03 Apr Escalation Rules – The Basics
I.T. based solutions and I.T. software in general came about as a need to automate tasks. It allows businesses to focus more on their business objectives and not worry about the system that supports it. Escalation Rules allows the creation of automated tasks from notifications, setting values on screen, sending emails given a particular criteria – tasks that users shouldn’t have to worry about in doing their job.
Services on CRM Server
Escalation Rules is a windows service that gets installed by default with Sage CRM. This service is responsible for running any enabled escalation rules that have been set up in CRM. But before we delve into how to create them we need to look at the logical components of an Escalation Rule to avoid issues later down the track. These components are as follows:
Criteria – defines the conditions of the Escalation Rule being triggered.
Control – this component ensures that the escalation rule doesn’t run forever (or if you want you can also make it run till the end of time!). This is especially crucial when setting up Escalation Rules that notify other users via email. Without the control component users can and will continue to receive emails until someone turns off the Escalation Rules Service.
Task – this component does the bulk of the work in an Escalation Rule whether it be sending emails, on-screen notifications or just changing a value on the screen.
Both the Criteria and the Control aspects of an Escalation Rule is used in tandem to create a SQL ‘WHERE’ clause
The task aspect is executed through a workflow action but without the use of a workflow. It follows the exact the same steps as to how a workflow action is created.
Let’s say as part of the business process a manager needs to be notified if a lead has a high chance of turning to an opportunity, better yet a client. In this situation we could automate this task by creating an Escalation Rule
- Ensure that the escalation service is running.
- Go to Administration > Advanced Customisations > Escalation and click on New on the top left side of the screen.
- Enter the table or entity that we want this rule to be applied for – in this case ‘Lead’
- Enter in Rule Name ‘Lead Notification’
- Enter in the Trigger SQL Clause Lead_Rating = ‘High’ and Lead_deleted is not null and Lead_notified is null.
This will ensure that it will only perform our task (sending an email) when
- The lead rating is set to High
- The lead hasn’t been deleted
- And the lead notified hasn’t been flagged
In this SQL clause the lead_rating and the lead_deleted acts as our criteria and the lead_notified (which is a custom field) acts as our control field.
The control works by ensuring not to send emails once it has been filled in with a value.
When you’re done entering the fields hit save.
Now that we have set up the rule itself we now need to add actions to this rule in our case we want an email and to modify our control field so as to not send infinite emails to the manager, which could have dear consequences.
Choose the new rule that you have created ‘Lead Notification’
- Scroll down at the bottom of the screen and hit ‘New’
- You will be presented to a screen with the possible workflow actions that we can do; for now choose ‘Send E-mail’
- Fill in the Details of the email by adding in the manager that needs to be notified and adding a message to the email. Make sure to fill in the ‘from’ field otherwise Exchange will not send the email out.
- Hit Save when you are finished.
- Now we have to create the second part of our control component for this escalation rule; again scroll down at the bottom of the screen and choose ‘New’
- Select the set Column Value action and choose the column ‘Lead_notified’
- Enter in the value ‘Yes’ in the value field
- Choose the Attribute as ‘Read-Only’
- Hit Save when you are satisfied.
Now we have our escalation rule! Make sure that the escalation rule is enabled otherwise it won’t run at all. Additionally I would advise to test this out so that your poor manager doesn’t get a billion emails about Leads with a High rating, we wouldn’t want him to give him false hope!