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Managing categories

Categories enable you to classify the data that you want to group or track in your organization. You can organize your categories by using category types and defining parent and child relationships between categories. You can also restrict the availability of categories to only specific modules.

The following topics are provided:

Note

For troubleshooting tips that you can use to resolve issues that you might face when managing categories, see Troubleshooting issues when managing categories.

Restricting categories based on modules

To classify different types of data in your organization, you can create a large number of categories. If all these categories are displayed across all modules, users might find it difficult to identify and select the appropriate category while creating records.

To facilitate category selection, you can restrict the availability of categories based on specific modules. Restriction of categories based on modules enables the creation of category trees that are specific to each module. When users create records of a module, the category tree displays only a limited set of supported categories for that module.

The following figure shows an example of the category tree for service requests in Self Service.

Consider the following points about category restriction:

  • You can restrict the availability of categories to the following modules:
    • Incidents
    • Service Requests
    • Tasks
    • Problems
    • Change Requests
    • Releases
    • Broadcasts
    When users create a knowledge article from a record in the Remedyforce Console, the knowledge article inherits the category of the record. Therefore, category restriction is not available for knowledge articles. All active categories are also available while creating a knowledge article on the Knowledge Articles tab.
  • Category restriction is applied only in the Template and Request Definition forms, Remedyforce Console, and Self Service. For the Incidents module, category restriction is also applied when creating records on the Incidents tab (Salesforce page layout).
  • On the Request Definition form and in Self Service (Service Request form and the category tree for service requests), only service request categories are shown. However, incident categories are also shown if they are the parent categories of service request categories.
  • Before creating categories, BMC recommends that you identify the categories that you want to restrict to specific modules. However, you can create categories for future use without selecting any module. Until you select appropriate modules for such categories, they are not available to users in the Template and Request Definition forms, Remedyforce Console, and Self Service.
  • You can change the modules to which an existing category is restricted. For records created before this change, the Category field value is retained.
  • In the Remedyforce Console, on the Record Details section of a record, users can click the Create and Link <module> to <module> button (for example, Create and Link Task to Incident) to create and link a record of another module. The newly created record of another module inherits the category of the original record to which it is linked only if that category is restricted to both modules.

    For example, say a staff member creates and links a task from an incident that is assigned to the Hardware category. The new task is created with the Hardware category only if this category is restricted to both the Incidents and Tasks modules. However, if the Hardware category is restricted only to the Incidents module, the task is created with a blank category.

    Note

    The only exception to this behavior is when you create and link an incident from a broadcast record. In this case, the category from the broadcast record is always populated in the newly created and linked incident.

Displaying categories in Self Service

You can use categories to organize knowledge articles and services in Self Service. The category tree enables users to easily browse service requests and knowledge articles. You can also define the categories that are available for submitting a ticket or service request in Self Service.

To display a category in Self Service, you must select the Display in Self Service check box for that category. Consider the following points about the Display in Self Service check box on the Category form:

  • This check box is automatically selected when you select the Service Requests check box for a category.
  • Both parent and child categories must be displayed in Self Service to successfully create the category tree.
    • If the Display in Self Service check box is selected for child categories of a category, you cannot clear this check box for the parent category.
    • If you select the Display in Self Service check box for a category and save the category, this check box is automatically selected for the parent categories of the category.
  • Based on the Self Service forms in which you want to display a category, you must select additional check boxes. The following table lists the check boxes that you must select based on your goals. (Blank cells indicate that the check box is not selected.)

    GoalCheck boxes on the Category form
    Display in Self ServiceIncidentsService Requests

    To make a category available only in the Ticket form in Self Service.

    (tick)(tick) 

    To make a category available only in the Service Request form and in the category tree for service requests in Self Service.

    (tick) (tick)

    To make a category available only in the category tree for knowledge articles in Self Service.

    (tick)  

    To make a category available in the Ticket form, Service Request form, and the category tree in Self Service.

    (tick)(tick)(tick)

Note

You can also enable categories for Self Service and Remedyforce Chat from the Manage Categories tab. For more information, see Managing categories for Self Service and Remedyforce Chat.

To create or edit a category

Before creating categories, plan the categories that you require for each module so that the data in your organization is classified consistently .

