Tips for choosing your helpdesk vendor
Helpdesk technology is one of the most valuable tools in the CX environment today. As the world of customer service becomes more complex and “omnichannel”, teams need an aligned environment for accessing valuable information, and tracking support tickets.
Helpdesks bring everything your employees need to deliver exceptional service together in one easy-to-use environment. The right tools can make it easier to track customer conversations across platforms from SMS to social media. They also provide knowledgebase articles, self-service tools, automations, and bots to boost agent efficiency.
The question is, how do you choose a helpdesk vendor you can trust in 2022? As demand for helpdesk technology increases, the available options on the market are evolving too. Here are some quick steps to help you choose the right vendor this year.
First things first, you’re going to need to determine who you’re going to be serving with your helpdesk technology. The first fundamental audience you’re going to be looking at is your employees. Helpdesk environments are primarily intended to make life easier for your team members, so they can manage customer service requests more effectively.
With this in mind, think about how your team members are likely to be using your helpdesk tools. Which platforms do they need to align in a unified inbox to track customer conversations (SMS, email, voice, etc)? What kind of resources will they need to have available within the helpdesk to ensure they can deliver the right service, such as knowledgebase articles and bots?
You may even want to look into tools to help your employees remain as productive as possible when working in a remote or hybrid environment. Troubleshooting tools and service desk technology built into the helpdesk can make it easier for team members to solve technology problems without IT help.
If you’re going to be serving an audience of B2B customers, there’s a good chance you’ll need to think about installing a customer service portal too. This is a portal within your helpdesk where users can submit and track ticket requests, access self-service features, and even check FAQ articles.
After you know who you’re serving with your helpdesk solution, and what they’re likely to need, the next step is making sure everything can align with your existing CX tools. A helpdesk is just one component of a comprehensive service strategy. If you want to be able to align all of your customer data and service requests in one place, you’re going to need your desk to integrate with your CCaaS ecosystem. Make sure you can collect data from all the contact centre tools you use.
Since helpdesks are also a source of useful information for employees and customers alike, it’s worth ensuring you can link other applications and tools into the environment too. You may want to connect your helpdesk to your ERP system, or implement stock tracking tools so you can give your customers an update on their order in seconds.
One of the most common tools to connect with your helpdesk technology is a CRM (customer relationship management) platform. This will give your agents a complete view into your customers and their previous purchases. The more information your agents have about each client, the more they can personalise and contextualise the support strategy.
Once you know your vendor can align your tools with your existing strategy for customer service, the next step is examining the available features on offer. Most helpdesks will come with a handful of consistent features, like omnichannel inbox alignment, so you can track a customer conversation and service request across multiple platforms and stages.
However, as helpdesk solutions become more advanced, we’re also seeing an increase in the number of additional tools offered to make teams more efficient. You might want to consider:
Other potential features you might want to consider include built-in CRM technology, calling tools, and even collaboration features to keep your hybrid workers synchronised.
Every company and customer base is different. As you learn more about your audience, the way you manage service requests as a team, and your workforce, you may need to adapt your helpdesk accordingly. A flexible vendor will allow you to embed new integrations, or use API connections to link different tools together for productivity purposes.
Flexibility in a vendor also means you can deliver more options to your agents for how they view and manage support requests. For instance, a leading helpdesk tool might allow you to set up automatic routing strategies to send tickets to specific agents based on priority. You can even allow your agents to customise their own dashboards and to-do lists with certain tools.
A flexible solution will allow you to adapt your helpdesk to suit the specific needs of your employees, even if you’re shifting into a new mode of work, like hybrid or remote working. It should also ensure you can embed more intelligent and innovative tools as your company grows. For instance, you might use your helpdesk to build a powerful chatbot for customer service in the future.
Finally, any great helpdesk vendor should be able to offer you exceptional peace of mind. A helpdesk deals with huge amounts of business and customer data on a regular basis. This is excellent for providing you with insights into your audience and team. However, it also means you need to be cautious about how data is managed and stored.
Ensure your helpdesk vendor can give you complete control over how people access data in your helpdesk, and where that information is stored for compliance purposes. It’s also worth looking for a vendor that adheres to the latest guidelines and regulations in your industry.
If you have specific concerns about things like data sovereignty, you can always contact your vendor to discuss the way data is managed in the helpdesk, and what you can control.