Even More Automation: Accelo Triggers Gets Clients & Profits Upgrade

3-Mar 2016
geoff professional
Geoff McQueen FOUNDER & CEO

Accelo's Triggers are one of our most popular features as they allow users to create rule-sets that run automatically. When the rules are satisfied, triggers can change values, send emails, create tasks and update status for requests, sales, projects, tickets or contracts. People often use them to remind salespeople to follow up with a client they haven't contacted in a while, escalate tickets or notify managers that a contract/retainer is almost exhausted.

Now, with their most significant upgrade in over a year, we're excited to announce that the Triggers module is much more powerful!

With this upgrade, you can now:

  • Create Triggers directly on Companies and Contacts (including conversations)
    Perfect for relationship nurturing and account management, you can now use Triggers to remind staff to get back in touch with a VIP client who hasn't been contacted in a while; the activity rules also allow you to look across the whole system for any interactions.
  • Include new Rules on Requests, Sales, Projects, Tickets & Retainers to include Company and Contact attributes.
    Not all clients are the same, and if you've ever wanted to have one set of rules on, say, sales or tickets for VIP clients and a different set of rules for everyone else, now you can!
  • Include more activities (including ones from client contacts) as the basis for rules.
    While the Triggers have long had a cool feature where you could set a field, task or send a reminder if no-one from your team had contacted a client, you couldn't have rules that fired if you hadn't heard from the client. That's no longer the case, which is perfect for situations where you have a ticket in "Waiting for client" status and they haven't emailed in over a week.
  • Create Triggers based on financial rules like profitability, budget utilization and more.
    There's nothing worse than the surprise of your important project or other client work going way over budget when you weren't looking! Now you can create Triggers to set custom fields (Status=At Risk) or send email notifications whenever your client work goes past a set budget threshold or when the profit margin drops below a certain point.


Company & Contact Triggers

While Accelo has long let users create Trigger rules on Requests, Sales, Projects, Tickets and Retainers, the core of your client database disappointingly remained a Trigger Free Zone.

Well, not anymore!

company trig overview

The Company and Contact Triggers will make it easy to automate those client relationship management tasks which aren't often as top of mind as clients you're working on closing through the sales module or doing work for through the projects, tickets or retainer modules.

By setting up Triggers for Companies and Contacts, you can ensure you don't forget to follow up with VIP accounts, you can automatically adjust the status of companies and contacts, create update custom fields or categories and so much more.

The Rules available for Company and Contact Triggers include:

  • Core company fields like company name, status, comments
  • Core contact fields like firstname, lastname, job title, email address, status, etc
  • Profiles and Category fields for Companies and Contacts (popular ones being industry category, contact gender, whether the company is VIP customer, etc)
  • Whether the company is in a division - very handy for those cases where you're running multiple businesses out of a single Accelo account!
  • Recent email contact from contacts against the client, including not just emails on the company/contact, but also emails they sent which are against any sales, projects, tickets, retainers or anything else in Accelo!
  • Recent emails sent by your colleagues to the custom, including any future scheduled activities imported or synchronized with your regular calendar.

The Automation Actions available when the rule-set matches include:

  • Update a Field, be it a built-in field, a custom field or even adding or removing a company/contact to or from a category.
  • Send an Activity (including mail-merge fields) to remind colleagues to take action or even send an email straight to client contact.
  • Create a Task (companies only) reminding one of your colleagues to do something.
  • Change the Status of the Company or Contact.

Example 1: VIP Follow Up Reminder
If you've got a list of important VIP clients (either in a Category in on a Custom Profile Field), you might want to create a Trigger that checks to see if any of your users have been in touch with anyone at the client company in the last 4 weeks, and if they haven't, create a task for the account manager to reconnect.

company trig vip

Example 2: Automatic Reconnect Email
Using the power of Accelo's automatic email tracking (which means you can trust your data is accurate), you can set up an automatic reconnect email to go out to any of your client contacts in a certain status who you haven't talked to in more than, say, 8 weeks, asking something like "I was thinking of you and [company] the other day and how it has been a while since we connected - what's new?". You can modify the content of this email every once in a while to make sure the client contact never gets the same email twice, and even include date based rules to queue up a bunch of these friendly touch points for different seasons through the year - all sent by you, automatically!

