The Modern Service Desk

4 min readSep 2, 2021

Your organisation is looking to implement a Service Desk and now it’s time for you and your team to analyze your needs, what the market offers and select the right one for you.

But what makes a modern Service Desk? And what is the difference between a Service Desk and a Help Desk?

Service Desk vs Help Desk

We’ll get straight to the point — Help Desk is a part of the umbrella which Service Desk is covering. Service Desk includes several areas related to serving requests that have to do with everything from onboarding a new employee to laptop support and serving proper documentation to end-users.

Help Desk itself is focusing on solving incidents with remediation actions, typically with a heavy focus on IT incidents.

To sum up, Service Desk covers a broader set of topics to be handled with a solution that is normally submitted to a system that tracks each incoming request using a ticketing system to map each request to a unique ticket ID.

The traditional Service Desk

Looking back a set of years on what Service Desk really is and you will notice that it hasn’t changed that much. The major difference is that the majority of the products have moved to be SaaS offerings and more automation is available.

You still work distanced from your users within a system where you receive a ticket, make contact, pull in the right resources and provide a remediation solution to it. The system provides you with a possibility to have an overview, with internal comments and public replies to be made.

The wave that impacted products the most was when Intercom started to get traction with its communication platform that focused more on customer engagement through a messaging platform. This started to attract people to use the chat functionality on applications and websites for service desk cases.

The new era with Slack and conversations

Slack was released in 2013 and started to change the way companies communicate internally. From using Skype, organizations moved to the new era of using their Slack workspace to be the place for everyone at the company to hangout.

Suddenly you could have all your colleagues gathered in different channels focusing on specific topics, such as Sales, Tech, Marketing. While at the same time having off-topic discussion in one channel and what-do-we-eat-for-lunch discussions in another channel.

Larger organizations could come together in a new way, breaking the walls within and between teams as digital conversations became the most natural thing.

By stepping up digital conversations, teams using Slack moved closer together and collaboration and communication improved.

Why the user experience counts

The experience when working with a Service Desk is what counts — it needs to be positive both for those who remediates cases and the person who submitted it. Companies are making use of Net Promoter Score (NPS) to get an understanding on how good the service experience was when contacting their Service Desk. The higher NPS score they give, the more likely that they would recommend it.

When picking a Service Desk for your organisation, it needs to come down to what kind of experience you want to achieve. Service Desk is not only about a traditional ticketing system, but it’s about the experience you can achieve for users submitting and remediating.

One of the most common things that people mention when they have had a bad experience working with a Service Desk is that it took way too long to have their case handled. What is not as often mentioned is that this is most likely the same for the responding user (agent).

A slow process internally to deal with team-to-team communication and escalations, will result in frustrated responding users (as they can’t deliver a proper reply to the submitter) due to slowness.

The modern Service Desk

Service Desk for the new era is built to align well with how users today are collaborating and communicating. It’s not necessarily about features, but rather how the Service Desk solution is fitting into your users workflow and where your users are spending most of their time.

Traditional solutions have always required the users to move away in order to add their input, make a note or finalize the official response based on a longer dialogue with several parties.

One big problem has always been that users are being forced to have all of the conversations related to a Service Desk distanced from the actual Service Desk solution. These conversations create context and include important details about the case that helps everyone to get a better understanding of it, hence why it is important to keep the context.

The modern Service Desk is built for today’s era and aligned closely to your conversations. It is a conversion based Service Desk that includes valuable context of each case directly in the solution and built for a superb experience for all users involved.

It allows everyone involved with the Service Desk, both on the requesting and on the responding side, to achieve a great experience.

By having it as an integrated part of your existing conversations, every team can implement it easily into their process and be naturally aligned with it directly.

About Ben

Ben works as a Business Experience Manager at Suptask which builds a native Slack ticketing system that provides next-generation Service Desk for companies. With several years helping companies with their Customer Success and Service Desk strategy, Ben carries an extensive experience making customers stay happy.