  1. Click the Remedyforce Administration tab.
  2. On the Home page, click the Configure Application tile, and from the menu select Category.
    If you access the Category option from the Configure Self Service tile, only those categories that can be shown in Self Service are listed.
  3. Perform one of the following actions:
    • To create a new category, click New .
    • From the Categories list view, select the category that you want to edit.
  4. On the Category form, enter the following details and click Save

    FieldDetails
    Category

    All top-level category names must be unique.

    BMC also recommends that category names within the same tree hierarchy should be unique.

    Abbreviation

    Type a short label for the category.

    Using this short label for categories in a chart or report enables you to display more data in the chart or report.

    Category Type

    Select the type of category.

    For information about creating category types to group related categories, see Creating category type records.

    Parent Category

    Assigning a parent category to a category creates the category tree.

    BMC recommends that you assign a parent category that is restricted to the same module as the current category. For example, if you select the Incidents check box for a category in the Applies To section, assign a parent category for which the Incidents check box is selected.

    Notes:

    • If a category is restricted to a specific module but its parent or super parent categories are not restricted to that same module, the category is not listed in the category lookup window or category tree.
    • If a parent category is restricted to multiple modules, then its child categories can be restricted to any one of those modules. For example, if you select the Incidents, Service Requests, and Tasks check boxes for a category in the Applies To section, its child categories can be restricted to only incidents, only service requests, or only tasks.
    Category Description

    Type a description of the category.

    When users move their mouse over a category in the category tree, this text is displayed as a tooltip. The category tree is available in the Remedyforce Console, Self Service 2.0, and the Salesforce page layout.

    Applies To

    In this section, perform the following actions:

    If you create a category without selecting any module, the category is not available to users in the Template and Request Definition forms, Remedyforce Console, and Self Service.

    Notes:

    • Broadcasts are often created to communicate messages about a common issue for which multiple users might have submitted incidents. Therefore, BMC recommends that when you restrict a category for the Incidents module, you also restrict that same category for the Broadcasts module, and vice versa.
    • If a category is restricted only for Incidents or only for service requests, you are able to use it for both, incidents and service requests.
    Incident Handling Information

    In this section, enter the following information based on your requirements:

    • Follow Up: To configure follow-up for closed incidents to which this category is assigned, select this check box.
    • After Hours: Type the number of hours after an incident is closed when the follow-up should begin. This information is added to the closing data of the incident.
    • Urgency: Select the urgency that you want to assign when an incident is created with this category. You can assign an urgency level depending on the importance of the category.

After you have created a category, you can also create child categories. For more information, see  To create or edit a child category.

You can also standardize the Description field value in records to which this category is assigned. For more information, see To add a standard description to a category.

To create or edit a child category

  1. From the Categories list view, open the category for which you want to create child categories.
  2. On the Category form, in the Supporting Information section, click the Child Categories tab.
  3. On the Child Categories tab, perform one of the following actions:
    • To create a new child category, click Actions and then click Add.
    • From the list of child categories, select the category that you want to edit, click Actions and then click Edit.
  4. On the Category form, enter details about the child category and click Save.
    When you reopen the parent category, this child category is displayed on the Child Categories tab.

To add a standard description to a category

To facilitate quicker creation of records, you can create standard descriptions for each category. You can specify if the standard description of the category must be populated in the Description field of the records to which this category is assigned.

  1. From the Categories list view, open the category for which you want to create a standard description.
  2. On the Category form, in the Supporting Information section, click the Standard Descriptions tab.
  3. On the Standard Descriptions tab, click Actions and then click Add.
  4. On the Standard Description form, create the standard description that you want to add to this category.
    For more information, see Creating standard descriptions.

To inactivate or delete a category

Based on your requirements, you can either inactivate or delete a category that is longer used in your company. To perform either action, you must navigate to Remedyforce Administration > Configure Application > Category.

GoalAction to be performed

Prevent users from applying a category to records but retain all existing references to that category.

Records marked as inactive are not included in any search performed on the database.

From the categories list, open a category, select the Inactive check box, and click Save .

Delete a category from BMC Remedyforce.

In this case, all references to the category in existing records are also deleted.

From the categories list, select a category and click Delete .

Related topics

Managing categories for Self Service and Remedyforce Chat

Configuring suggested owners

Managing service request definitions

Managing templates

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