6 Replies Latest reply on Jun 19, 2020 11:59 AM by Richard Rowe

    Facilities Managment > Categories

    Mary Remter
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      Hello,

      Our organization is a non-profit that consists of 28 resale stores (donated items) throughout Wisconsin. We (HR, Facilities Management, and IT) are upgrading our Track-It! to the new 20.20 version and I'd like to redefine our categories.

       

      In our current version we of course have Type >Sub-Type>Category, but I understand after we upgrade we will have a "Category Tree"

       

      Does anyone have any advice or "lessons learned" about categories?  I tried to find previous threads.. but maybe I'm searching wrong.

       

      Thanks in advance!

      Mary

       

      Message was edited by: Mary Remter UPDATE - found a bunch of great links, but still interested in advice if you have it!

        • 1. Re: Facilities Managment > Categories
          Eric Liszt

          Hi Mary,

           

          Years ago I was an on-site consultant who would help folks like you set up these things.   I think the most important lesson learned across dozens of customers from tiny to huge are

          1. Keep it Simple.
          2. Keep it Simple
          3. Keep it Simple
          4. Think about what reporting you really must have and then go back to #1.

           

          So many customers felt that they needed far more detailed reporting than they actually ever used.  As such, they would be inclined to create category trees with too many layers and too much detail.   This resulted in it being complex for the technician to find the right category as the log/edit the case.  When this happens, the first thing is they end up wasting time.  The next thing is they get frustrated and bad-mouth the system, and then the finally just start entering the closest thing they can quickly find in the categorization structure (this is true of trees, lists, or other multi-category systems).   So keep it simple.  You can always add more detail as you need it.   Try to keep it to no more than 2-3 levels deep if at all possible.

           

          I hope that helps and I hope other folks will chime in with their experiences.

           

          Eric

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          • 2. Re: Facilities Managment > Categories
            Ken Soszka

            I agree 100% with Eric. Keep it simple, it's much easier to add-on as you go than it is to undo categories that you didn't need, and the tickets that may already be associated with them.

             

            As a Track-It! consultant and former Tech Support Team Lead for BMC, I've seen too many cases where somebody sat down and tried to figure out every possible thing related to the organization that they could make a category for. You end up with the situation that Eric describes above, for not only Technicians but end users too, in some cases.

             

            In my opinion, there are only two reasons that you need a category. Reporting like we are talking about is one. The other is for ticket routing. You may have certain groups or individuals that handle tickets in a certain category. You might already have that category for reporting, but if not then ticket routing would be a valid reason to add a category.

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            • 3. Re: Facilities Managment > Categories
              Mary Remter

              Thank you very much - I think where I'm struggling is understanding the difference between "Groups" and "Categories"

              Or, maybe they can be the same?

               

              The ticketing system will be used by  three business areas within the organization (HR, IT and FM).

              I thought that would mean these (HR, IT, FM) would be "Groups", and I would have "Categories" pertaining to each of these business areas "underneath them".

               

              But now I'm wondering if my Groups and Categories should both be named HR, IT and FM and then have sub categories underneath each of them.

              - If so, would the end user be able to see all the subcategories for each of the three (HR,IT and FM) groups/categories?

              Or, would the end user only be able to see the subcategories for their category?

               

              I'm probably way over thinking this

              • 4. Re: Facilities Managment > Categories
                Cris Coffey

                Agree with the previous posters. It is easy to add new categories as you need but hard to remove/reorganize when you end up with too many.  Groups are security groups so you would have a different group for each of your functional areas mentioned. The categories are shared but you could have top level categories matching the groups and then the categories specific to those groups underneath each one.

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                • 5. Re: Facilities Managment > Categories
                  Ken Soszka

                  Regarding Categories and Groups, as Cris said you could have top level categories matching the groups, and then the categories specific to those groups underneath each one.

                   

                  There are also ways to filter which categories are visible to a group based on which ticket form that group is using, and each group can have it's own customized ticket form. One of the nice features in version 20.x!

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                  • 6. Re: Facilities Managment > Categories
                    Richard Rowe

                    Hi Mary

                     

                    You've got some great answers from above.

                     

                    As Ken mentions, I concur in that categorise to assign calls to particular groups and/or technicians. If it is for this purpose, ideally try and skill route at the higher level, and against teams if possible. And when it comes to reporting purposes, ensure you work backwards. Qualify what daily/weekly/monthly reports are needed and why, then you can ensure that you not overdoing fields and values for the sake of it.

                     

                    Keep it simple like Eric and the team insist. If you have a handful, then you can always add a value "other". By doing this, you can look at a monthly report where a technician has selected "other" and then revisit the tickets and either correctly categorise them, or discuss whether there is justification to add a new value to the mix.

                     

                    Lock out to ensure others cannot keep adding more and more values, as you'll end up with a huge administration overhead.

                     

                    You should definitely explore creating groups for your business functions, and then utilise the Form Designer so each function has the form working to the way they need to log tickets with the filters and custom fields.

                     

                    The filters should eliminate the need to add categories for IT, HR and FM.

                     

                    Good luck

                     

                    Ricky