Freshdesk Sandbox: Making Change Simple

You might be familiar with some of the changes Freshworks has gone through in the last year. We rebranded the company1, introduced new products, and gave Freshdesk a new look2. Although these developments have been a delight to our customers, we’ll be honest, the journey didn’t start easy for one team in particular within the company. Our customer support team.

At Freshworks, we use a single Freshdesk account to support customers using our seven different products. With every new product launch, campaign, or internal team structure change, the project managers for our Freshdesk account got increasing requests from different teams to introduce and change workflows configured in the account. Over the last year, we added four new products, configured 12 new support email addresses, changed over 70 automation rules and supported 70,000 more customers.

Considering that our Freshdesk account supports over 150,000 companies and has workflows configured for 16 different teams, every change on our Freshdesk account was a task that required careful planning and execution to ensure existing workflows aren’t affected. Afterall, it was our customers’ experiences and business integrity at stake.

In the last few months though, introducing changes has been a walk in the park for the team. We’ve been using a new feature that our product team has been working on — Freshdesk Sandbox.

Freshdesk Sandbox was built to make change easy not just for Freshworks but also for all our  enterprise customers who use complex workflows for their support functions.

What is a Sandbox? How does it work?

Imagine that you have to edit a status update that you posted on Facebook. Facebook creates a copy of the post for you to edit, while your original post remains. Once you’re done making changes and you’re satisfied with how it appears, you can publish the post’s draft copy.  A sandbox environment is similar to that copy of your Facebook post.

Freshdesk’s Sandbox allows you to create a replica of your live Freshdesk account. It is used for testing, as any modifications you make in the Sandbox does not affect your Freshdesk account. Once you’re confident that your tests work as expected, you can then implement the changes in your live Freshdesk account. Admins can test any new workflow or change they’d like to make, without affecting the configurations in the live account.

Although making a change became less concerning with the Sandbox, we realized that this model solved only half the problem —  modifying workflows was time consuming. The changes made on the sandbox needed to be copied and recreated onto our live account.

To give you an example, when we introduced our most recent product Freshmarketer, we had to add new support email addresses, social media channels, ticket fields, groups, agent skills, email notifications, and rules to automate all workflows. The team tested the changes on Freshdesk Sandbox and made modifications based on the results until they were confident of the workflows that would need to be introduced to our live account.

Now imagine the team having to document every modification they had made on the Sandbox and carefully replicate them in our live Freshdesk account. Implementation would have taken more time and the team would’ve had to have spend their efforts in mundane copy work. Despite foolproof Sandbox tests results, a simple human error of copying the changes from the Sandbox could cause the entire implementation to fail.

In order to overcome this difficulty, we made made an enhancement to the feature. With Freshdesk’s advanced Sandbox, once you’re confident with your testing, all you’ll need to do is click a button.  The changes you’ve made in the Sandbox get copied to your live account. Yes, it’s as simple as that.

Like us, you may have developments in your organization that would call for a change in how your customer support works. As your helpdesk reflects your way of working, it’s important that it is able to adapt to these changes swiftly. Regardless of the scale of the change required, it’s now foolproof and easy with Freshdesk Sandbox.

If you’re using Freshdesk, check out how the Sandbox can help you. If not, you can sign up for a free trial to see for yourself how Freshdesk can take your customer support up to the next level.

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