do have (and use) different case types, including Problem, Question, Help Desk, Sales, Support Renewal, and a bunch more. However, when it comes to a technical support issue submitted from our customers – we don’t treat those cases any differently depending on the case type that the customer picked. Whether the customer picks Problem, Question, or Help Desk – it doesn’t matter to us. We don’t …
A colleague asked me recently about an email he had received from the support department of one of our vendors. It looked something like:
Hello, Anne Teak,
A few days ago, our support staff has replied your inquiry at:
Since then, we have not received any response back from you, and would like to know if you consider this issue to be closed. If you have any further questions, please use the link above to post them. This issue will be automatically closed out in a few days if you choose not to respond.
To access this discussion thread, navigate to the following link:
The gist of the process is that if a customer hasn’t responded after a certain period …
One of the things I’ve wanted to do for a long time is have the ability to add comments on objects within the Clarify/Dovetail system. As a specific example, I’ve wanted to be able to add comments to a solution. For those not versed in Clarify/Dovetail speak, a Solution is essentially a KnowledgeBase (KB) article.
By allowing comments, I (and others) can (hopefully) enhance the information that is within the Solution.
For example, consider a KB article that is available on the web, such as a Microsoft KB article, or a Dovetail KB article. Now, lets say that I use the information in that article, but I run into a bit of a snag, discover another tip or workaround, or perhaps I’ve even found something wrong in that article. What can I do? I’d like to be able …