This article runs through how to setup a basic timer in the SweetHawk timers app

Questions answered in this article are: 

What is a timer definition? 

How do I create a timer definition? 

How do I automatically start and stop a timer? 

What other types of things can I do with timer definitions? 



What is a timer definition? 

A "timer definition" is a set of parameters that determine how a particular timer functions within the flow of a Zendesk ticket.

For instance, a timer definition would specify the length of time for the timer (e.g., 4 hours for a high priority ticket response time), any actions associated with the timer events (such as when the timer starts, stops, or ends), and any conditions that need to be met for the timer to run.

By creating various timer definitions, you can build complex and flexible workflows that cater to the specific needs of your customer service process. You can create timers for different priorities, service level agreements (SLAs), operational level agreements (OLAs), and more, each with its own unique properties and actions based on timer events. This feature of the Timers App significantly enhances the ability of support teams to effectively manage and track time-sensitive tasks and commitments.



How do I create a timer definition? 

To create a timer in the Timers app, first click in the admin icon in the main left bar. Then under Timer definitions, click on Add definition


Next, complete the following fields: 

Name: Select a name which clearly identifies this timer to other admins. 

Description:  Describe what this timer is going to be measuring and the workflow that it is part of.

Duration: Set the duration of the timer. 

Schedule: If you want the timer to only run on specific days, or certain times of the day (eg. business hours 9am - 5pm) then you can select the schedule that you want it to run on. See this article for more on how to create schedules

Permission: This field will allow you to choose who can add this timer to a ticket manually. It also controls who has access to edit or delete the timer from a ticket once it has been added. Note that this field is based on a minimum user level. For example if you select Managers, then only managers and above will have access to manually control timers (ie. Managers and Admins). However if you select Agents, then all agent roles will have access to manually control this timer.  

On-time color: Set the colour of the timer on the ticket when the time elapsed is less than the duration. 


Over-time color: The colour of the timer on the ticket when the time elapsed is more than the duration. 


Ticket updates: With ticket updates you can set anything to happen to the ticket when the duration of the timer either starts, stops or ends. For example, if the duration were to end for a First Response SLA timer, then this would be a bad thing, so you might choose to add a comment to the ticket noting the SLA has been breached or add a tag to the ticket for reporting. See this article and video for more information on Starting, Stopping and Ending timers.

You can also set updates to take place on the ticket at any time relative to when the timer duration is due to end. This can be handy if you want to give your team a half hour warning.


Once you have set all of the timer definition parameters, click Save at the bottom right hand side of the screen. 


How do I automatically start and stop a timer? 

You can automatically start and stop your timers by creating triggers that check for the specific ticket conditions as to when you want this to happen. 

To create a trigger for starting and stopping, in the main list of timer definitions, click on Create trigger under either the Start or Stop columns like this: 


Once you click on one of these items, a link to the new trigger will appear at the top right of the screen. Click into the new trigger and set the conditions as desired and save. 


What other types of things can I do with Timer definitions? 

Timer definitions are built in a way that makes them extremely flexible and can cater for different scenarios where time is involved. Here are a few other articles that explain more about what is possible:

How to create a timer that reminds me to follow-up with a client.

Measuring & reporting on the total & average times of a repeating timer.

Recording timer information in Zendesk ticket fields.

Building report in Explore based on timer information.



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