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Plugin Review: WordPress Advanced Ticket System

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January 29th, 2010
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User Reviews

The other day, I had asked plugin developers to dish out their wish list for the plugin repository. Olivier published a comment recommending a plugin called WATS or WordPress Advanced Ticketing System as a way of handling support on your own website.

After installation, users need to visit the Wats Options page within the Settings menu to configure the plugin. The top of the settings page has a donate button if you want to send a little coin to the plugin author which is not intrusive or bothersome. While configuring the plugin, you can click on each menu title to show detailed information about that settings group.

The only problems I met when configuring this plugin is the user interface. Like I mentioned above, you can click on the settings title to show a hidden message that gives more details for the settings group but it’s not obvious this can be done. Also, while adding and editing the ticket priorities, I noticed that there is an icon to edit existing priority levels but the icon did not have a tool tip so it was not obvious that it was used to edit entries. Last but not least, the first button I see under the listings is REMOVE. The ADD button is further down below a status indicator. I think things could be rearranged to make a little more sense. For example, place the ADD, REMOVE buttons next to each other with a text field only appearing after the ADD button has been clicked. Directions for how to use this area of the configuration page also need to be added before this group of settings.

If you want to use WATS in conjunction with your main WordPress install, you can add new categories that can be configured to be open to submission. WATS has a front end ticket creation tool but the information for how to add this to a site was no where to be found until I browsed the plugin authors page. You can use the following shortcode to add the form to a page or post: [WATS_TICKET_SUBMIT_FORM].

Once I approved the ticket, I was able to login and view its status.

Overall, the plugin performed as expected. My only complaints lie in the user interface but those could be addressed in an update. For those looking for a ticketing system that bolts on easily to WordPress, this plugin looks like it could be what you’re looking for.

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  1. Anne (6 comments.) says:

    I like the idea of the ticketing system, whether for handling support on our site but, could be applied also as another communication system if one needed. My one question is; could each of the registered user have personal (individual/private) ticketing system available? It would work then as personal message (PM’s) each registered user could have on site. Thank you anyway!

  2. Olivier says:

    You have three settings for WATS tickets visibility :
    - all visitors can see all tickets
    - all registered connected users can see all tickets
    - only ticket originator and admins can see their tickets

    • Anne says:

      Great Olivier, thank you.

      Would that be too much coding to include also:

      - only ticket originator and a registered connected user to whom the ticket was sent can see the tickets

      Perhaps there could be also some feature preveledges for registered users according each of the roles they have given by the admin. E.g. number of tickets per day they can reply to or receive, a real good one would be also if a user could run a ticket with a couple or more people interested in same subject and they all would see/share replies of this particular ticket. Just an ideas.

      • Olivier says:

        This is mostly what the third option does. You also have the option to restrict the list of admins to whom a ticket can assigned to in WATS.

  3. Youseph Tanha (2 comments.) says:

    I would really like to see a ticketing system plugin for wordpress that would allow wordpress to function like Request Tracker.

  4. DavidONLINE (1 comments.) says:

    I would definitely be interested in using something like this, not only for my personal web blog but for my company website, both run on WordPress.

    I’m going to give this a try!

  5. Ed Cantarella (3 comments.) says:

    It works great except one thing – you could [accidentally] assign a ticket to the person who made it. That seems to me like the least wanted possibility in the real world. If the ticket originator/creator fills in a ticket with a question, why would you want to assign it to them? More likely possibility is a manager who has a pool of techs who handle various ticket issues. As the manager assigns them to techs, they wouldn’t want customer’s user names showing up in the list of people who can be assigned the ticket. Hopefully that is clear…trying to get the developer to tweak it a little. Very powerful but for that little glitch.

    • Ed Cantarella (3 comments.) says:

      AWESOME NEWS. I have paid the developer to tweak the code a little, creating slightly more specific assignment rules.

      For those wondering, the .mo/.po language files are fully accessible and with a little creative application this plugin can really rock.

      I am using it for an attorney-to-attorney referral system, where the referring attorney can check how his referrals are doing and print out a record of all referrals they make. The attorney that handles the new client shows up as “Handling Attorney” and they can leave notes, which are emailed(or not) to the referring attorney. And I have 7 different case “Status’” they can report. Sweet billing opportunity for me!

      WATS PREMIUM rocked for me.



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