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4 Types of Help Desk Systems

Most companies start connecting with customers through a simple “contact us” button on their websites or through casual messages on a company’s social media accounts. But as your company or small business grows and more and more customers have questions to ask and issues to raise, you may find yourself wishing for a more organized system.

Enter help desk support.

Help desk systems are a type of technical support software that addresses customer queries. Once a customer enters their query, it becomes an easily trackable ticket that your team can respond to. In addition to simplifying your organization surrounding customer inquiries, modern help desks can provide you with automation options and data about your customer service practices. If you still find yourself asking, “what is help desk software?” read more on the topic to find out if help desk software is good for your company. 

Between technological innovations and an increase in customers who want to interact digitally on phones and tablets, experts predict a steep rise in the number of companies who choose service desk software for customer issues in the next decade.

Here’s why you might want to join them.


Benefits of Help Desk Software

Before we explore the four types of help desk options, let’s dive into the benefits of a help desk ticketing system. These will vary somewhat based on your company and the software you select. 

Generally, help desk software benefits include:

  • Organization – Instead of customer queries flowing into a number of inboxes, the ticket system sends all queries to one place and sorts them by type. This makes it easier for team members to quickly address each customer interaction without anything falling through the cracks. 
  • Automation – For particularly common questions, your company can craft pre-written answers that the system can automatically provide to customers when their service requests are submitted. This speeds up response time for those customers and leaves your team free to tackle more nuanced customer questions.
  • Ticket reassignment – When an agent can’t answer a particular question, they can easily pass the ticket up the chain to someone more qualified to answer that question. This feature ensures the customer receives a helpful response as quickly as possible without reducing internal productivity.
  • Metrics – Help desk systems can track everything from query volume and customer experience to how long customer support takes to respond and resolve a customer query. Help desk metrics can inform your strategy when it comes to improving the customer experience, supporting employees, and monitoring general customer-interaction trends.

Help desk software can help improve both customer satisfaction and employee efficiency. Choosing a system that helps your employees do their jobs well can improve company morale, thus adding to your company’s success.


What to Look For in Help Desk Software

Some dieticians recommend making a list before you go grocery shopping to avoid too many impulse purchases. In the same vein, when you first start evaluating types of help desk ticketing systems, try making a list of what you want and which processes you’d like to upgrade.

Consider thinking about:

  • Deal-breakers – List the tension points you absolutely want your help desk software to solve. For example, maybe you need a system that can help you speed up your customer response times by 25%. An effective help desk system should make tangible improvements to your current system that maximizes customer satisfaction rates.
  • Wish-list – List the benefits you’d like, but don’t need. Maybe you want service desk software that can provide customizable metrics but could make a more standardized system work if you had to. Whatever it is, put it on the list—the available options might surprise you.
  • Parameters – Many service desk systems allow you to customize your software. List any external parameters like the level of information technology support you’d require, your budget, or whether you want to prioritize high-level information security or cloud-based accessibility. 

When you know your needs, it’s easier to find a system that meets them. Some systems like Syncro even offer a free trial period to ensure you choose a system that truly meets your needs and improves your business.

Once you’ve articulated your goals and requirements for your help desk system, start looking into specific systems and their benefits.


Understanding the Four Types of Help Desk

The four types of help desk ticketing systems each have different pros and cons. Understanding the differences between each option will help you find the one that works best for you:

  • Cloud-based – With cloud-based systems, you pay a regular subscription fee to use help-desk software hosted on a cloud. Typically that fee covers IT support, data security, and general up-keep. The lower start-up costs can make it a promising option for small companies. However, it requires internet access and offers limited customizations. In the rare cases when something goes wrong with a specific cloud-based service, that will affect every company that uses the service until that service can fix the issue.
  • Self-hosted – Also called “on-premise,” self-hosted software can be purchased by your company and then run on your own servers. This requires more initial expense and requires you to have your own internal IT support. However, it can also provide you with more control over your data security and allow for more customizations tailored to your needs as a business.
  • Open-source – An open-source service shares its code publicly and often makes improvements based on community input. It’s typically free or low-cost to acquire and you can customize it to suit your needs. However, you’ll need your own IT team to implement and maintain it. Additionally, the publicly available code can make it more vulnerable to attacks from hackers. 
  • Enterprise – Vendors design enterprise help desks to support large companies. While they can cost more than a cloud-based or open-source option, enterprise help desk benefits include customizations, advanced features, and continual IT support. In addition to supporting a customer request, vendors design enterprise help desk software features to work smoothly for help desk agents of all experience levels. That said, a more specialized system typically requires more specific training, which should factor into your onboarding process.

Depending on your needs, any one of these options could help grow your business. 

For example, cloud-based software could work ideally for a small but growing business with lower data security needs, like a clothing brand. Self-hosted software often works well for large, established companies with specific security needs they can invest funds and personnel in creating, like a large pharmaceutical company. Self-hosted can work brilliantly if you’ve got a tighter budget, an IT whiz on staff, and lower security needs, like a mid-sized arts non-profit. 

Software companies like Syncro can offer an ideal meeting point for many companies. Enterprise software provides customizations, advanced features, and security like self-hosted software does. At the same time, we offer the tech support and scalability of cloud-based software.

Whatever your customer communication needs, there’s a help desk system for you.


Improve Your Bottom Line With Syncro Help Desk Software

Ultimately, an efficient help desk system will provide your company with operational organization, communication automation, ticket tracking, and metric analysis whether you opt for cloud-based, self-hosted, open-source, or enterprise software.

We know finding the perfect help desk platform can feel overwhelming. After all, you and your customers will interact with whatever system you select all day, every day.

That’s why we offer a one-on-one demonstration of our software, followed by a full-featured free trial. We want you to have all of the information you need to make the best possible choice for you and your company. 

Our software fully integrates PSA, RMM, and remote tools to streamline your team’s work day. We designed our powerful software specifically for IT pros and MSPs. At the same time, our intuitive interface helps your team smoothly transition to our software, regardless of their personal experience levels with help desk systems.

We want to transform the way IT professionals work. 

From helping someone begin to learn about service desk and live chat software systems to supporting a client during their busiest time of the year, we always work to create value for you and your company.


Ian Alexander

Ian Alexander

Co-founder and Channel Chief at Syncro. Always trying to find ways to help MSPs. Former MSP tech and break-fix owner. Basketball player, human and dog dad. Grew up in Berkeley, living in Sacramento.

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