Rally Support Manager User Guide

Rally Support Manager (RSM) connects Salesforce Service & Support (Call Center) and Rally Enterprise, Rally's Application Lifecycle Management (ALM) solution.

The primary value of Rally Support Manager is to provide support organizations (and their customers) visibility into the development status of customer-reported defects. Closing the feedback loop to customers who reported these defects is critical to not only improving customer service and satisfaction, but also building trust with loyal customers who recommend your product or solution.

By maintaining a relationship between customer cases and development defects, Rally Support Manager allows support organizations to proactively inform their customers when their issues are addressed in one of their releases. It also provides visibility to development teams about the customers and how many of them are affected by a specific defect. This brings key information for product managers to triage and prioritize defects that get fixed in the next release.

For organizations that want support cases to be directly linked to Rally stories, Rally Support Manager allows customer support engineers to create Rally stories directly into the development backlog in Rally.

Note: We highly recommend you close support cases as they get addressed by development in Rally. As the number of open cases grows, timeouts may occur.

This guide includes the following:

Associate cases to Rally

You can associate Salesforce cases to Rally user stories and defects.

User stories

A case may be reporting a suggestion that was already reported by other customers or internally by the team. In this case, you can associate the case to an existing Rally user story from the case page in Salesforce. You can have an unlimited number of cases associated to the same Rally user story.

To associate a case to an existing Rally user story:

  1. From the Salesforce case page in the Rally Association section, click Select Project.
  2. From the list of available Rally projects, select the Rally project in which to search for user stories.
  3. Enter a keyword or a Rally numeric ID to locate the Rally user story.
  4. Select All User Stories from the drop-down list.
  5. Select Search ID or Search Name.
  6. When searching by ID, do not type the Rally prefix (such as US415), enter 415.

  7. Click Search.
  8. To view more detailed information on a Rally user story, click the user story ID in the Rally ID column.
  9. You may be required to log in if you do not have an open Rally session.

  10. Once you identify a match from the result list, click the Associate link on the Action column.
  11. The Rally user story Name, Description, Scheduled State, and Release are now visible in the Rally Association section. You may have to click Show Association to refresh the page.
  12. To provide development status visibility from the Salesforce customer portal, click Publish Rally Status. This populates the Case Development Status and Release Target fields.
  13. Click Publish Rally Status to populate the Case Development Status and Release Target fields for multiple cases at once from the Release Announcement Select Cases window.

Defects

A case may be reporting a defect that was already reported by other customers or internally by the team. In this case, you can associate the case to an existing Rally defect from the case page in Salesforce. You can have an unlimited number of cases associated to the same Rally defect.

To associate a case to an existing Rally defect:

  1. From the Salesforce case page in the Rally Association section, click Select Project.
  2. From the list of available Rally projects, select the Rally project in which to search for defects.
  3. Enter a keyword or a Rally numeric ID to locate the Rally defect.
  4. Select All Defects from the drop-down menu.
  5. Select Search ID or Search Name.
  6. When searching by ID, do not type the Rally prefix (such as DE821), just 821.

  7. Click Search.
  8. To view more detailed information on a Rally defect, click the defect ID in the Rally ID column.
  9. You may be required to login, if you do not have an open Rally session.

  10. Once you identify a match from the result list, click the Associate link in the Action column.
  11. The Rally defect Name, Description, Priority, Severity, State, Resolution, Scheduled State, and Release are now visible in the Rally Association section. You may have to click Show Association to refresh the page.
  12. To provide development status visibility from the Salesforce customer portal, click Publish Rally Status. This populates the Case Development Status and Release Target fields.
  13. Click Publish Rally Status to populate the Development Status and Release Target for multiple cases from the RSM Setup page.

Disassociate Salesforce cases from Rally

If you associated a case to the wrong Rally user story or defect, you may want to disassociate the case from Rally.

  1. On the case detail page, scroll down to the Rally Association section.
  2. Click the Disassociate link next to the associated Rally ID link.

A discussion is created in the Rally defect or user story to record the disassociation.

The case is no longer linked to a Rally defect or user story and the case information is removed from the Rally defect or user story it was associated with.

Rally Support Manager will prompt for a confirmation if you attempt to associate a Rally artifact to a case already associated to Rally.

Create Rally artifacts from Salesforce

You can create user stories and defects from Salesforce.

