As our workplaces become more interconnected, help desk software is more useful than ever across a wide range of applications. Product teams, development studios, ecommerce companies, and many other types of teams are adopting ticketing systems that streamline the way they handle customer service and IT support.
There are two main kinds of service desk software: those intended to help your employees and those intended to help your customers.
Depending on your needs, you may find yourself drawn to tools that address one, the other, or both types. Improving the “customer journey” has proven to increase revenue up to 15% while also boosting customer satisfaction by around 20%. On the other hand, your internal employees may be losing up to two weeks of work time per year to technology and computer issues.
Knowing this, it’s easy to see the importance of support desk software for your customers, staff or both. A robust IT help desk can help keep your customers happy, help you identify issues and route them to the correct people to resolve customer inquiries, and help your support team manage their workload.
You might be wondering: Okay, so…what are the top help desk software? What do my desk agents need? Does my small business need this? Is this going to help me answer every customer query? How can I best make these decisions? While we can’t definitely match every group with the ideal help desk solution, we can give a concise review of the best help desk management software available today.
This article will help you quickly compare and evaluate the best help desk software, including help desk ticketing software and IT help desk software. Below you’ll find an overview of these help desk software tools, with screenshots, feature overview, and pricing.
Helpdesk Software Comparison Criteria
What criteria do we use to determine the best IT help desk software? What does it mean to have support desk software that stands a cut above the rest? How do we evaluate help desk ticket systems in our ticketing system comparison?
We like to be completely transparent in our evaluation methods so we have broken down the who, what, where, why, and how for you here.
- User Interface (UI): How well-designed is the support desk software? Does it offer clear displays and intuitive navigation? Is it aesthetically pleasing or all-business? Who does the UI cater to and do they succeed in addressing their target user?
- Usability: Is this easy to learn and master? Are there tutorials and training? What tech and user support is offered by the software company?
- Integrations: Is it easy to connect with other tools? Any pre-built integrations? How many different integrations are available and how easy (or costly) are they to implement?
- Value for $: How much does it cost? Are there different tiers? What features do you have access to at each stage?
Helpdesk Software Key Features
When reviewing helpdesk software, I look for how many key features and functions each provides and how powerful they are? Specifically, I looked for:
- Multi-Channel Ticketing System: Tools should have a robust ticket management software. They should streamline tickets from multiple sources so you can communicate across channels (email, phone, etc) from one place. It should help you manage this stream of tickets by providing the ability to automatically tag, categorize, prioritize and assign incoming tickets from any channel. Help desk ticketing system comparison between product tiers.
- Collaboration: Tools should keep users informed of ticket owners, statuses, responses and priorities to help sync your team efforts.
- Automations: Helpdesk systems should offer the ability to set time-based and event-based triggers, as well as custom workflows with automations that route tickets to the right user for the best response.
- Reporting and Analytics: The help desk system should offer configurable dashboards that display key help desk data as well as live reporting to get a bird’s eye view of current operations.
- Knowledge Management System: ITSM utilizes a repository of previously resolved problems. Could be a public customer self-service website, or an internal repository for customer service reps and technicians. Should incorporate advanced search technologies (such as auto-suggest) to help users find answers quickly.
- Self-service: This includes things like product documentation, downloadable patches, and forums or user communities that help customers solve their problems. Tools should provide a way to submit issues when customers can’t resolve through self-service.
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HaloITSM is a help desk solution that helps businesses streamline the incident lifecycle, from ticket creation to issue resolution. It enables professionals to update the status of incidents and view details including ticket ID, priority level, issue summary, and date created.
HaloITSM allows organizations to link new incidents with existing requests and share potential solutions with team members or end-users through the knowledge base. Managers can specify default values such as categories, priority, service-level agreements, or mailboxes before creating requests. Customer service agents can view upcoming tasks on a calendar and streamline approval processes by requesting validation on ticket creation or modifications.
HaloITSM facilitates integration with various third-party applications such as Microsoft Office 365, Azure DevOps, Microsoft Teams, Lansweeper, and more. Other features of HaloITSM include reporting, compliance management, status tracking, a self service portal, collaboration, and auditing. It also helps businesses generate maintenance requests, store asset details, and set validation rules across configuration fields using IP addresses or numeric passwords.
In addition, HaloITSM can serve as an enterprise service management solution allowing you to extend your workflows beyond IT and experience the benefits throughout the organization. HaloITSM enables teams to join together siloed service areas to create seamless processes and a great experience for users.
