Skip to main content

Article 7 min read

What is an enterprise help desk, and how does it benefit your team?

Legacy support solutions aren’t cutting it in today’s digital age. Here are the tools you need to meet your customers’ expectations, at scale.

By Liz Bauer

Last updated October 18, 2023

When’s the last time you called a major corporation and hung up, thinking, “Wow, what amazing customer service!”

Mature enterprise companies often struggle to meet customer expectations. They’re often slow to integrate their customer service software with new support channels and integrations. Partially, this is because legacy brands still rely on the traditional methods they were founded upon.

But in today’s digital-first age, phone and email alone simply don’t cut it.

The challenge is finding software that you can adopt quickly at scale, without increasing operational costs. One that allows your agents to work smarter, more efficiently, and more collaboratively. Only then can you deliver consistent and personalized enterprise customer service.

Allow me to introduce a beautiful thing called an enterprise help desk.

What is an enterprise help desk?

Broadly, a help desk is an all-in-one platform for providing support and self-service across channels, both for customers and employees.

An enterprise help desk (also known as an enterprise service desk) is the same solution, only scaled for large corporations (1,000+ employees).

Chris Grosspietsch, Senior Manager of Advocacy Operations at Zendesk, explains the concept of help desk support perfectly when he says, “A help desk can mean many things, depending on the nature of your business. But it all goes back to the core principle of helping people and serving as a place where they can go to get help.”

Digital-first enterprise companies resolve customer support tickets more than 40% faster than their legacy counterparts. Their secret: using enterprise help desk software to manage workflows more efficiently.

Enterprise help desk resolution times


These advanced tools sync all your systems, channels, and records into one platform. This means your agents have complete customer context from a single view.

Enterprise help desks can support both your employees and your customers. They typically include features like:

These features are only a fraction of what enterprise help desks can do for your organization. This software helps large organizations manage complex workflows without compromising productivity or customer satisfaction.

Still not convinced? Take a look at some of the key benefits below.

4 benefits of an enterprise help desk

You might be thinking, “Adopt and successfully implement a completely new solution? With 5,000 employees across several countries? That’ll be the day.”

Well, today’s that day. Enterprise help desks are designed to solve the key customer service challenges of large and rapidly expanding companies. And with the right provider, they’re easy to implement at scale.

Boost efficiency with improved agent workflows

Enterprise companies support a lot of customers in many different ways. To provide fast, reliable service, agents need tools to simplify their complex workflows.

Skills-based routing automatically directs tickets to the most capable agents. No one receives a ticket they can’t handle, making it easier to fly through a higher volume of inquiries.

Skills-based routing helps teams do more with less

Enterprise companies who use skills-based routing have more than twice the ticket-to-agent ratio than those who don’t, despite handling 50% more tickets.

Enterprise help desks also boost agent productivity by pulling up the resources agents need, based on the issue they’re solving. In Zendesk Support, we call this feature “Contextual Workspaces.”

Contextual Workspaces example

When you open a ticket with Contextual Workspaces, you’ll only see the macros relevant to the ticket at hand:

Returns workspace demo

You can also create unique ticket interfaces that pull up the exact form the customer used to submit their request.

If you’re using Zendesk’s enterprise help desk, our knowledge capture app will automatically suggest knowledge base articles based on the ticket. This means agents can:

  • Provide a resource to help customers solve their problems in one click

  • Handle a higher volume of tickets

Streamline self-service with improved knowledge-base management

63% of customers always (or almost always) start with a search of a company’s online resources when they have an issue.

2020 Zendesk Customer Experience Trends Report

For enterprise companies, the challenge is managing a system for creating and updating those resources in real time.

With Zendesk Team Publishing, your agents can:

  • Suggest improvements to knowledge base articles

  • Update articles personally

  • Add entirely new resources

You can assign publishing permissions to specific agents to control the quality of content you’re sharing. That way, any agent can write and submit a knowledge base resource they think will benefit customers—but only a qualified SME (subject matter expert) can approve it.

