Finding software can be overwhelming. Software Advice helps companies choose the right online help desk software to support their internal and external IT systems and endpoints.

Showing 1-20 of 309 products

SysAid

SysAid is a cloud-based IT Service Management, service desk and help desk solution that helps users in businesses of all sizes across various industries resolve technology relates issues. Key features include help desk automation,... Read more

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Recent recommendations: 37 recommendations

Platforms: MacWinLinux
Deployments: CloudOn premise
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SolarWinds Service Desk

SolarWinds Service Desk is suitable for companies seeking a help desk solution that offers IT service management (ITSM) functionalities. SolarWinds Service Desk offers comprehensive service desk functionality that helps businesses... Read more

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Recent recommendations: 30 recommendations

Platforms: MacWinLinux
Deployments: Cloud
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Zendesk

Zendesk is a cloud-based help desk management solution offering customizable tools to build customer service portal, knowledge base and online communities. The solution offers a customizable front-end portal, live chat features and... Read more

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Recent recommendations: 28 recommendations

Platforms: MacWinLinux
Deployments: Cloud
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InvGate Service Desk

InvGate Service Desk is an IT service management platform that offers help desk request fulfillment, customer service and support and self-service knowledge management. The system is compatible with Mac, Windows, and iPad (or other... Read more

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Recent recommendations: 21 recommendations

Platforms: MacWinLinux
Deployments: CloudOn premise
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BOSS Solutions

The BOSS Solutions Suite is a fully integrated ITIL based Service Desk/Help Desk and IT Asset Management solution available on-premise or on the cloud. It incorporates an award winning user-friendly interface and a powerful Service... Read more

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Recent recommendations: 12 recommendations

Platforms: MacWinLinux
Deployments: CloudOn premise
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TeamSupport

TeamSupport is a business-to-business (B2B) support software solution designed to help companies resolve individual tickets while building stronger customer relationships. The solution goes beyond ticket management to streamline customer... Read more

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Recent recommendations: 11 recommendations

Platforms: MacWinLinux
Deployments: Cloud
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Capacity

Capacity is a cloud-based help desk and knowledge base solution that utilizes AI-powered automation to enhance workflows and business processes for finance, insurance, manufacturing, software and education industries. Capacity's core... Read more

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Recent recommendations: 8 recommendations

Platforms: MacWinLinux
Deployments: Cloud
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Vivantio

Vivantio is a service management solution that allows users to create custom processes that align with internal business operations. Key features of the solution include dashboards, charts and reports, routing, assignments and forms... Read more

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Recent recommendations: 6 recommendations

Platforms: MacWinLinux
Deployments: Cloud
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Freshdesk

Freshdesk is a help desk system and customer service solution that simplifies customer service for your team and helps them provide a great customer experience.  By streamlining customer conversations from across channels, Freshdesk... Read more

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Recent recommendations: 4 recommendations

Platforms: MacWinLinux
Deployments: Cloud
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Freshservice

Freshservice is a cloud-based IT Help Desk and service management solution that enables organizations to simplify their IT operations. The solution offers features that include a ticketing system, self-service portal and knowledge-base.... Read more

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Recent recommendations: 4 recommendations

Platforms: MacWinLinux
Deployments: Cloud
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ChangeGear by SunView

ChangeGear by SunView is a cloud-based enterprise-level IT help desk solution that helps businesses to track, manage and control IT services. ChangeGear complies to ITIL standards and offers components for managing incidents, problems,... Read more

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Recent recommendations: 4 recommendations

Platforms: MacWinLinux
Deployments: CloudOn premise
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Syxsense Manage

Syxsense Manage is a cloud-based IT management and MSP software that allows administrators to configure and access in-network and out-of-network endpoints. Syxsense Manage allows service providers and IT professionals to discover and... Read more

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Recent recommendations: 4 recommendations

Platforms: MacWinLinux
Deployments: Cloud
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IncidentMonitor

IncidentMonitor is an information technology service management (ITSM) solution to support IT, ITIL and other business processes. It can be deployed on-premise or hosted in the cloud. The service management framework offers ITIL process... Read more

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Recent recommendations: 3 recommendations

Platforms: MacWinLinux
Deployments: CloudOn premise
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ManageEngine ServiceDesk Plus

ServiceDesk Plus is a help desk management platform. It includes core help desk and IT management applications, as well as project management, contract management and features for ITIL (information technology infrastructure library)... Read more

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Recent recommendations: 2 recommendations

Platforms: MacWinLinux
Deployments: CloudOn premise
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Simplisys Service Desk