Zendesk is an easy-to-use customer service solution that’s sophisticated enough to meet complex needs and simple enough to let you get set up and running immediately.
Zendesk makes it easy for desk agents to track, prioritize, and respond to customers with one unified agent workspace that brings all conversations across web, mobile, and social channels together. With complete customer context, including more than 1000+ pre-built integrations from the Zendesk Apps Marketplace, agents have all the relevant customer details and interaction history to provide better, more personalized support.
Your team can customize the support environment based on use cases, such as software support, customer service, troubleshooting, and orders & shipping. Leverage built-in routing and intelligence to collect critical details and reduce data entry, and escalate issues to the agent best suited to help. Zendesk allows users to create knowledge base content for customers and a customized, mobile-responsive, help center.
Zendesk includes a reporting solution for ticket and support teams that allows access to real-time and historical data, and allows you to analyze your performance using pre-built dashboards that are pre-populated with useful metrics such as unresolved tickets, reopened tickets, and ticket resolution times. Users can also customize dashboards and charts, and share relevant dashboards to keep stakeholders in the loop about key insights and trends.
Zendesk starts at $19/user/month and offers a 14-day free trial.
Zoho Desk is a cloud-based customer service application with contextual AI that helps your company build stronger relationships with customers.
Zoho Desk has great features for prioritizing, managing, and closing customer support tickets. Users have control over tickets submitted to the support team via email, phone, chat, social media, a self-service portal, forums, and web forms. All tickets are presented in one place, and team members can set priorities and close tickets in the preferred order.
The tool allows teams to create a Knowledge Base of customer support articles, so your team can quickly find appropriate solutions for customer tickets. Zoho Desk’s Help Center features also allow customers to create a ticket and track it online themselves.
Zoho Desk’s AI and automation features take into account an appropriate resolution time based on your business hours when a customer ticket is created. If those parameters are missed, the ticket will be escalated automatically. Tasks such as ticket assignment, service escalations, notification rules, live chat widget and time-based actions can be automated by setting workflow rules.
The tool provides detailed reports and analytics about your support center performance, such as the average resolution time, the number of tickets closed per agent per day, the number of tickets opened per product and more.
The platform integrates with Zoho customer relationship management (CRM), as well as other Zoho Apps. The tool also offers an API for further integrations.
Pricing starts at $14/agent/month billed annually. Also has a freemium version up to 3 agents.
FocalScope is a unified help desk software that enables you to connect with customers more effectively via email, voice, live chat and social media.
With a focused workspace, agents can get a full view on every email ticket, owners and deadlines. Features like quick-reply, canned responses, and internal notes boost productivity, while collision alerts prevent duplicate work and confusion. While its highly intuitive interface builds familiarity quickly, FocalScope also comes with unique on-the-job training features that provide full oversight on new or struggling agents. Feature guides, tutorials, and user manuals are also available via their website.
Having live chat and messaging apps Facebook, Telegram and WhatsApp makes it convenient for customers to reach you on their preferred channels. FocalScope keeps you organised, while chatbots are available for automating basic enquiries and diverting traffic to a self-serve knowledge base.
FocalScope’s fully-integrated voice solution lets you create an entire phone experience using built-in text-to-speech within minutes. Customise everything from the text, voice, and accent to produce high-quality nested IVRs, FAQs and surveys—without voice talents or fancy equipment.
To tackle enquiries coming from all fronts, you can route tasks based on your business hours, shift timings, and agent skillsets. Manage individual SLAs or KPIs through a series of automatic time-based triggers: flag aging tickets, alert supervisors, or escalate to a dedicated team.
On data analytics, FocalScope provides over 70 pre-built live dashboards and reporting templates where you can measure KPIs like ticket response time, CSAT scores, agent performance, and/or SLA compliance. Alternatively, you can also customise your own at no extra cost.
FocalScope integrates with your internal systems and common apps like Salesforce, Shopify, and Microsoft Teams. Travel management companies will benefit from their Sabre, Travelport and Amadeus integrations. The tool also offers open APIs for building your own integrations.
FocalScope starts at $9/agent/month (up to 2 agents) and comes with a 30-day free trial.
