A Quick Guide To Choosing a Help Desk Ticketing System

Today, business moves faster than it ever has before. To stay competitive and be successful, a business needs every advantage they can get — and that means putting customer service at the top of their list of priorities. It used to be that a call center or even a mail-in address might be enough to satisfy customer expectations, but those days are long gone now. To make it in today’s marketplace, you need to not only be ready to support customers across a number of channels, but also resolve issues in a timely and efficient manner.

To this end, many businesses are opting to use help desk ticketing systems to take in, organize, and resolve customer issues quickly. We’ll take a look at what ticketing systems do, how your business can put them to work, and how to choose the best one for your needs.

This article should cover the following:

What Is a Help Desk Ticketing System?

First, let’s delve into definitions: a ticketing system is an integral part of most (if not all) help desk software suites. The purpose of a ticketing system is to act as a central repository for collecting, organizing, and managing incoming customer requests, inquiries, or issues.

How does it work? Each interaction, or “ticket,” contains all the relevant information — such as contact info, description of the issue, priority level, and any previous interactions the customer may have had with your business. The ticket is then routed to the correct support agent or team, so that the issue can be resolved with a minimum of fuss or hassle. The result — when the system is working well — is a smoothly operating process where customers see their problems resolved swiftly and walk away feeling good about giving you their business. Nowadays, businesses can further enhance their customer service by choosing to hire a customer service virtual assistant. Such virtual assistants can manage tickets, provide immediate responses, and ensure that customer queries are addressed promptly, contributing significantly to customer satisfaction.

There are several different flavors of help desk software — some are on-premises and hosted on your company’s own server; some are open source and can be freely modified and customized at the source code level; many are now cloud-based (hosted on external servers and accessed through the internet) and most help desk systems have an enterprise-level solution with advanced features for larger and more complex businesses.

Benefits of Ticketing Software

So how can a help desk ticketing system help your business? A number of ways, as it turns out.

First, a good ticketing system will give your customer a better service experience: quicker response times and more effective resolution of issues means higher satisfaction rates.

Not only can your customers benefit, but also your agents: with the right software and training, support agents can find their workflow growing more efficient as they’re able to manage and prioritize requests — reducing chaos, confusion, and handle times.

Analytics and data-driven insights can also prove a huge book to your business. With the right metrics, you can identify business trends, spot recurring issues with certain products or services, and discover new ways to improve your support process.

Finally, a help desk ticketing system will scale with your business in the way simpler, less sophisticated solutions won’t. So when your business inevitably grows as a result of your superior customer service, you won’t have to spend time and money on upgrading your customer service infrastructure.

Finding the Right Ticketing Software

So now that you know what help desk ticketing software can do for you (and how it does it), all that remains now is to find the right software for your needs. While you’re looking, here are some initial steps to take:

Assess your needs. To choose the right software, you first need to determine what issues that software will address. You’ll need to have a firm grip on your support volume and communication channels, as well as which features you need most. Speaking of which…

Look at key features. Your team will be using this software every day, so make sure it will be not only effective, but easy to use: an intuitive UI, automation features, multichannel functionality, scalability, metrics + analytics, and (optimally) integration with the other tools your team uses (Zendesk, for example, has over a thousand such integrations).

Consider additional features. But the core features don’t have to be the end of it — do you want chatbots? Live chat? Self-service portals? The ability to integrate Service Level Agreements?

Think about security. When you work with any customer service software, you’re responsible for safeguarding your customer’s data — to have it leaked or exposed could be a huge blow to your reputation (and finances). Make sure the software has strong security protocols so you (and your customers) never have to worry.

Shop and compare. Several help desk suites offer free trials so you can give the software a workout before you decide to buy. This way, you can not only test things like usability, but also compatibility with your operations.