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Open Source Help Desk

Starting from Scratch: Open Source Help Desk

What is an open source help desk?

An open source help desk or open source ticketing software is an internal system used by a company that is built on free and openly available source code. While it is free for users to download, there are other high costs associated with building, modifying, and maintaining open source software.

Zendesk provides a safety net and is here to help. With open source software, there's no dynamic support.

A different approach

Help desks are a way for IT departments to manage the process of responding to internal requests for support. They help IT professionals manage workflow and offer internal customers visibility into the progress of their requests for support. Many of these software offerings include self-service features, so customers can choose to find answers on their own if they’d like. Since they streamline the process of submitting tickets and solving technical problems for employees, productivity for users is greatly increased.

However, some companies choose not to make the appropriate investment in IT software, which can extend to not investing in thesoftware. This forces some IT departments to use free open source software. While this is a free option up front, IT must then build the help desk from scratch, costing time and resources. And if something goes wrong or they wish to make an update, they must do so themselves.

Best practices

Choosing a SaaS Help Desk over something open sourced will have a variety of benefits. Most importantly, IT doesn't have to build one from scratch. They can begin with software that's already built and customize it for their users’ needs and tickets. And when there are technical problems they need help with or updates they would like to make, they can work with the provider instead of making changes or fixes themselves.

The right time

Many companies feel the strain of internal support tickets and mistakenly assume it will be more cost efficient to use open source software. However, the costs over time of using such software will be much higher, and will lead to decreased productivity amongst users. Any company looking to provide great internal customer service should consider avoiding an open source software option.
An example of an Open API help desk software by Zendesk.

How Zendesk helps

Zendesk's customer support offerings includes an open platform and open API, so there's lots of flexibility to make changes and integrate with other systems. Ticket management and tracking are easy, both for the company and customers. Zendesk’s services and success team can help companies customize all of their content based on support. Developers love Zendesk's interface and it's open platform, which leads to a “best of both worlds” scenario: they get a trusted solution with plenty of flexibility but don't have to build a help desk from scratch. Zendesk provides a safety net and is here to help whereas with open source, there's no support.

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