User stories

If you want to allow customer support to create user stories on the development backlog, Rally Support Manager provides an option to create user stories directly from Salesforce. Your Salesforce administrator must enable this option.

To create a Rally user story from a Salesforce case:

  1. From the Salesforce case detail page, scroll down to the Rally Association section.
  2. If the section is not already expanded, click Show Associations.
  3. Click Create Requirement to create a user story in Rally. A user story is created in Rally with its fields set as follows:
  4.  

    Rally field Value Default value
    Name Value of Salesforce field defined by administrator Case subject
    Description Value of Salesforce field defined by administrator Case description
    Rank Value of Salesforce field defined by administrator Blank
    Package Value of Salesforce field defined by administrator Blank
    Owner Value of Salesforce field defined by administrator Blank
    Notes Name of Salesforce user who created the defect  
    Custom fields Value of Salesforce fields defined by administrator  
    Discussion Case ID, account, case owner, case creator, description, and whether the case has an attachment in Salesforce  

    If no Create Requirement button displays, your Salesforce administrator may have disabled the ability to create user stories from Salesforce.

Defects

A Salesforce case may be reporting a new issue not yet entered in Rally. In this scenario, you can create a new Rally defect from the Salesforce case.

To create a Rally defect:

  1. From the Salesforce case detail page, scroll down to the Rally Association section.
  2. If the section is not already expanded, click Show Associations.
  3. Click Create Defect to create a defect in Rally. A defect is created in Rally with its fields set as follows:
  4.  

    Rally field Value Default value
    Name Value of Salesforce field defined by administrator Case subject
    Description Value of Salesforce field defined by administrator Case description
    Environment Value of Salesforce field defined by administrator Environment
    Found In Value of Salesforce field defined by administrator Blank
    Priority Value of Salesforce field defined by administrator Blank
    Severity Value of Salesforce field defined by administrator Blank
    Package Value of Salesforce field defined by administrator Blank
    Owner Value of Salesforce field defined by administrator Blank
    Notes Name of Salesforce user who created the defect  
    Custom fields Value of Salesforce fields defined by administrator  
    Discussion Case ID, account, case owner, case creator, description, and whether the case has an attachment in Salesforce  

Track development status

Once the association is made between Salesforce and Rally, Salesforce users can view the latest status of the Rally artifact (defect or user story) in the Rally Association section as the Rally artifact is being worked on in development. The State column displays the Rally Scheduled State and the Rally release currently specified for the artifact.

Caution should be used when sharing Rally development information to customers, as this information is rarely used as a formal commitment by the development team.

For Rally defects and user stories:

  • The State column displays the artifact's Scheduled State. Rally's default settings for this field are Defined, In-progress, Complete, and Accepted.
  • The Release Target column displays the release for which the Rally artifact is scheduled. If the artifact is not yet scheduled for a release in Rally, the Release Target shows Not Scheduled.

Search the development status of support cases

The Search Rally section allows you to search for an existing Rally artifact representing the issue or suggestion reported in the Salesforce case before creating a new artifact from Salesforce.

To avoid creating duplicate artifacts, search Rally for a potential match first.

Prioritize defects by customer impact

As support staff associate Salesforce cases with Rally artifacts (defects or user stories), Rally Support Manager adds customer information in the Rally artifacts to help development teams understand where the artifact came from and assist the development team in prioritizing their backlog based on customer value.

The following Rally fields and sections include information about the associated Salesforce cases:

  • Salesforce Case: The last Salesforce case (and hyperlink to the case) associated to the Rally artifact

  • Number of Cases: The total number of cases associated with that Rally artifact

  • Affected Customers: The names of customers who reported the case

  • Discussions: A discussion is entered for each Salesforce association and each Salesforce disassociation (includes the case ID, account, owner, description, and whether the case has an attachment in Salesforce

  • Notes: When user stories or defects are created from Salesforce, their Notes field indicate the Salesforce user who created them

These custom fields are updated whenever Salesforce cases are associated or disassociated with the specific Rally artifact. These fields are not automatically updated when changes are made to Salesforce cases or accounts. If changes are made to the case, it is recommended to disassociate and re-associate the case to Rally.

Salesforce case

Having access to the original customer report that led to the creation of a defect or a user story provides insight to developers on the business problem they should be solving.

