What is an association

An association helps you establish a meaningful relationship between objects in Freshdesk. For our considered use case, information specific to furniture is not very useful to a Support manager who is looking to get the team to resolve tickets faster. To use the order details in a meaningful way, you can create a relationship/an association between ‘Orders’ and other objects in Freshdesk. For every ticket raised, agents will need to understand which order the ticket has been raised for, and other associated details to assist them better. 

How to associate objects

To establish a relationship between orders and tickets, you can associate them using a ‘Lookup’ relationship. When you create an association, agents will be able to view a custom widget within the ticket that consists of the fields that we created in the custom object. 

Association between different objects in Freshdesk can be done in two ways:

  • Custom-Custom: Create and associate two custom objects.
    For example, let’s say you are a property manager, and customers use your services to find and book properties in the location they’re traveling to. You can create two custom objects - Homestays and Reservations, and associate them within Freshdesk to help agents understand how many reservations are made for the various homestays and all other related details.

  • Custom-Native: Create a custom object and associate it with a native object like Tickets, Contacts, and Companies. For example,

We created a custom object as ‘Orders,’ and we’ll be associating it with the native object ‘Ticket’ to help agents get more context out of issues raised.

  • Native-Custom: Associate a native object with the custom object that you’ve created.

For example, let’s say you’re a property manager. You create a custom object called ‘Property’ that lists multiple properties, and you can associate them with a contact. So when a ticket is created, an agent will be able to look at a contact and view all the properties that they own. 

For native objects association, we currently only support Tickets, Contacts, and Companies.

Let us now see how you can create an association for our considered scenario. 

Once you create/import records into your custom object, you can use the Lookup Relationship field under Ticket fields to create associations. 

A quick guide to creating associations:

  • Go to Admin → Workflows → Ticket Fields

  • Click the ‘+’ icon next to Lookup Relationship

  • Give your field a name that will be displayed to agents on the tickets page 

    • In our example, it is ‘Order ID’

  • The source object here is native, so it’ll be automatically set to ‘Ticket’ 

  • Next, select the relationship type - there are two different types of relationships you can establish between objects in Freshdesk:

    • Many to one: You can associate many records of the source object to one record of the target object. For example, a customer can raise multiple tickets for one order. 

    • One to one: You can associate only one record of the source object to one record of the target object. For example, let us say you’re creating a custom object to maintain requests for obtaining a driving license. In this case, one driving License number can only be associated with one customer.

  • Now, enter the target object - ‘Orders’, and click on Save Field

  • The association between the source and target object will now be created 

What happens when you associate objects 

Once we establish an association, the next step is to decide what fields are displayed to agents on the ‘Tickets’ page. 

  • On the Custom Objects page, click on Customize widget

  • The first five fields are checked by default, you can choose which fields you want to display on the Custom Object widget on the Tickets page

  • You can select up to five fields to be displayed within the custom object widget

  • Select the required fields and hit Save

Let us say a customer has reached out to your business via chat to report an issue with an order, and you create a ticket on behalf of the customer. When you create a new ticket, apart from the usual fields like Contact (Contact is another native object in Freshdesk), Subject, Description, etc., you will also have the field that you set as the Lookup field - in our case -  ‘Order ID’. 

Here, the agent just has to input the Order ID that the customer provides, and all the associated order details will be displayed in the custom widget on the right side of the Tickets page.

The agent now has a comprehensive view of all order details and issues on one page, and they can get down to addressing the issues more efficiently.

Here is a small video to help you understand custom object associations within Freshdesk.:

1. For Freshdesk, Custom Objects is available only for ticket-specific use cases. If you have a contact-specific use case, reach out to us at support@freshdesk.com
2. For Freshdesk Omnichannel, CUstom objects is available only for ticket-specific use cases. It will be made available for all use cases tentatively by the end of August.