ServiceDesk Plus is a complete IT Service Management (ITSM) suite with built-in IT Asset Management (ITAM) and Configuration Management Database (CMDB) capabilities. With advanced ITSM functions, powerful automations, smart customizations, and easy-to-use capabilities, ServiceDesk Plus helps IT support teams easily deliver world-class service to end users at lower costs.
Features include strong incident management processes that help resolve incidents swiftly and improve agent productivity; comprehensive problem management features that enable IT teams to classify, analyze, and close issues as well as identify repetitive issues to close tickets faster; and a change management system that allows IT teams to implement IT changes with minimal risk through streamlined planning, approval, and implementation.
The tool also provides integrated knowledge management, virtual assistant, and AI capabilities, as well as effective SLA management with proactive and reactive escalations and escalation actions.
It offers various integration options, including Microsoft Outlook, Microsoft 365, Microsoft Teams, Jira, and more through REST APIs.
Pricing for ManageEngine ServiceDesk Plus starts at $12/per user/month for the standard plan. See further pricing plans on their pricing page.
ClickUp is a tool that helps project managers to reduce the number of tools they use. Why? Because you can customize almost anything! Adjusting lists to handle your helpdesk operations is as easy as using a template or building a list with custom fields.
ClickUp allows your team to involve other team members at any time, thanks to tagging and mentioning features. If a request lands in the wrong place, it can also be reassigned with just a couple of clicks. The most important thing for me is the automations available within the software.
Go to the automations menu and select the behaviors you want the software to follow. For example, when this task status changes to complete, notify or assign the task to this person. You will soon find that you can automate a ticket's entire flow, including approvals.
ClickUp offers native integrations with Slack, G Suite, Salesforce, and many more tools, as well as over 1,000+ integrations through Zapier.
ClickUp is free with limited storage for an unlimited number of users. Paid plans start at $5/user/month and offer a free trial.
LiveAgent is for customer support teams of all sizes. The software collects and organizes customer queries from multiple channels, and enables agents to collaborate to resolve them.
The software has tons of useful help desk features. LiveAgent’s multi-channel ticketing system converts all received messages from social media, email, phone and live chat into tickets, and then organizes them according to importance. The software is collaborative, and eliminates account sharing, device and account monitoring, duplicate answers, and confusion. The software has powerful automation rules that can be either time-triggered, SLA triggered, or action triggered.
LiveAgent’s reporting and analytics features enable users to create comprehensive reports on agent availability, resolution times, rebukes, and more. The software also recognizes the need for self-service in customer support and enables users to create internal and external knowledge bases that are fully customizable and equipped with FAQs, feedback, suggestions, and forums.
The software’s UI is very clean and minimalistic, however, it does have quite a learning curve. Not to worry though, LiveAgent provides integrated guides so you can utilize the software in no time. The biggest pro of using LiveAgent is its price to value ratio. LiveAgent offers over 179 advanced help desk features and integrates with over 40 third party applications. The software is fully customizable– from general appearance and sounds to specific feature customization. The cons include a steep learning curve and limited mobile app capabilities.
LiveAgent supports both native and third-party integrations. Native integrations include but are not limited to Braintree, Slack, Instagram, Shopify and more. LiveAgent also provides built-in migration plugins that enable you to migrate data from your old help desk software into LiveAgent.
LiveAgent costs from $15/user/month. They also offer a free trial, a forever free account, and a product demo.
Wrike is a help desk tool trusted by 20,000+ organizations worldwide and is suitable for any size team. Wrike’s powerful automation engine promises to improve engagement, lead to better customer support, and foster good relationships with clients and other team members. Easily set up request forms that auto-assign tasks, allowing each ticket to be tracked through to completion.
Wrike’s simple interface updates in real-time, so your help desk team can stay on top of new tasks and adjusted information at all times. Instant @mentions and live editing capabilities mean any queries are ironed out quickly, and issues can be resolved in an efficient manner. Customizable workload views allow each team member to choose the way of working that suits them best.
Wrike has an easy-to-use, intuitive interface that allows team members to start helping clients without having to avail of in-person training themselves. Wrike also simplifies team collaboration with instinctive navigation between distinct spaces, folders, and tasks. Wrike has a dedicated help center with interactive training, videos, a ‘getting started’ guide, and a thriving community.
Wrike includes over 400 integrations, including the most popular file management software from Microsoft, Slack, Google Drive, and Dropbox, as well as Microsoft Excel and Project. You can check if the application your team needs is in Wrike’s app directory for seamless integration.
