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How to Create Support Departments in WHMCS

WHMCS is your ultimate companion for reselling web hosting.  This guide will help you create Support Departments in WHMCS, which is a step you should take after installing WHMCS so customers can contact you regarding Support or Sales inquiries.

Did you know that you can get a free WHMCS license with our reseller hosting plans? Give us a try! 🤝

Let’s begin!

Important Information:

You have 2 options when it comes to how you want to handle Support Tickets in WHMCS.

  • You can create a Support Ticket system wherein customers can only open new tickets and reply to existing tickets via their WHMCS Client Area.
  • You can pipe emails sent to your Support Email Addresses into WHMCS Support and customers can use email and/or their Client Area to open new tickets and reply to existing tickets.

We will cover how to Pipe your Email Messages into WHMCS at the end of this Knowledge Base article.

Additional Information About WHMCS Support

You do not have to use the built-in Support functions of WHMCS. It is provided to you so you don’t have to use third-party solutions which are paid, such as ZenDesk, however use of WHMCS Support is not mandatory to sell products through WHMCS.

How to Create Support Departments in WHMCS

Creating a New Support Department (Without Email Importing)

Step 1: First, log in to your WHMCS Admin. Once logged in, click the wrench in the top right corner, then click System Settings.

Step 2: Once the System Settings page loads, use the search function at the top to search for ‘support’, and the Support Departments option should load:

Step 3: Once the Support Ticket Departments area opens, you’ll see a list of your departments, as well as the Email Piping Paths to import tickets sent via email.

Click Add New Department to begin adding your first Support Department.

Step 4: You’ll see a few options when it comes to adding a new Support Department. Let’s review them!

  • For Department Name, enter the name of the Department, such as Sales, Support, General, etc…
  • The Description of the Department is for your reference so you know which department is which.
  • The email address of the department is used within WHMCS and will show as the email address from which the replies are sent to clients, even if you are not using email piping.
    • If you are not using email piping, you still need to enter an email address here.
      • The address you use doesn’t necessarily have to exist in cPanel unless you are using email piping.
  • Checking the names adjacent to Assigned Admin Users will enable those users to access support tickets in this department and reply to them, close them, or update them, as needed.
  • The Clients Only feature will only allow registered customers to open tickets to this department. Non-registered individuals won’t be able to open tickets in this department.
    • Be sure not to use this for a pre-sales department. 😉
  • Pipe Replies Only will require users to log in to the Client Area to open new tickets.
    • Attempts to open new tickets via email will fail, but users can still respond to tickets via email.
  • If you don’t want customers to receive an auto-response stating hey, we got your ticket and we’re on it, or something similar to that when they open a ticket, tick this box.
  • The Feedback Request option will enable or disable the sending of an automated feedback request email when a ticket in this department closes.
  • If you want this department to be hidden from customers, tick the box next to Hidden. This feature is useful if you have Internal departments, like a Management Department, where tickets can be escalated, but are not available to outsiders directly.

If you aren’t using POP3 Importing or Email Piping, you can click Add New Department to add this new Support Department into WHMCS, and you’re good to go!

If you are using POP3 Importing, or Email Piping, you’ll need to fill in the Mail Importing Configuration fields Continue reading to the next section for assistance.

Creating a New Support Department (With Email Importing)

Important Information Before Proceeding:

You have 2 options when it comes to importing emails from 3rd party email systems:

  • Google

Using Google requires setting up OAUTH or OAUTH2 in WHMCS which is beyond the scope of this tutorial. If you wish to set up POP3 Importing with OAUTH via Google, please review the WHMCS documentation on the subject by clicking here.

We will be covering how to import emails that go along with our support department using POP3.

This section will help you add in email importing for the Support Department you’re creating. Let’s take a closer look at the Mail Importing Configuration fields, below:

  • The Hostname will be mail.yourdomain.tld or the server hostname where your account is hosted, such as rs1-cityname.serverhostgroup.com.
    • If you host your email with another company, such as Rackspace, you would enter their hostname in this field. Rackspace’s hostname is, secure.emailsrvr.com.
    • Next, enter the Mail Server Port. For POP3 this is typically port 995.
    • Following this, enter the email address which goes along with the support department. For example, if the department you created is literally called Support, and the email address you used in the email address field is [email protected], ideally the support email account would be set up as [email protected].
      • As such, enter the email address which corresponds with the support email account here.
    • Enter the password to the email account.
    • Finally, test the connection. If the test is successful, you’ll see a message like the one in the image below:

Creating the Email Importing Cron Jobs in cPanel

Next, to have WHMCS automatically poll the email account(s) that goes with the Support Department(s) we’ve created, we need to create a cron job in cPanel to automate that process.

If you aren’t sure what a Cron job is, not to worry! A Cron job is basically a small script that runs at a preset time and automates a task for you.

The steps below will help you with this. Don’t worry if it seems complicated, we’re going to go step by step!

Step 1: In a new browser tab, log in to your cPanel. There’s a lot of ways to do this, but the sure-fire easiest way is to login to your Client Area, then open your cPanel.

Step 2: Once your cPanel is open, use the search function at the top, and search for cron.

Click Cron Jobs to open the Cron Jobs utility.

Step 3: Scroll down to the Add a New Cron Job section in the Cron Jobs utility. This is where we’ll be adding the to have WHMCS automatically import the emails from the POP3 email accounts associated with our Support Departments.

Click the drop-down menu next to Common Settings and choose “Once Per 5 Minutes”.

The forms will prefill with the command structure to have the cron run once per 5 minutes and those fields should look like the ones below:

Step 4: Next, return to the tab in your browser where the WHMCS > Support Tickets area is open.

At the top of that page, you should see 2 Cron job entries, similar to the ones below:

Important Note:

We have blurred out a little bit of the 2 Cron job paths at the top of the image. Yours obviously won’t have that blur. 🙂

Using your mouse cursor, copy the part of the path beginning at /usr/bin and ending in pop.php. Your selection should look like this:

/usr/bin/php -q /home/YourcPanelUserName/whmcsdata/crons/pop.php

Step 5: Return to the tab in your browser where cPanel > Cron Jobs is open.

In the Command field, paste the Cron path you copied from the previous tab.

When the text is pasted into the command field, it should look similar to this, without the blurred out portion.

Click the Add New Cron Job button to save this Cron Job.

And that’s all you need to do in order to set up Email Importing via POP3 in WHMCS > Support Departments. Now, your customers can email [email protected] and when that message is received by the email server, WHMCS will automatically import the message into it’s Support System (Help Desk) and you’ll be able to respond just like it were a normal ticket opened directly from the customer’s Client Area!

We hope you found this tutorial helpful! If you have any questions, leave a comment, or have a chat with our friendly support team 24×7!

▶️ Please join us in the next tutorial where we will walk you through Getting Started with WHMCS MarketConnect in WHMCS.

Updated on March 17, 2022
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