A Salesforce Case Rally custom field (Web link type) was added to your Rally defect and Rally user story object during the Rally Support Manager configuration step. This field is updated with a hyperlinked case ID to the last Salesforce case associated to this Rally artifact. The defect revisions display the Salesforce case IDs for all cases associated to that defect.

To review the entire Salesforce case and its associated account, click the Salesforce Case link to open a tab in Rally into the detail record of Salesforce. You will need Salesforce login credentials.

Many organizations using Salesforce have created a read-only user account to access Salesforce reports, dashboards, and details pages. Once you create this account, you can share its details with your development organization.

Number of cases

Knowing how many customers have reported the same defect or feedback helps product managers prioritize the release backlog.

A Number of Cases Rally custom field (Integer type) was added to your Rally defect and Rally story object during the configuration step. This field is updated with the total number of cases associated to this Rally artifact upon association or disassociation of Salesforce cases.

Affected customers

Being able to quickly tell which customers are affected by a defect or which customers have submitted similar feedback facilitate the product owner’s role to prioritize release backlogs.

An Affected Customers Rally custom field (Text type) was added to your Rally defect and Rally story object during the configuration step. Every time a Salesforce user establishes an association from a case, this field is updated to include the new information. The pipe-separated list of concatenated account names is updated upon association or disassociation of the Rally artifact to Salesforce cases.

Customer Impact view for Rally

In order to facilitate access to customer information on defects and user stories, your Rally administrator should have created two shared custom views: Customer Impact to Rally User Story and Rally Defect Summary Pages.

The Customer Impact shared custom views display all artifacts that have been created from customer cases. These views provide development with insight on the customer reports that led to defects and stories. Using these views, Rally users can quickly identify defects that have been reported by customers, as well as how many customers reported the same defect and which specific customers are affected by a defect. This information allows product managers to prioritize the defect backlog by focusing on defects reported by many customers or strategic customers.

Use these views in release or iteration planning meetings to help choose the highest priority stories and defects to work on.

Communicate status to customers

When customers submit a case to support and support reproduces the customer issue or validates the customer suggestion, the case is communicated to development. Rally Support Manager brings visibility to customers and support organizations into the actual development status of their cases as development works at addressing the customer need.

Rally Support Manager extended the Case layout with two fields—Development Status and Release Target—to communicate to customers the status of their reported issue or suggestion and in which release the case will be addressed.

From Rally Support Manager, you can ensure these two fields are up-to-date by selecting Publish Rally Status in one of two places:

  • To update all Salesforce open cases associated to a Rally artifact, the Salesforce administrator initiates the mass update from the Rally Setup menu. Open your Rally Setup (for example, RS0000) and click Publish Rally Status.
  • To update a specific Salesforce case associated to a Rally artifact, the case owner initiates the individual update from the Case detail page. Click Show Association in the Rally Association section, then click Publish Rally Status.

Once the Rally status is published, the latest Rally status is available on the Salesforce self-service portal or customer portal, if the Development Status and Release Target fields have been selected to be visible on these portals. Refer your Salesforce administrator to the Rally Support Manager Setup guide.

Send email notifications to customers

To better communicate with your customers, Rally Support Manager provides the option to send them an email when their case is addressed in a Rally release. This takes place when a development release is imminent and uses the Salesforce Mass Email wizard.

  1. Create a release announcement to identify the cases.
  2. Add cases to the release announcement.
  3. Send the email communication.
  4. Close all cases addressed in the release (optional but highly recommended).

Create a release announcement

  1. On the Release Announcements tab of Rally Support Manager, create a new Release Announcement.
  2. Enter a Name reflecting the Rally release to announce.
  3. Optionally enter a Release Date, Version, and a Theme (these fields are only used for tracking purposes).
  4. Click Save.

To specify a release date in your email notification to customers, include the release date in the release announcement name (such as "Release on 04/21/14").

Add cases to the release announcement

  1. Open the release announcement you just created.
  2. Click Select Cases.

    If you have a large number of cases associated to Rally, the window may take longer to display.

