Receiving requests by email

If your customers prefer to open and work on requests from the comfort of their email inboxes, you can enable email requests to gather these requests in JIRA Service Desk. No need to make your team keep track of email requests and service desk requests separately! Here's how it works:

  • A customer emails a request to your linked service desk account
  • An agent comments on the request in service desk, which sends the customer an email notification.
  • The customer replies to these email notifications until the request is resolved. All customer replies are automatically added as comments on the corresponding issue in service desk. 

On this page:

To link an email account to a service desk project, you must have the JIRA Administrators or JIRA System Administrators global permission.

Before you start

  • Enable public signup or manually add customers to your service desk project to ensure that you receive new customer requests.
  • Set up a suitable request type with Summary and Description as required visible fields. Any other fields must be optional.
  • Know which emails from your mail client will be processed.

JIRA Service Desk uses a built-in email processor to manage incoming emails in service desk projects. It's purpose-built for service desk projects and works differently from JIRA mail handlers. Issues created via JIRA email handlers don't show up as service desk customer requests. For this reason, we don't recommend using a JIRA mail handler for service desk projects.

Linking an email account

Open your service desk project and proceed to Settings > Email settings

  1. Turn on email requests and select Add email account
  2. Choose your email service provider and enter the requested details.
  3. Select a suitable request type (e.g. "Get help", which has been previously configured with required Summary and Description fields):
  4. Select Done. JIRA Service Desk will send a test email and create a corresponding test request in your service desk project. Head on over to the Queues tab to find the new request:

All new incoming messages sent to your linked email account will now appear as service desk requests in your project.


Which emails are processed?

Emails using POP

JIRA Service Desk looks for messages in your inbox that have...
  1. The "Deleted" flag set to false, and
  2. Been received after your email account and service desk project have been successfully linked.

To link your email account with a service desk using POP, make sure that your email inbox is empty by moving the existing messages to another folder, archiving them, or deleting them. Starting with an empty inbox ensures that you do not lose emails unintentionally, as POP emails are deleted after they are processed by JIRA Service Desk.

Emails using IMAP

JIRA Service Desk looks for messages in your inbox that have...
  1.  The "Deleted" and "Seen" flags set to false, and
  2. Been received after your email account and service desk project have been successfully linked.

If you use IMAP, emails are marked as read (not deleted) after they are processed by JIRA Service Desk. If you want existing messages to be pulled in by JIRA Service Desk, you can move them back to your inbox and mark them as unread after the connection has been established.

What notifications do customers receive?

If your service desk allows public signup, new customers will receive two notifications after emailing in a request, one with the details of the request and the other with information about their new user account. If your service desk does not allow public signup, or your customers already exist, a notification will only be sent with details of the request.

For further information about notifications, see Configuring JIRA Service Desk notifications.

Can I use multiple email accounts? 

You can only link one email account to your service desk project. 

If you use more than one email address to interact with your customers, you might be able to set up forwarding rules or aliases to receive requests in the email linked to your service desk project. You will need to configure any forwarding rules or aliases in your email client.

Last modified on Nov 10, 2015

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