Thursday, September 6, 2012

Mashing up Freshdesk with KooKoo for customer support ticket management

Sorry for the delay in writing a blog post. I have been caught up in too many things since last month(we are growing, so its all good :))

Anyway, this week I thought I will look at how we can use the latest rockstar startup from India, Freshdesk. Freshdesk, as most of you know is one of the best "Social Helpdesk" systems out there. I am sure most of you are already using Freshdesk to support your customers.

In this blogpost I will explain how you can add telephony to the mixture. In particular I will show some code which you can use to :

  1. Welcome the caller by name
  2. Ask him to enter his ticket id
  3. Play out the ticket status
  4. Connect the caller to the correct agent handling the ticket.
Luckily for us, Freshdesk has a very well defined API and it was a pleasure to work with it. The engineers were also very supportive and answered all my queries quickly.

So lets get into the code directly.

1. First we need to get the caller information. For this we need to access the contacts.xml endpoint of your Freshdesk with your credentials. So, if your Freshdesk system is at http://yourcompany.freshdesk.com, then your contacts will be at http://yourcompany.freshdesk.com/contacts.xml. 

This will return all your contacts and you can loop through the contacts, fetch their phone number and compare it with the caller id that KooKoo sends you. If a contact matches, return his/her id else return -1.

<code>
function get_user($phone_no)
{
$phone_no = substr($phone_no, -10);
$return = get_curl('http://yourcompany.freshdesk.com/contacts.xml');
$users = new SimpleXMLElement($return);
        //looping through users
       foreach($users->user as $user){
        //compare last 10 digits of the phone number
if($substr(user->mobile,-10) == $phone_no)
return $user->id;
        }
        return -1;
}
</code>

Using the user details and the <playtext> tag of KooKoo you can play out a customized welcome message to the caller.

2. Then use <collectdtmf> and ask the user to enter his ticket id.

3. Once you receive the ticket id from KooKoo, use the tickets.xml endpoint of Freshdesk API to get the ticket details in XML.
Below code, gets ticket and associated agent. The associated agent is returned in the responder-id details.
<code>
function get_agent_phone($ticket_id)
{
        $return = get_curl('http://kookoo.freshdesk.com/helpdesk/tickets/'.$ticket_id.'.xml');
        $ticket = new SimpleXMLElement($return);
        $responder=$ticket->{'responder-id'};
        $return=get_curl('http://kookoo.freshdesk.com/contacts/'.$responder.'.xml');
        $agent=new SimpleXMLElement($return);
        $agent_no=$agent->{'phone'};
        if($agent_no)
    return $agent_no;
       else
    return '-1';
}
</code>

4. Use the ticket details and either use <playtext> to play the details and disconnect the caller or connect the caller to the agent managing the ticket.

The complete code can be downloaded. To use it:
  1. Sign up for a KooKoo account.
  2. Sign up for a Freshdesk account
  3. Update the code to include your credentials.
  4. Host the code in a public location and assign it as a KooKoo URL in your KooKoo settings.
  5. Publish your KooKoo number and start receiving calls.
As usual, this is just the tip of the iceberg. Once you get started on this, you can do a lot more things like, adding customer calls automatically as tickets, handle high priority customers etc.