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    [Delivered] HTML formatting within agent responses
    Idea posted June 23, 2009 by KyleLegend, last edited August 20, 2013 by Camille ChristophersonSpecialist, tagged Agent Desktop, System Admin and Configuration 
    393936 Views, 100 Comments
    [Delivered] HTML formatting within agent responses
    User Story / Description:

    Does anyone see the benefit for giving the agent the ability to send a reply back to the contact with HTML formatting instead of plain text? Personally I'd like to use bold, italics, bulleted/numbered lists, and other types of formatting commonly found in an email client. I would even go one step further and allow for inline images to be dropped in, much like the functionality here within the Lithium forum.


    • NeilS

       Hang in there Skywalker.. I know how important this feature is to you, and it's on its way as quickly as we can get it to you.

    • Willie Eide

       I think my biggest concern is that Kyle will now send in incidents with animated emoticons... oh brother!

    • NeilS

       Hey everyone, I have great news - Visual Email (the feature containing the ability to receive and send formatted Incident responses) will be available with the Nov '11 release! It's been a long journey to get this project completed, and I'm proud to say that we've stayed the course and will be delivering this feature to you. As of today, the project is complete and now transitions into the final system integration testing for the Nov '11 release.

      "So, what happens next" you might ask? A few things:

      1. You will need to upgrade to Nov '11 or later to use the Visual Email capability.

      2. Upon upgrading to Nov '11, your existing Incident workspaces and emails will remain the same until you enable Visual Email (check the release documentation once it's available for complete details here.) Visual Email is an optional capability, and you can migrate to it at any time - no need to migrate to it as part of an upgrade.

      3. Once you enable Visual Email, you'll want to begin using the formatting-supported control in your workspaces (again, check the release documentation once it's available for complete details.)

      4. We will not deprecate the non-formatted thread control (the one everyone uses today) until Nov '13 at the earliest, so you will have at least 2 years to migrate over to Visual Email.

      The engineering team has put forth great effort to make this feature as powerful and simple to use as possible, we hope you will love it!

      - Neil

    • Ian Merwin

      Hey Neil, Thanks for sticking with this.

      I was just about to post an idea for supporting fixed-width or monospaced characters/formatting - and then I saw this post. We often reply with code snippets, database query results, etc. - and it would be nice to wrap these in <pre> tag:

      id type    seq     label
      1       6       1       Default
      2       10      1       AgentTransfer
      3       10      2       Answer
      4       10      3       Confirmation
      5       10      4       Contacts
      6       10      5       Dialog
      7       10      6       Incident
      8       10      7       Locator
      switch ($i) {
          case 0:
              echo "i equals 0";
          case 1:
              echo "i equals 1";
          case 2:
              echo "i equals 2";

      I'm assuming you have already considered this as well (I just didn't see it called out specifically). Maybe that's covered in the 'indenting'. Just wanted to throw this out there 'just in case' it missed the priorirty  list.

    • Kyle

      Holy ***, so I'm just now finding out that my forum subscriptions to all of my Idea Lab posts haven't been working. I mean I know the Idea Lab can be a little slow on adopting customer requests but I guess I just took it for granted that nothing's happened over the past year. Thanks Lorax for bringing this to my attention. 


      I'm pretty stoked about Visual Email making it to the Nov11 release. Last summer I beta-tested it (or maybe it was charlie or delta-tested) and it worked great! I don't know if all the features I tinkered with will be available but it was very easy to format agent replies, add inline images, etc. We have nearly 50 RightNow sites across our organization and I'm sure we'll be upgrading all of them to Nov11 just to take advantage of Visual Email. 


    • Kyle
      The Lorax said:

       I think my biggest concern is that Kyle will now send in incidents with animated emoticons... oh brother!

       Hmm... if it wasn't for my heightened sense of perception you almost made the emoticons feature sound like a bad thing.

      Never underestimate the power that a dancing banana conveys within an agent's reply back to the customer.


    • jht

       This is great news.

      Question.  Will Standard text be included in the ability to modify via the HTML editor in the Standard Text configuration area?

      Most of our auto responses and agent responses revolve around the use of standard text.


    • Willie Eide

      (jht) Great question.

      Yes. A change to the standard text was included in this project as we know many of you utilize this part of the product hand-in-hand with the incident editor. The change included a couple of things. First, a rich text toolbar was added to the HTML  segment of the standard text. Administrators can now create full rich text responses. Second, the preview window for the standard text dialog was changed to show the HTML content and if that is non-existant then it displays the text version. Lastly, when adding a standard text item to the incident thread at hand, the internal logic will determine if the receiving thread is rich text or plain text (an option that can be toggled). Based upon that determination, the standard text object will drop the appropriate textual value into the thread.

      I do believe we cover most (if not all) the use cases for standard text.


    • Kyle
      The Lorax said:
      I do believe we cover most (if not all) the use cases for standard text.


       Wow, so there's a directory where you can add custom smiley/emoticon images? Awesome!

    • Willie Eide

      Sorry...  I should have said "normal" use cases...

      Granted there is nothing that will stop you from copying/pasting an animated gif into your thread... sigh.

    • Kyle
      The Lorax said:

      Sorry...  I should have said "normal" use cases...Granted there is nothing that will stop you from copying/pasting an animated gif into your thread... sigh.


      No worries, I'm sure the Smiley Library will be available in the Visual Email 2.0 release. 

    • Jens

      Just a small correction to #4 in Neil's August 18 post:

      The non-formatted thread control will be deprecated in the November 2011 release but will not be removed until November 2013 at the earliest. See for more information about our Support and Release Policies. If you don't know what deprecation is Wikipedia has a good summary:

      Jens Lundell
      RightNow Workflow Development Manager

    • Paula Hempen

       Ok, we've made the leap, upgraded to Nov 2011, and while I am THRILLED about incident responses, I am disappointed to see that proposing an answer from an incident is not working like I would have thought it would.  Essentially any images you have in the incident itself will carry over when you propose it, however if you wanted to enhance or add to your knowledge article with more cut and paste images, it won't do it -- it only works by adding attachments!   I hope you guys are planning to fit this editor so it is equivalent across incidents AND answers --- I would have thought this would only had made sense in the long run since we are generating our knowlegebase from our incidents.  I'm still trying to figure out how standard text threads may or may not work.  There is HTML format however again, no cut and paste images, looks like attachments as well.  Sigh....just went I thought we were getting somewhere, my expectations are dashed!


    • Ekko
      Paula Hempen said:

       Sigh....just went I thought we were getting somewhere, my expectations are dashed!

      Welcome to RightNow Money mouth

      This sums up pretty much my whole experience with RightNow.

    • Willie Eide

      Images within incidents are associated with the threads themselves. This allows us to associate an image without it having to be an attachment. As you know, answers (including proposed) do not have threads and thus have no mechanism for an upload during construction.

      Images are represented by a URL. Specifically a URL to a public repository. In other words, there needs a place for the image to reside publically in order for everyone to see it. Simply cutting and pasting from your clipboard is not something that is publically available within the Answer console; hence the mechanism is still the same for the knowledgebase. If you have the images that you desire in your answers located in a place that can be hit publically, then they can be referenced via URL within the answer.