Small help requests system. Subscribe to topic so people can ask you for help or who subscribed where and ask them for help
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Help me!

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This application is a simple, easy to run support system for your team. It's ment to be used internally, to encourage your team members to help each other.

The flow is quite simple:

  • we sign in users with google apps
  • every user selects the topics, he feels he can help with
  • user seeking for help picks the topic from the list and application will randomly assign somebody to help him (from the list of users that marked the topic as their skill)

TL;DR: you select what you can help with or application selects somebody to help you

main page


This is just a simple rails app, can be easly deployed to heroku under < 5 time mark :) Once you have your account set up, do this:

  • Clone the application locally:

    git clone git:// help-app && cd help-app

  • create an empty app on heroku, with postgres - replace 'crazysheeps' with your own app name:

    heroku apps:create crazysheeps --addons heroku-postgresql

  • push the app to heroku, let them do their thing:

    git push heroku

  • load the database schema

    heroku run rake db:schema:load


Setup database

create user and a role, then copy sample database.yml file.

createuser --superuser --createrole help
cp config/database.yml.sample config/database.yml

Once it's deployed it needs few configuration variables to run properly. Here is the config file for reference:

  • Secret key base - used for encrypting cookies

    heroku config:set SECRET_KEY_BASE=randomstringwithminimum30characters

  • App domain - the domain the application is aviable under. Like so:

    heroku config:set

  • Google apps - we assume you use google ouath for authentication. Go to your google console to generate oauth client and secret for the project. In google console set

  • You can use plain google account but we recommend using google apps, to scope login to emails from your organization. Set values like so:

    heroku config:set GAPPS_ID=google_apps_client_id
    heroku config:set GAPPS_SECRET=google_apps_client_secret
    heroku config:set GAPPS_DOMAIN=google_apps_primary_domain
  • Postmark - if you want the application to send out email notifications on support request you can configure it to use postmark free account. Heroku makes it easy - read more here and follow the instructions:

    heroku addons:add postmark
    heroku config:set POSTMARK_API_KEY=the_api_token_from_postmark_account

    Once you do have your postmark account connected with heroku, you can configure a from address with them (or set it to postmark default). More here:

    heroku config:set

  • You can also set a cc address for all support emails to scope the conversations under google group, or add notifications with Zappier - we used this to display support activity on hipchat:

    heroku config:set

Setting help subjects

For now we did not yet develop any admin panel for the application. You will have to use heroku console to create your support categories. This is how we set them:

> heroku run rails console

irb(main):001:0> Topic.create(title: 'test category', description: 'test description')
=> #<Topic id: 3, title: "test category", description: "test description">
irb(main):002:0> Topic.create(title: 'anoter help subject', description: 'another topic description')
=> #<Topic id: 4, title: "anoter help subject", description: "another topic description">

Title have to be present and have minimum 3 characters. Description have to be present also and have minimum 6 characters.

Archiving users

In order to archive user, please use the following rake task:

heroku run bin/rake users:archive[] --app=appname

If you don't have access ask someone who has. (senior / team leader)

Read more

Read more about the app & story behind at Open Source App To Support Your Culture.

Here a bit about the app's redesign & enhancing user experience.

Copyright (c) 2014 Netguru. See LICENSE for further details.