company trig recon

Example 3: Stale Contact Status Change
The final use case here (and we're truly just scratching the surface) is the ability to change the status of a contact to be "Stale" if they're someone who hasn't sent you an email in over 6 months (and who you have been emailing).

contact trig stale

New Company & Contact Rules on Existing Triggers

In addition to introducing the ability to put Triggers against Companies and Contacts, we've also extended the Company and Contact fields (including custom fields and categories!) to all the other places we use Triggers.

ticket comp

This means you'll now be able to create even more fine-grained Triggers that only fire when the Sale, Project, Ticket or Retainer pass all their rules AND the client the Sale, Project, Ticket or Retainer is against also satisfy the rules.

Example 4: Requests for VIPs to become Ticket
While Accelo's Requests module is a great way of triaging incoming requests (like those emails that go to support@yourcompany.com), if you've got a VIP client you might not want to wait for your support team to turn their Request into a Ticket! With the new Company & Contact rules on the Request Triggers, you can do things like automatically turn the Request into a Ticket, send a special email to the client letting them know you've got their ticket and they're in the VIP queue and even set an alert or deadline just for their tickets!

trig request vip

Example 5: Escalations for Clients with SLAs
Similar to Example 4, you can also use the Company & Contact rules to have special escalations occur just for Tickets belonging to clients that have an SLA. As an example, you could have a Gold, Silver or Bronze Service Level Agreement for a client, and if there is a ticket for a Gold client which hasn't been responded to or claimed by a tech within 2 hours you can have a Trigger fire specially notifying the support manager that things are not going well! You could also set a custom date/time field so you can more easily report on performance later.

ticket sla trig

New Activity Rules on Existing Triggers

Accelo's ability to accurately track and index emails between team members and clients is one of its most attractive features. By combining this with Triggers, your users have been able to create tasks, send reminder emails and update fields (or status) based on whether users have emailed the client recently. However, until now the rules were very limited - it only applied to activities (emails) sent to clients, which meant examples where you wanted the trigger to fire if the client didn't email you, or if you wanted the trigger to fire only when no staff activities had been recorded, you were out of luck.

trig act rules

Now, with this upgrade, you're able to create rules based specifically on client's emailing you, or based on anyone making any notes or activities at all.

Example Use Case 6: Automatically Closing a Ticket when Client Doesn't Respond
The classic example we've probably all experienced is at the end of a support or customer service process - when you or your colleagues have emailed the client to let them know you're done unless they've got any questions… and then they don't reply! With the new Activity rules on Triggers, you can set a rule which says an email should go out to the client when a Ticket is in "Waiting for Client" and after one of your colleagues has emailed them more than 3 days ago. This email could be something like "We're about to close your ticket due to inactivity - but if you want us to keep it open, please reply and let us know what still needs to be done". Then you can create another trigger which fires if the client doesn't email you for 5 days - which can change the status of the ticket to closed automatically.

trig ticket waiting

New Financial Rules on Existing Triggers

Financial information is some of the most important information in our user's businesses, but it is often the hardest to keep track of, especially when things get busy. That's why we're so excited about the new Financial Rules on Triggers, which will allow Accelo to keep a constant eye on things like budget usage and profitability and send you a notification in real time when things start to get outside of where they should be!

trig finan

Example Use Case 7: Email Notification on Project Profit Margin Drop
Running a profitable service business is key to success (and survival), but often we're too busy focusing on the day-to-day and the urgent tasks to make the time to stop and review where things are at. With the new financial trigger, you can now get an email any time a project drops below a profit margin threshold you've set.

trig proj health

Example Use Case 8: Email Notification on Ticket Budget Exceeded
There's probably some surprises you enjoy, but we're pretty sure the surprise of a ticket going massively over budget isn't one of them! With the Budget Trigger now available in Accelo, you'll be able to get an email notification if a Ticket of a certain type or classification has taken more than a certain amount of time (or billable budget) to complete - allowing you to see things before they get too far out of scope or over budget.

trig tick budg


This powerful Triggers module is one of the features only available in the Premium tiers of Accelo. If you're currently getting by on the Plus edition and you'd like to see if Triggers will make it worth upgrading your account to Premium (and getting lots of other benefits at the same time like Scheduling, Profitability and Utilization Dashboard, Approvals and more), email support@accelo.com and we'll take things from there.

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