Happy Dashboarding

Use Freshdesk as a data source

klipfolio - freshdesk

What is Freshdesk?

Freshdesk is a cloud-based customer support software application that allows you to combine tickets coming from traditional help desk channels with social channels like Facebook and Twitter. Even though this blog post is going to focus on how to use your Freshdesk data to build visualizations in Klipfolio, I wanted to note that I've been very impressed with Freshdesk in its own right.

Freshdesk: First impressions

The UI is intuitive, and it's ridiculously easy to get started. Within minutes I was able to integrate with my Facebook and Twitter profiles, and create multiple agents with discrete roles. I'm a fan of the gamification of customer service – and was even interviewed last year by Wired – as I think it's a great way to encourage your staff to be extra friendly and responsive. I was really impressed with the ability to customize your gamification options in Freshdesk since each organization will have different, unique service commitments.

Verdict: A breath of fresh air.

Connecting to Freshdesk

I'm only going to briefly cover connecting to Freshdesk. Please consult the following docs for more information:

Crafting your request

Freshdesk's RESTful API allows you to craft a GET request to retrieve data from your account. The API request is formatted as follows:

  • https://your_helpdesk_domain_name/resource_name

You can also craft a request directly from the "Tickets" section in your Freshdesk account. When you apply filters to your Tickets, you will be provided with the option to save that view. After you save that view, your address bar will refresh with a new URL. You can copy this URL and paste it into Klipfolio. Before processing your GET request, you will need to add a parameter to the URL that specifies the data format retrieved.

  • https://klipfolio.freshdesk.com/helpdesk/tickets/view/302494?format=json
klipfolio - freshdesk ticket view

Creating visualizations with Freshdesk

The real fun begins once you plug your data into the dashboard. My objective was to filter and sort tickets with drop-down menus to offer agents a clear view tickets in the queue. I'll walk you through the basics in a moment, but let's start by looking at the finished product:

klipfolio - fresh desk dashboard

Tickets by Category

This pie chart is combined with a drop-down menu to show a count of tickets sorted by different categories. I decided to work with 4 categories: Source, Priority, Agent, and Ticket Type. Here's how the pie chart looks with each of these categories selected:

klipfolio - tickets by source
klipfolio - tickets by priority
klipfolio - tickets by agent
klipfolio - tickets by agent


Here's a brief overview of how to build this Klip:

  • Create a variable that handles categories associated with your help desk and call it "category."
  • Insert logic into the Pie Chart that evaluates values based on what's selected in the drop-down menu. When the result is "true," all relevant values are counted.
  • Nest multiple IF functions together to account for all categories.
  • For labels, copy and paste the same logic, but change the Count function to a Group function.

Tip! Check out this tutorial: Working with variables and text fields to build a pie chart

Tickets by Priority

This table is combined with a drop-down menu to show pertinent information about tickets in your help desk's queue. I'm using the drop-down to sort through tickets based on priority, and have set up threshold indicators to highlight any tickets that are "Urgent" or "High" priority. Here's how the table appears with each priority level selected:

klipfolio - all priority levels
klipfolio - low priority tickets
klipfolio - medium priority tickets
klipfolio - high priority tickets
klipfolio - urgent priority tickets


Here's a brief overview of how to build this Klip:

  • Create a variable that handles different priority levels associated with your tickets and call it "priority."
  • Insert logic into the table that evaluates values based on what's selected in the drop-down menu. When the result is "true," all relevant values are displayed.
  • For indicators, set up a "hidden column" that contains the priority level associated with each ticket. Next, set up each column to change the background colour when the priority level contains "High" or "Urgent."

Freshdesk, playing nice with all your other data sources

What's the benefit of integrating Freshdesk with Klipfolio, you ask? For me, it boils down to the fact that you can view your Freshdesk data right beside all of your other pertinent data. A few weeks ago I wrote about the how data mashups can help expose relationships and correlations between different data sets. Freshdesk is no different, and plays well with other data sets.

You can, for example, integrate Freshdesk with your Google Analytics account and see how visits to your support site and knowledge base relate to submitted tickets. Or you could combine Freshdesk data with website monitoring tools, like Pingdom, to understand how application performance impacts help desk performance. Of course, thanks to Freshdesk's ability to integrate with Facebook and Twitter, you can also map social media interactions with help desk volume. The possibilities are almost endless, provided you're willing to ask the right questions.


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