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Helpdesk vs Jira: A World Difference Between the Two

Do you know the difference between a help desk and a service desk? They are very closely related. However, they are not the same.

Each type of support software has its purpose, a set of functions and areas of use. So, knowing which one is the right fit for your business is essential to invest money wisely.

Today, we’re going to break down the difference between a helpdesk and a service desk, using Jira Service Desk as an example; as well as compare helpdesk vs. Jira.

A world difference between the help and service desk

The concept of a help desk emerged in the 1980s when Ron Muns established the Help Desk Institute. The establishment was meant to evolve and innovate tech support as well as serve the industry, providing employees with a place where they could get guidance.

So, originally, the help desk was created to provide help, information. Nothing has really changed, except for the fact that help desks have become more technically advanced. But it still carries out the same mission - get the one who has an issue back on track as fast as possible.

As the industry and technology evolved, companies demanded more than just a quick-fix for customer issues. That’s when the concept of a service desk was born. Except for managing customers’ needs, service desk was also supposed to help prevent problems by measuring performance, structuring change and release processes.

In other words, a help desk is a tactic solution which allows to conveniently organize customer inquiries and get them solved as soon as possible. Service desk, on the other hand, is a strategic and business-oriented solution which can be incorporated into company’s processes.

What to expect and why choose a help desk?

Typically, help desk comes with the following set of features:

  1. Multi-channel support to let you track issues from different places;
  2. 3rd party apps integrations and add-ons;
  3. Knowledge management (a.k.a knowledge base) to encourage customers to find answers independently.
  4. Automation and rules to take repetitive tasks out of the way and streamline the flow;
  5. Reports and analytics.

Individually, vendors also offer many other functions that make their product unique and more helpful. However, the above mentioned is what you can expect from any help desk of your choice.

So, is help desk the right fit for your business?

Given the functionality, it performs several functions:

  • Serves as a single point of contact and communication between support agents and customers.
  • Helps increase the productivity of support staff.
  • Encourages customers to find answers in a self-service portal you create.
  • Allows measuring customer satisfaction and thus, improve your service.

If you need a simple tool to help prioritize and manage customer inquiries, ditch endless strings of emails and monitor the health of your customer service, then help desk is the way to go.

What to expect from a service desk and why choose Jira?

Since service desk evolved from a help desk, it has all the core function of the latter. However, except for the essential help desk functions, service desk has more to offer:

  1. Integration with IT related services, e.g., task trackers;
  2. Service Level Agreements;
  3. Service Catalog and a Self-service Portal;
  4. Built-in or integrated CMDB and Asset Management.

Having these additional features at your disposal allows building and controlling processes which can prevent problems from happening, both on company and customer sides.

Let’s take Jira as an example. Except for the Service Desk which serves as an issue tracker, there’s also Confluence which helps create a knowledge base; Jira Core and Software which allows converting customer inquiries into tasks as well as govern internal projects. All Jira products can be seamlessly integrated and used as one wholesome ITSM system.

When should you choose Jira Service Desk?

Deciding if Jira is the right solution for your business, the first thing to keep in mind that it is geared towards IT companies who either have their own product or provide IT services. If you need to connect different teams in a single workspace where they could efficiently manage, discuss and resolve problems, then Jira is the right choice.

However, if your company is not familiar with the coding mindset and has never heard the words “scrum’, “kanban” or “sprint” then it might be difficult to configure and use.

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