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Do not use K5... if you need this

Discussion in 'Upgrading to the new Kayako' started by smartohana, Oct 1, 2016.

  1. smartohana

    smartohana Member

    First - I want to preface this that, like many here, I've historically been a fan of K for some time. Having said that, I would also state the new K5 has been disappointing to ME. Certainly there are many pieces of missing functionality and buggy features I could cover, but what's MOST disappointing to me are some key BASIC functionality that EVERY HelpDesk solution MUST have, and my findings are these things simply do not work properly in K5.

    IMHO, a HelpDesk at it's core is simply an enhanced EMail client. Basic functionality requires every HelpDesk solution be able to receive and send email to people writing in. As such, the HelpDesk must support the 5 basic features I can get in any email service: Receive Email, Reply, Reply All, Forward, and Send New Message.

    Let's look at each of these closer as they existing today within K5:

    Receive Mail... This sounds like a pretty straight forward requirement and on the surface it appears K5 checks this box. But receiving mail can be far more complex. To do this properly, you must fully support the full suite of standard Email Headers such as From, To, Reply-To, Sender, On-Behalf-Of, and CC. You must account for email authentication standards such as DKIM, SPF and DMARC and their affect on those email headers. Here lies where K5 falls short, and it may result in emails either never coming into your HC, or arriving in a manner that will not allow you to respond.

    For example: I suspect like many, we use a standard alias of "support@company.com" which forwards mail to our K5 instance. In our case, our support@company.com alias is actually a Google Group within Google Apps. Mail is sent to the support@company.com alias, which is actually a Google group distribution list, which forwards the mail onto everyone on the distribution list including our Kayako support inbox email address (support@company.kayako.com).

    But this configuration results in a serious problem when a user sends email from a email service like Yahoo or AOL that enforces DMARC. In these cases, Google rewrites the FROM address to be FROM:"support@company.com" and Adds a Reply-To of "user@yahoo.com". The technical details are explain here.
    http://www.spamresource.com/2014/04/google-groups-rewriting-from-addresses.html

    After the header rewrite, the email is now FROM: support@company.com, being sent TO: support@company.com. Kayako doesn't like this (From: matches Inbox rule) and puts the email in the Suspended Messages view rather than the Support queue. Even manually moving the messages out of the Suspended Messages view doesn't fix the problem, as K5 doesn't honor the Reply-To. Instead the response goes to the FROM: support@company.com.... which means you are unable to respond to the customer.

    (Fortunately, I am able to workaround this problem through Zapier....)

    This takes us to Reply and Reply All...

    As I mentioned, Kayako doesn't support the Reply-To header as most email clients would, thus you may be incorrectly replying to the wrong address. But there's still more problems.

    The agent interface has a very clear Reply link... but note... this is for Reply only... not Reply All. Clicking the Reply link will absolutely exclude any recipients listed as CC: on the original message... OK... fair enough... it does say Reply and not Reply-All. Perhaps not the most intuitive thing, but would it be so difficult to also include a Reply-All link as well?

    But worse yet, the Reply link ONLY sends to the Requester... who is not necessarily the last person to respond on the case and whom you may have intended to reply to.

    If you wish to Reply To All, you must click on the less intuitive Reply-All arrow present on each individual response. This will start a Reply... to the Requester... and include everyone on the CC list of the response you selected. BUT WAIT... EVEN THIS DOESN'T WORK PROPERLY.

    Let's say you had a case from Requester Snow White, who also CC'd Doc and Happy. Happy then adds to the thread with his own response. You wish to reply to everyone based upon Happy's response so you click the Reply-All arrow on Happy's Response. K5 sends creates a Reply to the Requester (Snow White), and includes on the CC those who were CC'd on Happy's response.... only Doc. Since Happy obviously wasn't CC'd on his own message, Happy will be excluded when clicking Reply-All... and will be no longer happy. Basic, basic functionality.

    (The workaround is: you have to be aware this can occur and add people manually to the CC if necessary)

    This leads us to Forward and Send New...

    Talking about Forward functionality within K5 is easy... It doesn't exist. It was there is K4, but no longer in K5.... nuff said.

