Managing Fields - Online Help | Zoho Desk

Managing Help Desk Fields

Various fields are used to capture the information in Zoho Desk. As they are an essential part of modules, there are different types of fields, with a variety of settings and security permissions that you can apply. By default, Zoho Desk provides some standard fields and allows adding more industry-specific fields as well. Each department can have its own layout that includes both standard and custom fields. Let's take a look at each type of field and its properties here.

Standard Fields
The standard fields in each module can be displayed or hidden as per the organization's requirement. Note that the mandatory fields (system-defined), such as Departments and Contact Name, cannot be edited or deleted. Additionally, changes made to the standard fields of a layout are applicable across the organization.

Custom Fields
In addition to the standard fields available in each module, Zoho Desk provides the flexibility to add more industry-specific custom fields, such as string, decimal, integer, currency, and checkbox type of fields. For example, you can add a custom field called Referred By to track who referred a customer to you. Note that these custom fields are specific to the department in which they are created. You can add fields in the following modules: Contracts, Time Entry, Agents, Tickets, Contacts, Accounts, Products, Calls, Tasks, and Events.

Viewing Fields List

While it is easy to add many custom fields that you may require for your business, it can quickly turn overwhelming if you are not able to keep track of them. Keeping that in mind, the Fields section under Setup provides a consolidated view of all the fields from the selected module, along with the relevant details and setting for the same. This includes the data type of the field (string, date, integer, etc.), API name, and the layout that uses the field.

To view the list of fields
  1. In your Zoho Desk portal, go to Setup ( ).
  2. Under Customization, select Layout and Fields.
  3. Click Fields List under the Layouts and Fields sub-menu.
  4. Select the desired module from the Module drop-down list at the top of the page.
    All the fields that belong to the selected module will be listed in alphabetical order. You will be able to see the following:
    1. Field Name, Data Type, API Name columns with details.
    2. See layouts that use this field link. Note that the layouts that have the field in their Unused Fields section will not be displayed here.
    3. All the custom fields marked by this icon next to it.
  5. Enter characters in the Search text box to filter out a particular field or all fields of a certain data type from the long list.

Setting up Field Permissions

Data security is one of the most sought-after features in a help desk software. Given that you handle sensitive business information of your own company and that of your customers, you can choose to restrict access to specific fields within a module for agents. For example, when your Contact module includes sensitive information like your customers' bank account details you can hide these fields for specific profiles. Alternatively, when you do not want users to modify the information, you can simply give read-only access.

To manage field permissions
  1. In your Zoho Desk portal, go to Setup ( ).
  2. Under Customization, select Layout and Fields.
  3. Click Fields Permissions under the Layouts and Fields sub-menu.
  4. In the Field Permissions page do the following:
    1. Select Module from the drop-down list.
    2. Select Profile from the drop-down list.
      All the fields available in the selected module will be listed.
  5. Edit the permission for the desired field to one of the following as required.
    1. Read and Write - Permission to view and edit the field.
    2. Read Only - Permission to view the field.
    3. Don't Show - Restrict user from both viewing and editing the field.
  6. Click Save.
  1. Users with Light Agent profile cannot have Read and Write access for fields.
  2. Some system-mandated and time-based fields are restricted to read-only access.
  3. Field Permissions is available only in the Professional and Enterprise editions.

Preview layouts based on profiles

Once administrators set the field permission they can preview how these fields will appear for each profile within the layout. 

For example, the Phone number field can be read only for agents and read/write for support leads. The admin can use the preview option to see how the field will appear for agents and support leads before saving the configuration. 

Mapping Dependency Fields

Dependency fields are those that have a parent-child relationship, such as the Country and State field values. The relevant States will only be listed when the Country is also selected. Similarly, you may only need to list the sub departments when the main department is selected, or list the issues based on the Product type. Such dependency fields can be created using the Pick List data type fields.

To map field dependencies
  1. In your Zoho Desk portal, go to Setup ( ).
  2. Under Customization, select Layout and Fields.
  3. Click Fields Dependencies under the Layouts and Fields sub-menu.
  4. Select the desired Module and Department where you want to create the dependency fields.
  5. In the Field Dependencies page, click Add New Dependency.
  6. In the Add New Dependency pop-up screen, do the following:
    1. Select the Parent Field from the drop-down list.
    2. Select the Child Field from the drop-down list.
    3. Click Next.
    4. Click each of your parent field values, then select their corresponding child values.
      A tick mark indicates your selection of values for a parent field value.
  7. Click Save Field Dependency.
    When you create a new record in the module, the values on the child field will be populated based on the value chosen for the Parent field.

Customizing Search Fields

Customizing search fields can greatly enhance the user experience on a website or application. Allowing users to choose which fields to search increases the efficiency and accuracy of the search process. You may want to search records by name, email, or subject of the ticket request and the option to restrict your search to these fields will help you easily find the information, while minimizing irrelevant results.

By default, all the fields are selected and so the system will search all the fields' values in modules like Tickets, Contacts, Accounts, and Knowledge Base.

To customize the fields to be searched
  1. In your Zoho Desk portal, go to Setup ( ).
  2. Under Customization, select Layout and Fields.
  3. Click Search Fields under the Layouts and Fields sub-menu.
  4. Select the desired Module from the list.
  5. In the [Module] Fields List page, click the Specific Fields option.
  6. Select the checkbox(es) of the fields whose values needs to be used for search.
  7. Click Save.

Search Fields is an organization-level setting, and it applies to all departments in Zoho Desk.
When you choose to search for specific fields, you can select a maximum of 10 fields/module. For the Contracts, Products, Calls, Events, and Tasks module, you can select a maximum of six fields.

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