by August 1, 2011 0 comments



Ahelp desk solution typically comprises a very large and complex database consisting of customer information, call reports, information regarding hardware and/or software, problems and solutions logs, and service level agreements. Therefore, while searching for a solution the first choice you have to make is whether to go with a cloud-based or hosted help desk software. This depends on your budget and the number of employees you have in the organization. Cloud-based help desk software is the best choice for smaller organizations as well as for low-budget organizations. While companies having good budget and also good IT staff can go with any solution, you should consider certain key issues before you decide on the right helpdesk software. The cost of a help desk software varies widely according to required features, plan (monthly or yearly) and number of agents in your organization. Then you need to study your present and future business needs. That team will list out features important to your business.

Every help desk solution offers a wide variety of features hence it is important for a company to choose only the required functions. You must know your storage requirements, and it is important for any organization to have more storage than actually required, because as the organization grows so does the storage space. There are solutions available that provide unlimited storage space for customers. Ensure that the helpdesk you are looking for has the best security available as it is one of the major features you must look for since there is a lot of private data of your company and its employees, which also is shared amongst them. Hence you must look for a solution giving secure FTP-based file access. Then see the ticket management tool of the helpdesk. Once you login to your help desk solution, you need to create a ticket for requesting any service or registering any complaint. The ticket management system must have the ability to close and open tickets at any time.

An employee must be able to see the history of tickets previously generated by him and you must consider the best way of generation of ticket by your employees either through an email or a web-based submission system. Prefer a helpdesk software that provides 24*7 support for clients and allow you to brand your helpdesk by your required name and company logo. Another aspect is usage. You must ensure that the help desk software must be easily understood by your help desk team. The software does not require a separate technical team, your help desk software should have a clear interface for the employees and the help desk agents. Always think of a system that does not require coding knowledge for your team. Finally you must test the helpdesk software before implementing it as most of the help desk software providers allow customers to have a trail of their software. At the end check all things discussed above with your team and let the best one make your business reputation and improve its productivity.

Role of support team

Support agents have access to a central knowledge base containing all of the company’s product and customer information. Agents should be able to search the entire knowledge base, including articles and previous support tickets for an answer by typing relevant keywords or phrases. Clients can seek answers to their questions without contacting an agent by searching the knowledge base. The support team should teach both customers and support representatives to create ticket easily through the help desk’s ticketing system. Automated responses can be emailed to clients as soon as a request is received by the support team. Clients can rate knowledge-based articles, allowing agents to improve confusing or unhelpful support articles.




Key benefits

It provides support to every co-employee whenever they need help. It should also provide access to all the tools whenever there is any new employee hired or management change occurs. A help desk software efficiently handles pre and post system deployment issues both online as well as offline. It controls work-flow and communication between IT professionals and end users. A Web-based help desk software enables a business to grow as it helps potential and existing customers to communicate with the business or supplier. There is no need to register telephonic complaints. It ensures that a business offers 24/7 customer support. A business can automate several processes like maintenance of a data base, stock records, movement of goods, marketing trends, resolving employee problems etc. A good help desk software is a must, in order to properly manage the company’s data, contact information and references. Help desk agents are important for a business as they answer customer queries and solve vital problems. They must be trained, as they help update system software.

Cloud-based helpdesk software

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Kayako

Kayako is a feature-enriched web-based help desk service provider. It has an impressive knowledge base. Its ticket management has email notification, where customer receives automatic email for ticket created or updated and you also get quick response for your query. The live chat feature allows you to directly communicate with them through web browsers. Its user-friendly environment makes customer easily understand working on it. Kayako on demand has three plans: Kayako Fusion which has complete customer support solution and costs Rs.2184 staff/month; Kayako Engage includes live-chat, click-to-call and visitor monitoring like features and it costs Rs.1292 staff/month; and Kayako Resolve which features ticket and email management and collaborative inbox. It costs the same as Engage. Kayako offers a 30-day free trial of the product before purchase. For security purposes, it has password strength policies and IP address restrictions.

Pros: Impressive knowledge base
Cons: None
Contact: Kayako.com

Zendesk

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Zendesk, a web based customer service solution, enables you to support your customers through different channels, email, web, social media (Twitter, Facebook, live chat, etc ). All tweet activity between agent and twitter users is recorded on tickets. Customers can also sign in using Twitter. It facilitates email ticket tracking/monitoring. It has a variety of security options as password policy, SSL encryption, and SSO. You can choose your domain and brand names. While submitting a ticket you need to set its status (new, open, pending, solved), Type (question, incident, problem, task), its priority and assignee name. You can give tag to your ticket to make your ticket easily searchable. Its plans are per agent/month The starter plan is of Rs 401 and has basic mail and web helpdesk for upto 3 agents. The regular plan costs Rs1069 which includes domain mapping, data views and knowledge base management, while the Plus+ plan is available for Rs 2184 and features agent collision warnings, analytics, data portability and 24-hr phone support and email support.

Pros — Ticket export facility ( CSV, XML and Excel ), SSL Encryption
Cons — Has average knowledgable base.
Contact — Support.zendesk.com or
support@zendesk.com

Salesforce

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Salesforce, a cloud-based helpdesk solution for enterprises, has some impressive features like 24*7 support, Salesforce chatter, and recycle bin which can regain the deleted content, if required. It has separate desktops for sales, marketing, chatter and community. It also features calendar to save your plans and a reminder for them. Salesforce has recently added an interesting feature called Salesforce Chatter which is an internal social network for employees where clients can share their posts with everyone and also they can attach a file or link and share with all. The file can be attached either from your Salesforce page or from your storage. Another intresting feature provided is Salesforce for Google Adwords. It features your ad on Google and Salesforce partner websites which helps in gaining new customers. To access this facility you must login to Google AdWords. It has three plans for smaller teams. It has a Contact Manager which can have upto 5 users costing Rs.222 user/month. It allows you to store unlimited contacts. The second plan is Group which can also have upto 5 users and costs Rs 1,111 user/month. It gives 12*5 phone suuport, captures your website leads and more. Their last plan is for bigger teams and is named Professional. It costs Rs 2,888 user/month. It can have unlimited users, provides offline access also includes features mentioned in previous plans.

Pros — Salesforce chatter software, Salesforce for Google Adwords tool
Cons: None
Contact — emarketing@salesforce.com

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