Competing brands usually focus on price and quality when trying to make their products or services stand out. However, in today’s business environment, another factor that deserves attention is customer experience (CX). If you’re a business owner, not only do you have to present product-oriented advertisements but also adopt strategies to improve your customer experience.
Fortunately, technology is on your side. Service desk software like Jira Service Desk helps teams deliver timely and efficient end-to-end customer service that can positively impact customer interactions. The vendor offers free trials for its standard and premium paid accounts, but you can also create a free account for up to three agents and with an unlimited number of customers.
In this article, we’ll give you a rundown of the free features included in the software and then provide you with our take on Jira Service Desk limitations. This will help you decide if the features you get with the free account are enough for your team’s requirements.
Keeping your customers or users happy has a direct impact on your business success. Consequently, an efficient support desk plays a huge role in achieving this goal. If you’re able to provide high-quality customer experience, not only can you attract new customers but also increase revenue and customer retention rates.
Moreover, customer experience as a deciding factor in making a purchase ranks high globally among consumers. For example, 75% of Americans base their buying decisions on CX. In China and Brazil, the figures are higher. Eighty-seven and 89%, respectively. Indeed, whether you’re running a small support team for your ecommerce business or you’re an IT professional operating a help desk with a large user base, providing excellent customer experience should be a top priority. This is where a reliable and robust service desk software can mean the difference between success or failure.
The benefits of service desk software are not only for customers but also for your agents. Customers can have an easy way to contact your support team and get their issues resolved, while your agents can have the tools they need to deliver excellent support and shorten the time between receiving a complaint to its resolution.
Jira Service Desk is a modern service desk software developed by Atlassian and designed to help companies provide both internal and external support and ITSM (IT Service Management) solutions. Customers use the platform to reach out to your support team. They can do this by sending requests via email or using a widget to access your FAQs or knowledge base whenever they have a question about your service or product. With Jira Service Desk free features like automated alerts, your support agents can work on these requests, track their progress, and make sure they are resolved as quickly as possible.
On the other hand, your employees use the service desk to report technical issues they might be encountering with your business apps or network systems to your IT support. IT managers, administrators, and developers can then address the issues and make the necessary updates and incident reports using the platform as well.
Some of the key features of Jira Service Desk include customizable queues, SLAs, and custom automation rules. These features are designed to help managers and support agents stay on top of daily operations by making sure urgent requests are prioritized and those that are pending are forwarded to the right expert for resolution. Other features, such as real-time reporting and analytics will give you a visual representation of how your team is performing and if your most important KPIs are being met.
Furthermore, the software has ITIL-certified processes and is well-known for its open-source interface. This makes it easy to customize the app your company’s specific purpose, including request, incident, and change management. As a result, SMEs and enterprises alike often implement Jira Service Desk as their primary tool for tracking bugs and other software development issues.
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Customer support teams can receive literally thousands of service requests in a single day. These are often low-risk requests like software licenses, reset passwords, or access to applications. They can also be repetitive and can be expedited or even automated.
Jira’s service request management feature can help streamline your service request workflow by leveraging automation. It starts with an ITIL-recommended workflow that you can customize or standardize according to your company’s processes. This feature can make your operations more efficient and become really helpful when dealing with customer service seasonal rush.
With the incident management feature, you can quickly respond and resolve incidents that occur in your business. These can be major disruptions like an entire web service crashing or a few numbers of your users experiencing intermittent errors.
Moreover, this feature allows your DevOps and IT Operations teams to track incidents and continuously learn from them. They’ll be able to respond faster to unplanned events and resolve sudden service interruptions. You can quickly start creating your own incident management workflow by using the platform’s customizable ITIL-compliant incident management workflow.
Every IT team deals with constant changes in IT infrastructure. This is why Jira Service Desk free features include change management. This feature is essential to helping you control changes in your systems. Additionally, it ensures that support agents and internal IT members follow a standardized process in handling change requests.
With this feature, you can configure change approvals, depending on the type of change and compliance with the procedures laid down by your company’s change-advisory board. A default workflow is available on the platform, which ensures change managers can record, review, approve, and implement change requests. You can always adapt the workflow based on your team’s needs.
The problem management feature prioritizes problems that have the biggest potential for causing a major disruption to critical IT services. It has a root cause analysis function, which allows you to link problem tickets to incident tickets. This lets you identify recurring issues so you can investigate the root cause of the problem.
Another great tool is the reporting capabilities included in this feature. With reporting, you can receive data on important metrics, such as top recurring problems per month or the number of incidents related to a problem record.
The Jira workflow has statuses and transitions that tell you where issues move through its lifecycle. The platform has built-in workflows that are not editable, but you can use them as references fo create your own based on your project needs.
Jira makes it easy to create, edit, and configure workflows with its drag-and-drop fields and visual editor. You can set up complex processes or common tasks and associate these workflows with a particular project or specific issue type using workflow schemes.
When customers send in requests or inquiries, you can view them as queues in the platform. Having control over queues is crucial to improving the efficiency of your operations.
