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Setting up escalation rules
Answer ID 2181   |   Last Review Date 08/23/2021

How do I set up escalation rules?


Escalation, Business Rules, All versions
Oracle B2C Service


Business rules are configured from Configuration > Site Configuration > Rules.  Select the Edit mode from the ribbon and the type of rule you wish to create (i.e. incident, answer, etc.) to begin editing the rulebase.

Setting escalations uses two distinct rules. The first rule, also called the "chain" rule, defines the conditions of the escalation and specifies the escalation level to be set in a specific timeframe. This rule should evaluate true for only one very specific case and there should not be multiple rule paths or state which evaluate true for any escalation. The second rule indicates the actions to be taken when the escalation occurs. 

The main steps to the escalation process are:

  1. When a record is created or saved, it is compared to the rules and functions called within the rule state.
  2. During the comparison to the rules, the record might match the chain rule for an escalation.
  3. The chain rule includes an action in the THEN part of the rule "Escalate to Level ..." and defines an absolute or relative time for the record to escalate to the level indicated. At this point, the escalation is only a pending escalation.
  4. After the time specified in the chain rule passes, when the spm_scheduler utility runs, the escalation level for the record is changed and the record is updated.
  5. This update of changing the escalation level triggers the record to again be compared to the rules and functions in that rule state.
  6. If your rules are set up correctly, the record will match the second of your rules and the actions associated with the escalation are executed.

For information on how to test your escalation rules, refer to Testing escalation rules. Escalations should be cleared before moving to a closed status. Refer to Clear rule escalations before moving to a closed state for more information.

For example, using the rules below, you can escalate an incident if it is still unresolved 4 hours after it has been created and send a notification to a supervisor or manager.

Rule: Esc 4 hours - chain

Incident: Escalation Level = unspecified AND
Incident: Status = Unresolved

Escalate to Level: 4 hr (or whatever name you choose)
+ 4 hours relative to Time Created.
√ Use response interval √ Revalidate

(Check the relative check box and the Use Response Interval and Revalidate check boxes.)

Rule: Esc 4 hours

Incident.Escalation Level = 4 hr AND
Incident.Previous Escalation not equals 4 hr

Send Escalation Notification (select staff member or group)
Include whatever other actions you deem necessary

Note that when setting up the second rule, the IF criteria included an item for both the current escalation level and the previous escalation level. The previous escalation level is only set when the escalation value changes. This helps to restrict the escalation actions to the specific incidents that have just changed the value of the escalation level when the incident was updated by dbstatus.

When configuring your chain rule, you must determine whether you want to check the Use Response Interval and Revalidate check boxes.

If you check the Use Response Interval box, only time that is included in your default response requirements are used in the time element. That is, if you specify 4 hours as the time element and check the box, this means, 4 work hours as configured in your Default Response Requirements table.

If you check the Revalidate box, at the time of the escalation, the incident is compared again to the original IF conditions and the incident is escalated only if it still meets the IF conditions of the chain rule. For more information on these options, refer to Response Intervals and Revalidation.

Once all edits are done, select Compile and/or Activate for the newly created rules to take affect.

For more information regarding business rules, refer to the following published answers:

Answer ID 1842: Overview of business rule functionality

Answer ID 2205: Best practices for setting up incident rules

For additional information, refer to the 'Rules for Escalation of Answers, Incidents, Opportunities and Tasks' section in the Online Help User Guide documentation for the version your site is currently running. To access Oracle B2C Service manuals and documentation online, refer to the Documentation for Oracle B2C Service Products.