What are case escalation rules?
Case escalation rules are used to reassign and optionally notify individuals when a case is not closed within a specified time period.
Why use case escalation rules?
Common use cases include:
- Ensuring cases do not go unresolved by support agents (e.g. escalate any unresolved cases to management after 80 working hours).
- Prioritizing support of important customers (e.g. standard customer cases are escalated after 80 working hours; gold customers are escalated after 16 working hours).
- Ensuring the customer support team is meeting customer service-level agreements (Entitlements and Milestones greatly expand on the Service Cloud’s ability to enforce SLAs, but are not covered in this guide).
How are escalation rules structured?
Escalation Rule –> Escalation Rule Entry –> Escalation Action
The escalation rule is the container for all rule entries and rule actions. Only one can be active at a time, and most organizations will only need to use one rule.
Escalation Rule Entry
When a case is created or modified, it will look to the list of rule entries for the first match. That rule entry will determine the case escalation actions. If no rule is matched, case escalation will not occur.
For instance, I create a new case. The associated account’s country is “US”, its SLA “Platinum”, and the case priority is “Medium”. This case will take the escalation actions associated with rule #2, as this is the first rule where the case matches the rule criteria:
Each escalation rule can have many associated actions. Rule #2 has one associated action, which will notify and reassign the case 6 hours after creation if it is not closed:
I could add addition escalation actions as well. For example, I may want to escalate this case again if not resolved within 48 hours.
Business Hours, Holidays, and Case Escalation
To learn how to configure business hours and holidays, see Company Profile – Free. The combination of business hours and holidays determine when escalation actions occur.
Each org must have one default business hours configuration:
The default business hours is populated into the case field “Business Hours” when a case is created:
Note: this field is hidden by field-level security by default. You don’t necessarily need to expose it.
Case escalation rule entries can reference business hours in one of the following ways:
- Ignore business hours (e.g. for business critical 24×7 support cases)
- Use business hours specified on case (shown above; this will typically be your org’s default business hours)
- Set business hours (could be used if the case is escalated to a team in another time zone)
Case escalation rule entries are evaluated every time the case is modified. When changed to a rule that would have previously triggered escalation, the case is escalated as soon as possible.
- Escalate 3 hours after creation date if Priority is “High”
- Escalate 6 hours after creation date if Priority is “Medium”
A user creates a case with priority “Medium”. After 5 hours, they change the priority to “High”. This case will be escalated shortly, as it now matches the criteria specified for priority “High” and is 2 hours “overdue” for escalation.
Modifying related records used in case escalation rule criteria will not invoke rule re-evaluation of related cases.
Monitoring Case Escalations
Monitoring case escalation rules is straightforward, but can be incredibly helpful when troubleshooting escalation actions.
Navigate to Setup –> Monitoring –> Case Escalation: