GForge Advanced Server already provides your projects issue and bug tracking, wikis, live discussions, document management and source code management. Starting with the release of v6.3.0 we will leverage many of those pre-existing features in a way that provides all the tools you need to deliver outstanding support to your customers and stakeholders.
Before we dig into what sort of support features you can expect, let’s give a bit of a history lesson. To this point, we have been providing our customers support through an outdated system that no longer meets our needs. As we discussed what we needed out of a new support system it became obvious to us that, with just a few tweaks, nearly all those features already exist in GForge. Since that realization we have made most of the tweaks needed and in the coming weeks we will be migrating all of our existing tickets into GForge. So what does this mean for your projects?
Beginning with v6.3.0 we will introduce Support Trackers. Support Trackers work just like any other GForge Tracker but it includes the ability give your customers access to only their support tickets. Furthermore, customer groups can be created allowing all individuals belonging to a customer group access to all their organization’s support tickets. And we didn’t stop there. Support tickets can be created by simply sending an email to a preconfigured email address (e.g. email@example.com). All the subsequent interactions between a customer and your support team can happen via email or through the web interface.
Going forward, we also plan to expand the existing live discussion (chat) feature allowing you to, optionally, provide live chat-based support to your customers. This will include an HTML widget you can embed into your projects that allow customers to launch the support chat window from within your own web applications.
Support is a key success factor to any organization delivering products and services and we are excited that in our quest to itch our own scratch we were able to turn this into something all of our customers can benefit from. We’d love to hear what you think of this feature, if you would use it and to answer any questions you might have. Let us know what you think by posting a comment below or by sending email to firstname.lastname@example.org.