  3. The Select Cases window lists all cases that meet these criteria:
    • Status is not closed
    • Associated to Rally (Rally Association = Yes)
    • Not already included in another release announcement
  4. Click the Rally Release column to sort cases on the Rally release.
  5. Select the cases to include in this release announcement based on the Rally Release and Rally State values.
  6. Click Add Selected Cases. The selected cases are automatically labeled for email notifications:
    • Their Release Announcement fields are set to the Release Announcement Name.
    • Their Announcement Label fields are set to either Fixed (for cases associated to Rally defects) or Implemented (for cases associated to Rally user stories).

By default, the email communication provided by Rally Support Manager will let you select one email template for cases associated to defects (Announcement label = Fixed) and a different email template for cases associated to user stories (Announcement Label = Implemented):

Announcement Label View in Mass Email Wizard Recommended Email Template
Fixed Fixed In Release Release Announcement - Fixed (By Release)
Implemented Implemented In Release Release Announcement - Implemented

You can override this default behavior. One valid reason to override this behavior is when a defect is reported by a customer but converted to a story in development. In this case you may still want to use the email template associated to defects. To override the default labeling:

  1. Open the release announcement.
  2. Click Set Custom Labels. A new window will display all cases included in the release announcement.
  3. Select cases of the same type (last column).
  4. Select the Announcement Label to apply to those cases.
  5. Click Label Selected Cases.

Initiate mass email case notifications

Once you have selected the cases to announce, you can begin the mass email cases process.

  1. From either the Select Cases or Set Custom Labels window, click Schedule Email Notifications.
  2. From the wizard, choose one of the case views and click Go.
  3. If a case does not have a contact or if the contact is marked as Email Opt-Out, the Mass Email wizard does not list the case.

  4. Optionally uncheck any contacts you do not want to notify and choose Next.
  5. Select the Email template to use.
  6. Review and confirm the mass email details.
  7. Choose Send or Schedule the email announcement.

Each contact involved in the cases included in the release announcement will receive a custom email informing them that their case has been solved in the release being announced.

See the Rally Support Manager Setup guide to customize release announcement labels, mass mail views, and email templates.

Close cases addressed in the release

Once cases have been announced, you should close the cases.

  1. From the Cases tab, create a Cases Ready to Be Closed case view with the following queries:
    • Announcement Label not set to None (customers have been notified)
    • Release announcement matching the release announcement you created
    • Status not Closed
  2. Click Close.
  3. Enter a common reason for all cases.

All cases resolved by the release are marked Closed.

Report on cases solved in a release

Rally Support Manager provides a set of Salesforce reports to display cases addressed by development:

  1. From Rally Support Manager, click the Reports tab.
  2. Under the Report Folder section, select Rally Support Manager Reports and click Go.
  3. The following reports are intended to be edited to match your data:
    • All Cases Solved in Release: Which defects and suggestions were implemented in a specific release? Edit the report to replace the release announcement criteria with your release announcement name.
    • Cases Solved for ABC in Release X: Which cases did release X solve for customer ABC? Edit the report to replace the release announcement with your actual release announcement name and the account with your customer's name.
    • Release X notification: Which customers were notified about release X? Edit the report to replace the release announcement with your actual release announcement name.
    • Solved Bug Cases: Which cases reporting bugs have been resolved by development? Edit the report to replace the case Reason from Bug to Enhancement Request to report on implemented suggestions.

Best practices

When using Rally Support Manager, you should be aware of these considerations:

  • It is strongly recommended to close support cases when the associated Rally artifact (story or defect) has been accepted in a release. A large number of open cases linked to Rally may cause timeouts.
  • It is strongly recommended not to delete release announcements. A release announcement records the history of specific customer reports addressed in a release. That information is valuable to track release metrics. Additionally, if you delete a release announcement, the Announcement Label field of all cases included in the release announcements remain intact, which may prevent automatic labeling of the cases if you decide to include the cases in another release announcement.
  • Before deleting a Salesforce case that is associated with Rally, we recommend you first disassociate the case from Rally.
  • When cloning cases that are associated with Rally, the Rally association is not cloned.
  • When cloning release announcements, the cases included in the original release announcement remains in that release announcement. The newly cloned release announcement does not include any cases.
  • Salesforce administrators have the ability to customize announcement labels. If you decide to modify the Rally Support Manager announcement labels or add new ones, remember to also modify the queries, views, and email templates to propagate those changes. For step-by-step instructions on how to do this, see the Rally Support Manager Setup Guide.
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Feedback

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