One of the requests was that each ticket have a unique identifier, a ticket number. Of course this should be created automatically in some sort of serial fashion, if not strict serial fashion. The solution here is not so ingenious, but if you are unfamiliar with the Rules module, you might find this feature interesting.
The event that triggers the rule is saving a new piece of content of the type "ticket." There is no condition needed to qualify this action. The action simply populates a field with the node id, which is a number. I've used rules over and over in many different applications to populate fields with text strings or other kinds of information. This capability seems very useful to me.