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Problems with a Custom Field in Service Manager


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Hi all, last week our Service Manager instance started doing a strange thing ... 

Custom field i is used for ticket logging and is mandatory. However, from Thursday [I think] email template that references the field has started displaying {{H_custom_i}} ... 

When I check the field is indeed blank. However, if I try re-adding the missing information and work through the BP, the field ends up empty again. 

We use copies of same PC/BP across several services. All appear to be affected and we haven't made any changes at our side!

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Hi @Alistair Young

Thanks for your post.

You mention that Custom Field I is mandatory.  There are a couple of ways that this field could be populated.  The first is that you are capturing this information in a customer Intelligent Capture form and you have the field mapped to the Custom Field I. The other way that you could be doing this is within the BPM you are using the Hornbill Automation for updating the request and populating the Custom Field I by taking the answers from your Intelligent Capture to update this field.

There is a lot that can go in within a BPM and it sounds like there may be an automation that is overwriting this field or the email is being sent out before the Custom Field  has been written to.  For example if you have the automation for updating the custom field immediately followed by the email being sent, there is a possibility that write hasn't completed before the email is sent.  If that's the case, try using the mapping so that the field is written to on creation of the record.

It is also possible that there are other things a play here, but without having access to your BPM it is difficult to say.  I find using a Custom Button with an Auto Task a great way to test and troubleshoot individual automations.  

 

 

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Hi @James Ainsworth, thanks for picking this up. 

The field is populated during progressive capture as part of the Change process. The field appears populated as expected when the change ticket comes in for approval. At some point in the approval stage the field becomes empty [you can see it doing this as the ticket moves through the change stages]; if I attempt to re-populate it, it becomes empty again as the ticket is approved and an email notification is generated. As you say, it appears that something is over-writing it but the reason I posted was because we've been using copies of the same PC/BP for quite some time across several different services - we haven't made any changes, especially not across each service in our catalogue - so I was wondering if there'd been a recent change at the Hornbill end that's causing the new behaviour. 

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Hi @Alistair Young

I can't see a reason why development would make a change that would empty a field.  I couldn't say for certain if something hasn't been changed that may cause this, but very unlikely.  Without seeing exactly how your Intelligent Capture and BPM are working, it would be difficult to say.  

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We've been doing some digging: there's been no changes to the PC and BPM we're using since 2019, but looks like the behaviour started following a Service Manager update on the 29th March - could be Unable to reset an attribute via 'Requests > Update Request > Custom Fields' Hornbill Automation. {PM00171556}

 

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For that to take affect, you would most likely need to have an Update Request Automation where this field is set to manual  (or possibly automatic) but a value has not been provided. This field should be set to Ignore, I believe.  Again, hard to say without seeing your workflow

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