How to Notify the Assigned to User when an Incident is Updated via the Exchange Connector

How to Notify the Assigned to User when an Incident is Updated via the Exchange Connector

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I’ve had this question come up a few times now, so to avoid repeating myself I’ll just blog about it! :)

Scenario: Affected user receives an email from the service desk requesting additional information.  The affected user replies to the email providing the additional information.  The Exchange connector picks up the email and updates the action log with the additional information.

Question:  How does the assigned to user get notified that the affected user has provided the required information?

Here’s how…

  1. Decide on some property or value that indicates the user has updated the incident.  For now let’s assume that we are going to add a new status called ‘Updated by Affected User’ as a sub status under Active.  Do this by editing the incident status list in the Lists view.  You could do other things like create your own custom property called ‘Updated by User’ or whatever.
  2. Create an incident template that sets that property from #1.  In this example the template would set the incident status to ‘Updated by Affected User’.  Hint: you can change the status in template mode using the ‘Change Incident Status’ task in the Tasks pane.
  3. In the Exchange connector properties dialog there is a place where you can choose which template to apply when an incident is being updated.  Select the template you created in #2.  Now  - whenever the incident is updated by the Exchange connector this template will also be applied which will change the status to ‘Updated by Affected User’.
  4. Create a notification template for this scenario if you haven’t already done so.
  5. Create an incident event workflow with the criteria: when incident status changes FROM not equal to ‘Updated by Affected User’ TO equal to ‘Updated by Affected User’.  Choose the notification template you created in #4 and the assigned to user.
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  • I did a blogpost regarding this a while ago. It's a little bit more detailed for those who needs that:

  • @Anders - Ah, that's right! :)  Could have saved myself a few minutes there by just linking to your blog.  If only I had a better memory... :)

  • Hi,

    Great post, thanks heaps.

    I wonder if you could answer a question for me. How can I configure SM to send an email to the new analyst when an incident gets reassigned (e.g. I have an incident assigned to me. I then assign the incident to Billy and I want him to receive an email letting him know the incident has been assigned to him)

    Many thanks in advance.


  • @JP - please see this blog post:

  • Travis, thanks for the great posts!  Is there a way to make the "Updated by Affected User" status or a custom property "Updated by Affect" reset/change after the notification is sent (or after "x" amount of time, say 1 minute).  Reason I ask is, if a user replies to a ticket multiples times, I will only be notified once.  For instance, say I have an incidient for a user that is having a sporadic problem. I use SendEmail to ask them to reply to this email when the issue happens again, they respond and say OK.  I get notified of that, now I am waiting for them to respond again, when they do, I never get notified. Is it possible to solve this issue?  Thx!

  • @bcehr - sure - in step #5 above just apply a template which sets the status of the activity back to Active or something so that when the user replies again and the Exchange connector applies the template from #1 the status will change from Active -> 'Updated by Affected User' which will trigger another notification to be sent.

  • Travis, that works great, thanks!  Also, is there anyway to include the e-mail from the user that the Exchange connector processed in the actual notification?  Thx again!

  • @bcehr - unfortunately, no it is not possible to include the original email message with the incident as an attachment.  It's a long story but the problem is that Exchange doesnt provide a web service API to do that and they won't be adding it either.

  • It's worth noting that using this configuration, if a user replies to a message regarding a Closed incident, it seems to re-open the incident. ITIL and MOF both seem to consider that a bad idea.

  • Good Day, can you help me please, I need to create a workflow to notify the next activity implementor in a change request, I try to do it but really I don´t know how to create this workflow. examples please. thks.

  • @Mario -

    The solution would be similar to this except you would do it for manual activity instead of review activity.

  • Hi Travis,

    is there a way to solve this problem using the built-in functionality SCSM 2012? Testing functionality SCSM2012RC we did not find this feature.

    Thank you.

  • Here is a built-in option, it will send a notificaiton any time an end-user comment is added, either from the Exchange connector or via the SMPortal: