The one thing I’ve seen over the last 9+ years of using an IT incident system is a lack of email conversation tracking. First in Altiris and, now, in Service Manager 2010. It’s insanely frustrating that developers don’t fully account for the one obvious and entrenched enterprise communication method.
“Email threads from hell” is what I call them. You’ve seen them. The 76+ email replies to a simple request or question. When they get rolling, you can see these conversations roll on for days, even weeks.
And what does Altiris do with these, if they include the IT help request email address? It opens a ticket for the original and a new ticket for each reply. So does SCSM 2010. All 76+ of them. That’s right. 76 stinkin’ tickets for “can I get the new iPhone?” email request that Joe in facilities sent to every IT email distribution list. My poor Helpdesk queue manager then spends the next hour or so using the “edit multiple tickets” process to clean up the mess. Sure, I can remove our ticket system’s email address, but then we have to manually forward emails after manually entering the ticket in the subject line.
(NOTE: Why can’t we edit multiple tickets in SCSM 2010 via the frontend?)
Sure, a very smart man has developed a nice solution to partially handle this in SCSM 2010. We’ve also got a pretty good background script that handles this challenge in our Altiris database. Neither completely manages the challenge, but they do help.
OK, I’m done. I’ll spend the next few weeks building on Anders’ process to handle emails without ticket ID’s in the subject. It won’t be elegant, but it’ll hold me over until a future release of SCSM includes this functionality (right Travis?).