    As for Send New... you can create a new case to a Requester... but the Requester must already exist as a user in your system. What a pain! (Interestingly, this is not a requirement when adding someone to the CC. Thankfully, CC recipients do not have to be existing users in the system).


    So there you have it... my $0.02 and recommendation that if you need this type of basic email functionality... You are best waiting until they are added/fixed.

    I have every faith K will address these and other concerns. I still believe in the vision. But to me, these are basic, no-brainer... cannot ship types of issues, some of which I've reported a while back... still waiting for a fix... and with each passing day, so weakens my resolve.
     
  2. masterctrl1

    masterctrl1 Kayako Guru

    I understand how the issues mentioned apply in your case, but I don't think most help desks use a group distribution list in that manner.
    Wouldn't it be easier to have one address forwarded to Kayako which applies to all operators by group? Plus an option to notify specific operators based on rules you define.
     
  3. smartohana

    smartohana Member

    Perhaps... "easier" is a relative term... and it's impossible to assume every customer's situation. Which is why we have standards and the bottom line is... K5 does NOT currently properly support standard email headers such as From, To, Reply-To, Sender, On-Behalf-Of, and CC (as K4 did). If it did support these email headers properly, the scenario I described would not be an issue. It would be my opinion that any Helpdesk solution worth using should properly support these standard email headers.

    But I would also like to indicate... my biggest issue above is how replies are lost, and remains open today...

    "Let's say you had a case from Requester Snow White, who also CC'd Doc and Happy. Happy then adds to the thread with his own response. You wish to reply to everyone based upon Happy's response so you click the Reply-All arrow on Happy's Response. K5 sends creates a Reply to the Requester (Snow White), and includes on the CC those who were CC'd on Happy's response.... only Doc. Since Happy obviously wasn't CC'd on his own message, Happy will be excluded when clicking Reply-All... and will be no longer happy. Basic, basic functionality."

    A day doesn't go by when an email is forwarded into support from SALES, with a CC: to CUSTOMER. As part of the case history, the CUSTOMER adds their own response onto the case. If support then replies to the ticket on the CUSTOMER'S response, the response WILL NOT be sent to the CUSTOMER. I've lost how many times customers have complained... "Why haven't you gotten back to me yet????", only to see we did respond, but Kayako failed to send the response to the CUSTOMER. Unacceptable.
     
  4. Gary McGrath

    Gary McGrath Staff Member

    Just wanted to update on the problems with email flow for specifics mentioned above are being looked into ( I raised a case for this with our product team )

    Gary
     
  5. smartohana

    smartohana Member

    Gary...

    It's been two+ months since I raised this issue directly with Kayako Support... nearly two months since I posted here... and nearly 1 month since you provided your update... and the problem where Kayako fails to send responses to the correct recipients when using the REPLY-TO-ALL remains an open issue.

    Perhaps I've overestimated the impact of this issue.

    I would have thought many customers would have complained, including your own support team, and clamouring for this issue to be fixed in short, short order. From my perspective, the fact that end-customers are missing support responses intended for them would be a critical issue and a P1 bug. I've been forced to handle a number of critical escalations since upgrading to K5 because customers were left wondering "WTF? Why haven't we responded to them," when in truth we did, but the customer we were attempting to respond to had been left off of our reply.

    But given the length if time this issue has gone unresolved, perhaps I am isolated in my perspective. Perhaps others have not voiced this as an issue, nor felt the impact was significant to demand an immediate change. And if true, I would be the first to state, this should not be something to focus limited resources on.

    But if this is truly the case, and resolving this bug is not a critical priority that will be resolved quickly, I would appreciate an update. I understand companies must always make trade off decisions, given limited resources. And I would simply like to know where this issue truly stands in the priority of things that will get addressed so I may make an informed decision as to using the right tool that meets my specific business needs.

    Thank you.
     
  6. Gary McGrath

    Gary McGrath Staff Member

    We have not had any other customers directly complain about the above problems, but we do believe and agree it needs addressing, we have a number of email handling improves which are being worked on together and this is in the list with them. I don't have any ETA on it I'm afraid, but I will chase up the engineering team to see if I can find out more information for you.

    Gary
     

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