“The Team Publishing workflow allowed us to streamline our knowledge creation process by making it much easier for agents to create articles and have them reviewed. Articles which once took a week to publish are now live in 1-2 days. Our team loves the ability to assign an article to someone for review, which sends an automatic email notification so they know there’s something waiting for them without having to monitor the queue.”
Mary Paez, Knowledge Manager, Veeva Systems [source]

You can also set triggers that notify SMEs when it’s time to verify content and ensure that it’s up to date.

The best part is, some enterprise help desks use AI to analyze knowledge base content. At Zendesk, we call this feature Content Cues. The technology can:

  • Suggest archiving content that isn’t performing well

  • Flag top-performing content for regular upkeep

Collaborate seamlessly across your organization

Customer support agents often need a coworker’s or manager’s involvement to resolve a ticket. The agent might need to get approval on a customer discount or confirm billing details. Enterprise help desks streamline this communication by enabling side conversations (chats) within the ticket view itself.

For example, Zendesk’s Collaboration Add-on allows agents to communicate with any internal team member— like an in-house SME— without leaving the ticket view.

Collaboration workflow

With this feature, customer support agents can quickly get the answers they need without transferring the customer to another agent or department. This increases first contact resolution and improves overall customer satisfaction.

Get up and running in less than 30 days

Adopting a new customer support solution can seem like a daunting undertaking, especially for an established enterprise. But it doesn’t have to be.

At Zendesk, we’ve built an entire team dedicated to helping enterprise companies adopt innovative, modern customer support solutions. Our proven customer service adoption paths can help you get started in less than 30 days.

“The biggest benefit of Zendesk is that we can customize it exactly the way we need—from the triggers, business rules, and automations to the reporting and API. Zendesk allows us to build our workflows just right, exactly the way we want.”
Orlando Gadea Ros, Business Innovation Manager, Stanley Black & Decker

We’ll help you set goals and continuously scale operations through regular check-ins and reports. And we’ll use industry benchmarking to help you stay on the path to success.

Enterprise customer service is beyond challenging. You have to meet the growing expectations of thousands of customers, and within budget. Not to mention, it’s hard to maintain a personalized and consistent customer experience when over 1,000 agents are fielding tickets.

The path of least resistance is an agile and easily scalable tool—an enterprise help desk.

Determine your enterprise help desk staffing needs

When your business is growing rapidly, it can sometimes be hard for support teams to keep up with increasing volumes of employee or customer requests. Use the Zendesk staffing calculator to decide if you need to hire more staff to continue providing quality service.

Help desk staffing calculator


Weekly utilised hours for a full-time agent:
Total utilised hours (weekly):

Estimated full-time agents needed:


Average handle time calculator

Solves per hour:


Average handle time:


Disclaimer: The above formula should be used as a guide—it shouldn’t replace a typical workforce management staffing calculator. Teams will also need to consider factors such as breaks for agents, multiple shifts, and different customer requirements.

Building real, human relationships at scale

Without the right tools, processes, and technologies, it’s impossible to be human at scale.

Enterprise help desk software helps large companies:

  • Streamline collaboration between agents

  • Keep team members accountable

  • Centralize workflows

  • Engage employees

And with Zendesk, it’s easy to get up and running in no time. Request a demo, or speak with our team today.

Related stories

1 min read

Employee development plan: 6-step guide [free templates]

Discover the organizational impact of an employee development plan and how it can affect the employee experience. Use our free templates to get started today.

1 min read

Free customer persona templates and examples

A customer persona template can help your business better understand your customers. Download our free templates and create your own customer personas today.

12 min read

20 chatbot templates to improve your CX in 2024

Use these chatbot templates with AI-powered customer service software to provide fast, 24/7 customer support and improve agent productivity.

1 min read

How to write a customer apology letter: 25 templates + examples

An effective customer apology can prevent customer churn and even build customer loyalty. Get our free customer apology letter templates now.