ServiceNow vs Zendesk: Which Helpdesk Can Reshape Your Business?

Technology revolutionizes industries, and customer support is no exception. With the rapid rise in innovation, companies are on their toes to get that digital transformation into their workflows. Frankly speaking, if the strategy fails, no help desk platform will make your business succeed. So, if you have done your homework and know what tools you need, let’s go down to ServiceNow vs Zendesk comparison.

If you want to outline a rough difference between the software, then here it is:

ServiceNow focuses more on ITSM and asset management, business workflow automation, and app development.

Zendesk delivers multi-channel ticket management, ITIL standards, workflow automation, self-service, and analytic options.

However, let's take a closer look at each tool.

ServiceNow vs. Zendesk Comparison

First off, you need to decide what tasks the help desk software has to handle. ServiceNow comes out to be a part - IT service management app - of a business framework that automates and builds custom workflows. Also, ServiceNow goes with built-in chat and phone support. But the app isn’t a pure standalone platform.

Talking about Zendesk, the vendor offers ITIL certified service desk management. Still, the functionality proves to be more oriented towards product support.

Learning Curve

Compared to Zendesk, the ServiceNow dashboard is more complicated. The jam-packed menu turns out to be less useful and comprehensive.

ServiceNow works only in the cloud. While Zendesk provides native apps for Android and iOS devices. So if you want your support team to resolve tickets on-the-go, Zendesk can make it happen.

Let’s step aside from the user interface. The cold hard fact is that working with any platform may become challenging and you need help from a vendor.

Zendesk enables email, live chat, or phone support 24/7. And the more expensive your subscription, the more help options you get. Plus, there is a customer portal, knowledge base, webinars, training and certifications for admins, agents and developers.

As for ServiceNow, you get access to customer community, knowledge base and documentation. You can also get trained and certified on how to set up and use the vendor’s apps.

Pricing options

The comparison of the initial price and further maintenance cost may be eye-opening for you. But that is a bit hard to provide. Why? Well, ServiceNow doesn’t offer numbers for their pricing. They say the cost depends on your industry type, company size, a stage of your business growth. Still, they ensure that their packages are flexible and will be tailored to your unique requirements. Drop them a line to get a custom quote.

Zendesk Support starts from $5 user/mo (or $9 use/mo if you want to pay monthly.) There are five pricing packages with a growing number of options and features in each. This application works as a multi-channel ticketing system. And the live chat, phone support, knowledge base tools are free in Lite versions for all Support plans.

Note that Zendesk Chat, Zendesk Talk, Zendesk Guide have separate pricing.

Integrations to Use for Customer Service Improvement

Companies apply many business apps and tools, including back-office systems. That’s why the open API and integration capabilities impact the choice of the help desk platform.

ServiceNow Store provides the Now Platform Apps (nearly 219) and Integration (nearly 326.) These tools will help you to manage and improve your business in HR service delivery, business management, operation management, service management, security and risk, service management, software lifecycle, and others.

In Zendesk, the integration capabilities depend on the subscription. All plans, apart from the Essential plan, have access to public apps and integration from the marketplace. The Professional, Enterprise and Elite enjoy building private apps and integrations.

You can get apps to advance analytics and reporting, collaboration, productivity and time-tracking, email and social media, IT and project management, knowledge and content, survey and feedback, telephone and SMS, eCommerce and CRM.

Zendesk vs ServiceNow: What’s Hot and What’s Not

Help desk platforms are about multitasking and using technological advancement to processes enhancements. Here is a brief comparison of the main features:

Account management in both apps has a customer account and contact management. Thus, with Zendesk, you can manage accounts for individual customers, while ServiceNow allows you to add or change customer location and addresses.

ServiceNow has built-in product and asset management options. You can manage multiple services and products, handle asset lifecycle, track purchased products, asset location, ownership and the like. With Zendesk, you can get these capabilities only via integrating third-party apps.

In contrast to Zendesk, you can get service contract and entitlement management with ServiceNow. Due to these options, you can define the entitlement for product, account, asset, or contract. ServiceNow offers service contract management for all customers. Besides, you can create a set of unique conditions for every customer and manage every stage (creation, approval, activation, and expiration.)

As for the communication channels, ServiceNow lacks social media integration. So, you can’t offer your customers support via Facebook or Twitter.

The knowledge base opportunities are quite similar in managing content, categorization, access for departments or groups. But with Zendesk, you can also import your articles as Google Docs.

Last but not least is case management. Both ServiceNow vs Zendesk provide ticket views, assignment, and routing, SLA and escalation management, automation and workflows. And you can set access rules to displaying tickets for agents or groups.

In Zendesk, you can have light agents. If you have experts that can fix issue or problem, you can add them as light agents without buying a separate license for each one. Yet they can only view and leave private notes on tickets.

Another benefit of Zendesk is for the support agents. Thanks to macros, your team can create a set of pre-defined answers on common questions and share them with colleagues too. And the guided mode will ensure that reps are playing fair and don’t hand-pick tickets.

Final Thoughts

There are many aspects to compare out there; you got a brief coverage of the most important of them. Now you evaluate the difference in Zendesk vs ServiceNow pricing policies, features, and integrations. Either way, a great help desk platform is a thoroughly tested platform. In case, you have doubts about - run a 14-day Zendesk trial or request a demo from ServiceNow.

And when you decide to migrate your help desk data to a new platform, you can always contact Help Desk Migration for an automated switch.

Frequently Asked Questions

ServiceNow focuses on IT Service Management, app development, business workflow automation. On the contrary, Zendesk is largely oriented on multichannel ticket management and self-service.

Yes, you can integrate Zendesk with ServiceNow using such apps as, SyncSnow, and more.

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