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Setting Up Forwarding from Outlook Group to ZenDesk


In ZenDesk there is the concept of channels. These are ways in which tickets come into your ZenDesk support account. One of these channels is email.

Ideally, with the email you want your users to be able to contact you via your company branded addresses. ZenDesk does support this but unfortunately getting Outlook to resend for you does not work.

I first tried to setup mail rules to do this. So when a message is sent to the required mailbox, forward it on to the ZenDesk support address. This does not work for a few reasons:

  1. When forwarding the from address will change to where the mail was forwarded from (i.e. your email address not the customer's). This means that triggers that try to respond to the from will go to you and not the customer.
  2. This has to be done on your mailbox and not at the group level. This has a bad bus factor - if something happens to you or your account this breaks.
  3. This is not transparent at all to other people in the groups. May lead to multiple people setting up rules which will break the process
  4. The ticket subject will have "FW: " in the beginning which is not ideal.
  5. You could create one ZenDesk support address to mirror each of your company addresses. But this becomes cumbersome fast.

In the end, after a bit of Googling I worked out the easiest way to do this is simply - add your ZenDesk support mail to each group you want messages to be forwarded from. Outlook allows external email addresses to be added to your organisation's groups. Groups are the same thing as distribution lists. You create a group with everyone who needs to be in it assigned. You then get an email address for the group of the form [email protected]. Be sure to allow external senders to contact this group (disabled by default).

By using a group this will:

  1. Pass the ZenDesk forwarding test
  2. Not change the sender (it will be your customer's from address)
  3. Not change the subject line
  4. Not expose your ZenDesk support address to the customer.
  • You will need to set up your DNS records as instructed by ZenDesk (when creating an external mail) to have it sent from the support address on your behalf.
  1. You do not and should not create ZenDesk addresses to mirror each group mailbox you have. You need just your 1 ZenDesk support address that they assigned you.

At first, this felt like a hack. But this is the ideal solution. You get the forwarding support you want and you also can add interested parties to the group but not have them need an account on ZenDesk as they can at least see tickets coming into the mailbox/es.