Jira Service Desk has default queues that allow agents to better prioritize incoming requests. Administrators can modify queues to effectively triage and assign tasks or requests to specific agents or teams. You’ll be able to see how many requests are in each queue and switch between them, depending on the urgency of the request.
With a multi-language support feature, you can meet the language preferences of your customers. You can set your service desk default language based on the native language of the majority of your customers. It’s also possible to add translations so you can serve clients in different languages.
Major languages supported in Jira include English, Spanish, Mandarin Chinese, French, German, Russian, and Portuguese. There is also language support for Danish, Swedish, Norwegian, Italian, Polish, Japanese, and Korean.
A self-service portal allows you to provide on-demand support to your customers without them needing to interact with an agent. It’s also beneficial to your employees because they can quickly find answers and resolve issues they encounter without passing it to another colleague. Common self-service resources include a knowledge base, FAQs, and online forums.
Jira Service Desk has email and widget support for its self-service portal. Requests or incident reports sent via email are automatically added to your queues. The widget can be embedded on websites, so your visitors can access your knowledge base or FAQs if they have questions or issues about your product.
To add content to your self-service portal, you’ll need to set up your company’s knowledge base. Project administrators can create knowledge base resources where team members can share articles, FAQs, how-tos, and other references. You’ll need to add Confluence, which is collaboration software also developed by Atlassian, in order to integrate a knowledge base in Jira Service Desk.
Jira Service Desk comes with pre-set automation rules that not only lighten the workloads of your agents by handling mundane, repetitive tasks but also enhance workflows in your help desk. Automated actions are executed based on specific conditions and triggers.
For example, you can use the Urgent Issue Alert pre-set automation rule if you would like to have a team member notified when a customer sends an urgent request. If one of your SLAs is about to get breached, you can use the At-risk SLA Alert to automatically notify an administrator or team member of the problem before it occurs. Finally, when an issue has been resolved for a customer, the Closed Resolved Issue rule can kick-in and close the issue within 10 days.
Customers usually equate positive CX with responsiveness. The SLA management feature is designed to help you meet your SLA by making sure the most important issues are prioritized.
SLA management can track progress like “resolve high-priority issues within 24 hours” or “respond to all requests within 2 hours.” Administrators can use time or goal metrics when configuring SLAs. Time metrics track the time between two points in an issue (example: start time when a request is received, pause when waiting for the customer to respond). Goal metrics, on the other hand, track specific issues, how quickly you want to resolve them, and your team’s specific working hours.
To better track your team’s performance against your SLAs, Jira Service Desk also has powerful reporting and analytics tools. You can choose from a set of templates that include the most common IT requirements or you can customize your own to help monitor specific team goals such as SLA success rates, Time to Resolution, or customer satisfaction rating.
You get superb flexibility with your service desk software with 900+ apps from the Atlassian Marketplace ready to integrate with Jira Service Desk. You can easily connect it with your CRM software, Google products, or communication and collaboration tools like Slack and Trello.
Moreover, with the platform’s REST API, developers can integrate the software into other applications. This is also useful to administrators who want to automate workflows or assign permissions and roles to users accessing the software.
For the free account, you’ll have access to self-help resources you can use to keep your system running smoothly. You can also ask questions and participate in online discussions about Jira Service Desk using the Atlassian Community site.
The features included in the free account of Jira Service Desk are mostly the same features you’ll get when you sign up for their paid subscriptions. This means that even without spending a dime, you can already have the tools you need to operate a well-run customer help desk. Having said that, there are indeed some Jira Service Desk limitations we need to mention.
First, the free account is limited to three agents, which can be enough if you’re just running a small, home-based business. But as soon as you scale up, you’ll need to opt for one of their paid plans. On the upside, you do get live technical support once you sign up for the Standard or Premium plans.
Second, you’ll have to integrate Jira Service Desk with Confluence–Atlassian’s collaboration software–in order to create content for your knowledge base. Though this can be an additional cost, you might also want to consider the integration. That’s because Confluence has a direct workflow that turns issues received in Jira Service Desk into published entries in your knowledge base.
Finally, it’s surprising that Jira Service Desk doesn’t come with a lot of social media access for customers. This despite the fact that 63% of customers expect companies to be accessible via social media and up to 40% are willing to spend more on brands who actively engage in social media. Currently, the only integration available is for Hootsuite.
We hope you gained insights to help you decide if Jira Service Desk is right for your needs. If your organization is already using several products from Atlassian, your team can easily adjust to Jira’s user interface; thus, you won’t need to deal with a steep learning curve once you start using the platform. Additionally, its powerful automation features, ITIL-certified framework, and compatibility with hundreds of products in the Atlassian Marketplace make Jira Service Desk a strong contender when it comes to choosing a robust service desk software.
Though there are a few limitations and features that we would have wanted to see included in the software, these can be easily addressed by workarounds like integrating it with another app. Remember also that every software will have its pros and cons. So, we recommend you take advantage of Jira Service Desk free trial. This will help you understand how you can use the different features to your team’s benefit.
Overall, Jira Service Desk has the essential features to help your support agents and IT team provide efficient technical support and effectively manage all its ITSM requirements. Should you want to know more about its free app, you can check our review of the Jira free plan for small teams.
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