Cases and Leads for Everyone! –Assignment and Escalation Rules

Escalation and Assignment rule — as far as I’m concerned these are such an obvious win!  Why wouldn’t I have Salesforce automatically assign and escalate records for me?!   

I’ve decided to combine these two because the steps to set them up are very similar and they are often used together with cases.  So, let’s take a look at what each is capable of, some things to consider when setting it up, and an example or two!

Assignment Rules

Assignment rules are used to assign cases and leads to the best suited users and/or queues based on a set of defined rules.

#1 A few things to consider before setting up an Assignment Rule

  • Like most of the process automation options thus far; you’ll want to make sure you’re considering all possible options.
  • Have a full understanding of the business process.
  • Define who the experts are in each scenario; this can be a user or a queue.
  • Should records be assigned to a specific user or a queue of users that can “claim” the record?
  • What email template will be used to notify the new record owner/queue when the record is re-assigned?  If the template hasn’t been created yet, you’ll want to create it before the Assignment Rule.
  • Create the rules and evaluate them prior to activation.
  • Use a sandbox to test the Assignment Rule before migrating it to a production environment.

#2 Steps to create an Assignment Rule

  1. Select the type of Assignment Rule you’d like to create; a Case Assignment Rule or a Lead Assignment Rule.  Click New and name the rule.  Decide if you’d like to trigger the assignment rule when a case is created manually or through the web.
  2. Create Rule Entries by clicking into the Assignment Rule that was just created.  A rule entry is the criteria that is used to assign the record to a user or a queue and the order it is evaluated in.  Below are the parts of a Rule Entry that you’ll want to consider. (see #3 for screenshots at each step)
    • Order – In what order should the Rule Entries be evaluated.  If there is only one it will have an order of 1.
    • Criteria – These are the criteria that must be true for the record to be assigned.  Criteria can be evaluated using a formula or filters based on the needs of your organization.
    • User – This specifies the user or queue that the record should be assigned to when the criteria evaluates to true.
    • Do Not Reassign – If this is checked the record cannot be assigned to its current owner.
    • Email Template – This is used to notify the new owner.
    • Assign Case Teams – Here is where you can assign and/or reassign predefined Case Team to work on the case.
  3. Click Save or Save and New.
  4. Repeat until all assignment rules are accounted for.

#3 Example : A web to lead case needs to be assigned to a specific queue based on the lead’s product interest.

This is a common use case for both Lead assignment and Case assignment.  Often times, sales or support teams are divided based on the products a company sells.  Below are the screenshots for this scenario based on the steps above.

Create the assignment Rule

assignment-1

Create a rule entry event for every scenario.

assignment-2

assignment-3

The final Web to Lead Assignment Rule.  Notice the third rule entry is blank and acts as a catch all for any web-to-leads that don’t fit the criteria in the first two rules, preventing it from going unassigned.

assignment-4

Escalation Rules

Escalation rules are used to escalate cases to another user or queue when a set period of time has passed without defined actions occurring.

#4 A few things to consider before setting up an Escalation Rule

  • Like most of the process automation options thus far; you’ll want to make sure you’re considering all possible options and have a full understanding of the business process.
  • Define who (a user or a queue) should handle escalations.
  • What email template will be used to notify the new record owner/queue when the record is escalated?  If the template hasn’t been created yet, you’ll want to create it before the Escalation Rule.
  • Create the rules and evaluate them prior to activation.  I highly recommend using a sandbox to test the Assignment Rule before migrating it to a production environment.

#5 Steps to create an Escalation Rule

The first of the steps below should look very similar to the steps for Assignment Rule creation.  See the screenshots in the example for visuals of each step below.

  1. Type Escalation Rule in the Quick Find search box of the setup section in Salesforce. And Save.
  2. Create new Rule Entries.  A rule entry is the criteria that is used to escalate the record to a user or a queue and the order it is evaluated in.  Below are the parts of a Rule Entry that you’ll want to consider. (see #3 for screenshots at each step)
    • Order – In what order should the Rule Entries be evaluated.  If there is only one it will have an order of 1.
    • Criteria – These are the criteria that must be true for the record to be assigned.  Criteria can be evaluated using a formula or filters based on the needs of your organization.
    • Specify Business Hours – Escalation actions run during the specified business hours.  You have three options here; ignore business hours, use hours specified on the case, or set business hours to select predefined business hours to apply.
    • Specify How Escalation Times are Set – Defines the way your Age Over (this is defined in a future step) field value is calculated.  It can be set in three ways:
      • A case was created
      • The case was created unless it has been modified; once modified, the case will never get escalated
      • The most recent time a case was modified
  3. Click Save or Save and New.
  4. Specify what action should be taken once the case meets the criteria by clicking Edit next to one of the rule entries.
  5. Click new to add an escalation action.  Each rule entry can have up to 5 actions and each action will need to have several items specified.
    • Age Over – Define the number of hours that should trigger the escalation.
    • Assign To – Specify the user or queue that the case should be assigned to after it is escalated.
    • Notification Template – Specify the template that will be sent to notify the new owner after escalation.
    • Notify this User – This is optional and allows an admin to notify another user when a case is escalated.
    • Notification Template – Select email template to send to the new owner of the case.
    • Additional Emails – Specify additional emails that should be notified when the case is escalated.
  6. Click Save.

#6 Example – Escalate a case based on its status.  If a case is classified as high priority and has not been modified for 2 business hours after case creation escalate the case to a Sr. Support Queue.

Keep in mind the order that Salesforce evaluates rules; Validation rules, Assignment rules, Auto-response rules, Workflow rules and then Escalation rules.  This order comes in very important when an organization has multiple different types of rules running.  As an administrator understanding this order of operations is important to avoid conflicts in an org.

See!  They’re awesome!  They save time in critical situations like customer care and lead assignment.  Just think about it; if the correct support or sales rep can help a customer sooner, how much happier would those customers be.

Visit Saasy5 on Pinterest, each blog will have a board with pins to the resources used to write the blog.  Here’s this week’s board.  Since the Salesforce world is HUGE let me know if I missed something that should have been pinned and I’d be happy to pin it.

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