Start free with Wrike, no matter how big your team is. Or, try a free 14-day trial of Wrike’s more advanced features and customization. Paid plans start at $9.80/user/month.
OneDesk combines help desk and project management software and allows users to access all work, collaboration, and communication in one place so users can avoid having to buy, learn, integrate, and switch between multiple applications.
OneDesk includes a multi-channel ticketing system that gives users the flexibility to create tickets for issues noted through email, support portals, live chat, and more. Collaborate with your team and your customers in resolving issues. Automations are customizable and allow you to set up complex workflows. The tool’s knowledge management system includes the use of knowledge bases which lets you publish self-service articles for your users and customers.
OneDesk also includes project management features, including multiple view layouts that allow you to filter and group tasks the way you choose. Views include the task list flat view, which is especially useful for assignees when keeping track of their workload; and roadmap, Gantt, and status board (Kanban) views, which provide project managers with visual and functional flexibility when planning or managing projects. Other project management features include scheduling tasks, sharing files, and real-time communication between team members.
The interface is clean, and the navigation makes it easy to find applications and project levels, as well as change views and layout. OneDesk is also quick to set up — the learning curve depends on the complexity of the workflows you create. There are tutorials, videos and live-chat support options which are all accessible within the OneDesk web application.
OneDesk currently has native integrations for Box, Dropbox, FreshBooks, Mailchimp, Okta, QuickBooks, Microsoft Visual Studio, WordPress, and Azure Active Directory. Integrations with 100s of other web apps are also available via Zapier.
Pricing for OneDesk starts at $9 per user per month.
InvGate Service Desk is an ITIL-ready solution with an unprecedented user interface offering incident, problem, change, asset, and knowledge processes. Service Desk provides unmatched collaboration between users, powerful automations, and smart ticket management tools.
InvGate Service Desk offers multi-tenant cloud-based SaaS or On-Premise implementation. It also comes with 100% code-free configuration, drag-and-drop visual workflow builder, business analytics reporting, custom dashboards, SLAs, email ticketing, and Gamification.
InvGate Service Desk integrates with CMDB.
InvGate Service Desk offers pricing details upon request.
Need expert help selecting the right Ticketing & Help Desk Software?
We’ve joined up with the software comparison platform Crozdesk.com to assist you in finding the right software. Crozdesk’s Ticketing & Help Desk Software advisors can create a personalized shortlist of software solutions with unbiased recommendations to help you identify the solutions that best suit your business's needs. Through our partnership you get free access to their bespoke software selection advice, removing both time and hassle from the research process.
It only takes a minute to submit your requirements and they will give you a quick call at no cost or commitment. Based on your needs you’ll receive customized software shortlists listing the best-fitting solutions from their team of software advisors (via phone or email). They can even connect you with your selected vendor choices along with community negotiated discounts. To get started, please complete the form below:
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Other types of software you might need:
Not looking specifically for helpdesk software today? Here are a few adjacent topics that I think might interest you:
- Bug Tracking: If a lot of your help desk traffic is about bug reports, maybe it’s time to start investing in bug-tracking tools like DoneDone, Trackduck or DebugMe.
- CRMs: Many customer relationship management tools offer modules for customer support—see if you can cut down on the number of tools you’re using by getting a CRM that has helpdesk features included.
- Collaboration Software: you could also look at using online collaboration tools to manage communication between departments in order to resolve issues and keep a searchable record of communication.
What is helpdesk software?
Helpdesk software is a digital hub where customers can send queries to be logged, organized, and resolved. This may involve elements such as ticket management, automation suite, reporting and optimization. It may also provide a knowledge forum for the self service portal of repeat or ongoing requests.
What are the benefits of helpdesk software?
Helpdesk software is important because it unifies all of the communication and records about your support issues, providing a single system to effectively communicate about, track, manage, and analyze issues.
The benefits of helpdesk software include faster turnover for technological issues, customer satisfaction, increased revenue, increased productivity, and better job satisfaction.
What Do You Think About These Top Help Desk Solutions?
There are plenty of help desk systems to choose from—the real trouble is finding the best one for you. Once you have a list of Must-Haves, you can start narrowing down your choices by comparing it to the selection above.
Is there anything that should be on our list that you think we missed? Do you have personal experience with any of these softwares that you would like to share? Sound off in the comments of this article. We would love to hear from you.