In continuation of my Help desk Software series (Also read: What is a Help desk Ticketing System and Why is it important), today, we will be talking about some things that the companies need to keep in mind before buying a help desk solution.
We will be categorizing the checklist into two categories, namely – at the business level and, at the technology level.
At The Business Level
Before starting the search for the best available help desk software, the stakeholders need to do an internal analysis. Be clear on what you want and why you want it. Let us look at some things that an organization needs to internally look into before evaluating different help desk solution vendors.
#1. Know Your Requirement: Analyse your current support process and select the essential features that must be there for the organization to meet its customer service experience goals.
#2. Know Customer Expectations: Know your customer base. Figure out their current level of satisfaction with your business. Know what channels they prefer to contact the customer support – are they active on social media, or like to email or if they are comfortable with self-serving tools.
#3. Know Your Employees: Understand the skill-set of your employees and based on that go for a help desk software which will empower the agents and not prove to be an obstacle on a daily basis. There needs to be an internal buy-in from the agents’ side as well to reach the customer experience goals.
#4. Know Your Budget: Don’t fall into the trap – the higher the price, better the solution. Look for a solution which solves the requirements, but at the same time, is within the budget as even after installing the help desk software there might be future costs pertaining to scaling up operations or integrating.
At the Technology Level
Now that you are aware of what you want, make sure you shortlist the vendors in alignment with that. Following is a checklist of all the things one needs to be mindful of to make the buying decision easier.
#1. Software Features: The ticketing system is the main requirement. Make sure the vendor provides all the essential features that your business requires – assigning, reassigning, escalating, re-sending, routing, closing, tickets. The more feature and capabilities that the solution has, better control it will provide.
#2. Supported Channels: Check if the solution supports multiple channels – email, voice, live chat, social media, SMS, etc. The idea is to make it easier for the customers to reach your business with ease. Thus, the help desk solution needs to support all the channels that your customers prefer.
#3.Customization: Can the solution be molded to your specific business and industrial sector requirement or is it a standard solution for all. The software needs to adjust to the current business processes.
#4. Integration tools: It is not easy or desirable to invest heavily each time that a new technology is adopted. Make sure that the help desk solution integrates with existing business applications and systems – homegrown or third-party.
#5. Reporting and Analytics: It is important to get a bird’s eye view of the functioning of your contact center. Make sure the help desk solution offers detailed, drilled down reports as well as real-time data to enable your managers to analyze and make spontaneous decisions.
#6. Ease of Use: Does the software require any additional technical skills that the agents do not possess currently?Does it require high-level training? One needs to answer these questions before making the purchase. Change is good, but if the software is extremely difficult to use or has complex user interface then it will only prove to be a bane than a boon.
#7. Collaboration: A good help desk solution is the one which promotes and enables collaborative work. There is be no silos.The agents should be able to work with other agents, they should be able to connect with other departments as well as the customers effectively.
#8.Security: Is your company’s and customer’s data secure? The software should use data encryption to secure the information. This is one of the most important prerequisites. Your customers trust you with their information, any breach of that will not just hamper the operations but the reputation of the company.
#9. Scalability: Every business strives to grow by leaps and bound. Make sure the software allows that. It should be easy to scale up and add features as the business grows. Else, it is pointless to invest in something which will become obsolete in future, without any scope of improvement.
Support Team: The support team of the vendor needs to be responsive and sensitive to the business requirements. These are the people you will be reaching out to in case of distress. Thus, make sure they have a well-equipped and robust team in place who is up to the task.
Take time to evaluate and finalize a customer service help desk. This is not something that you want to invest in on a whim and then regret later. Having the right help desk software will not just impact the customer satisfaction levels. But, will ensure the smooth functioning of your Contact center operation. Thus, be sure before you adopt something new to your employees.