What is helpdesk software? As the customer support industry has continued to grow with global businesses and develop alongside cloud computing, helpdesk apps are more widely available, more user-friendly, and — as data has proven — more effective than ever before. We’ve come a long way from the manual entry of handwritten forms in order to log them as tickets. SaaS desks are the wave of the future, and many of the changes in helpdesk apps over the years have been purely technical. But there’s a secret history of helpdesk software, too, and we’d like to share it with you. Because if it weren’t for this secret history, then the ClickDesk live chat and helpdesk app wouldn’t be here today.
Two Histories, Side-by-Side
There’s the technical side of customer support technology, and then there’s the personal side. Software helps you organize and prioritize tickets, so nothing gets lost in the shuffle. There are now tons of free apps that install in minutes and do what it used to take a whole IT team to do, let alone the extra hours spent by agents to deal with complicated databases. While a few companies are holding on to their on-premise helpdesk, SaaS solutions for customer support are everywhere these days since they provide a streamlined solution that’s easy to access from anywhere, anytime.
But the other side of the cloud-computing coin has revealed a change in the human element behind effective customer communications. Helpdesk software has evolved to make both customers and agents happier and more successful.
Is customer happiness really a secret? No, of course not (or at least it shouldn’t be).
But it’s an often overlooked fact that the entire global helpdesk industry has shifted from just resolving issues to an emphasis on creating happy, dedicated customers (sometimes called “product evangelists”), and providing friendly, knowledgeable customer support at every stage in the customer journey.
It’s been a move from “The customer is always right, so just solve their problem and move on” to “Customer are at the heart of our business, so if we focus on their happiness, our business will thrive and we’ll continue to make an even better product or provide an even more innovative service.” It starts with making it easy for web visitors, whether new leads or known customers, to reach the right department at the right time.
Chatting with customers in real-time is now second nature to successful online businesses around the world, but it didn’t used to be this way. The first helpdesk software focused on resolving customer issues without ever communicating with them in real time. Customers like to choose their own channels for communication with your company — that’s why we built an email helpdesk into ClickDesk software — and over the past few years, both web visitors and support agents have come to rely on real-time conversations including voice, video and text chats. With new features like screen sharing, these conversations can be extremely efficient and productive.
Sometimes real-time support helps close a sale, sometimes it helps explain to a longtime customer the benefits of upgrading. Some customers will just use your email helpdesk and never reach out in real time, but you know what? If you didn’t offer a real-time option, then those same customers would probably try to find one! The point is that customers need to know that they can reach you if they need to, and that you’ll be happy to help.
Helpdesk Solutions for Small Businesses
Where we are now in the history of helpdesk development is that tools once only available to enterprises and the Fortune 500 are now becoming available to smaller businesses across the board, whether SMBs, SMEs or mom-and-pop shops.
It is truly a humbling experience to hear from ClickDesk customers all over the world who started their small businesses on a shoestring and are now able to provide world-class customer support and ticket resolution using just a laptop and some carefully chosen SaaS apps. As a result, smaller businesses are on the road to giving big business a run for its money. This is at the heart of the secret history of helpdesk software: accessibility to businesses of any size.
Really, it’s a small business revolution. We are certainly not the only SaaS tool for SMBs looking for integrated solutions for customer engagement, nor would we want to be. Just like Zendesk integrates with MailChimp, for example, ClickDesk’s helpdesk also integrates with the Zendesk helpdesk app and Mailchimp email marketing software. Zapier integration opens the doors to even more customized automations.
There is only so much room in each blog post, so we didn’t even go into social media as a part of the secret history of helpdesk software, but follow us on Twitter for the daily updates on customer service best practices.