Simplisys provides SaaS solution to organizations of all sizes, helping streamline processes for customer support, IT, HR and facilities teams. It is primarily designed to help teams communicate with customers and resolve issues. The... Read more

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Recent recommendations: 2 recommendations

Platforms: MacWinLinux
Deployments: CloudOn premise
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Bloomfire

Bloomfire is a cloud-based collaboration platform that aims to help enterprise employees search for information to do their jobs by connecting people with information and knowledge. Bloomfire delivers content management and social... Read more

Platforms: MacWinLinux
Deployments: Cloud
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HelpCrunch

HelpCrunch is a customer communication platform combining live chat, email marketing automation and a help desk in one solution. The solution helps support, sales and marketing teams to acquire, convert leads and support their customers.... Read more

Platforms: MacWinLinux
Deployments: Cloud
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PhaseWare Tracker

PhaseWare Tracker is a customer support and help desk solution. It automatically notifies users whenever clients report or escalate existing issues. Flexible deployment options include on-premise installation and a cloud-based option. Applications... Read more

Platforms: MacWinLinux
Deployments: CloudOn premise
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OnContact CRM

OnContact CRM is a mid-market customer relationship management (CRM) solution that can be deployed on-premise or in the cloud. OnContact includes complete sales automation, marketing automation, customer service and contact center... Read more

Platforms: MacWinLinux
Deployments: CloudOn premise
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Document360

Document360 is a cloud-based help desk solution that enables users in businesses across various industries to create, collaborate and publish self-service knowledge bases for their products. Features include content management, guided... Read more

Platforms: MacWinLinux
Deployments: Cloud
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Buyers guide


Last Updated: July 1, 2020

What's meant by the term "help desk software'" can be unclear. Go browse a handful of vendor websites, and you'll see the term "help desk" applied to two distinct groups of software—general customer service software and software for managing IT assets and services.

While customer service and help desk software do share some common applications—a central ticket-tracking system, for example—they are by no means interchangeable. If you were to purchase customer service software to manage your small business's IT endpoints and networks, you'd quickly regret the decision. And if you tried managing your company's customers with software designed to manage computers and networks, you'd regret that all the more!

This guide is about cloud-based help desk software for IT management. If you're looking for customer service software, take a look at our customer service software buyer's guide.

But, if you're looking to manage and support your internal IT assets, you're in the right place. Here's what we'll cover:

What Is Online Help Desk Software?
Common Features of Online Help Desk Software
What Type of Buyer Are You?
Market Trends to Understand

What Is Online Help Desk Software?

Online help desk software helps companies manage their entire IT infrastructure, which can include:

  • Individual endpoints, such as desktop computers, laptops and tablets
  • Peripherals, such as printers, scanners and POS systems
  • Back-end equipment, such as servers and backup storage systems
  • Networks and networking hardware, such as LANs, routers and Wi-Fi access points
  • Any software that keeps the business running and employees productive

This is an IT-centric definition. From the point of view of the employees who rely on IT, online help desk software is more about getting support for IT services. It's a small but important distinction we'll discuss more below in the Market Trends to Understand section.

Like most software, help desks began as on-premise (i.e., locally installed) software. Today, online help desk solutions are cloud-based, meaning that they're hosted, updated and maintained by the vendor. Many of these tools provide both cutting-edge functionality and user-friendly interfaces.

RemedyForce is an online help desk solution with a user-centric UI

RemedyForce is an online help desk solution that offers a user-centric interface

For most small businesses, online help desks are the smartest choice. They require little (or no) installation of local software, are automatically updated and patched by the vendor, have lower startup costs and provide the best end-user and administrator experiences.

Common Features of Online Help Desk Software

IT asset management Tracks and manages all physical IT hardware owned by (or used within) a business.
Network monitoring and management Helps administrators control and configure networks and network access, while monitoring traffic and connections.
Knowledge management Organizes the information, or knowledge, used by IT department employees. Can be used as a self-service resource for employees.
Configuration management Manages the settings and permissions configured on individual devices. Lets administrators apply configuration or settings changes to multiple devices at once.
Service catalog management A service catalog helps larger organizations guide their employees to the IT staff that can best support them. Service catalog management functions help administrators create and maintain these catalogs.
License management Helps companies track and make the best use of their software licenses.
Remote access and control Allows technicians to access and control a workstation from a remote location, facilitating remote diagnosis and resolution with minimal end-user involvement.
Impact analysis tools Analyzes planned changes for any potential conflicts, flagging possible conflicts before the changes get rolled out. Provides a “look before you leap" style safeguard.
Service level agreement (SLA) management SLAs guarantee that issues of a certain type will be addressed or resolved within a certain timeframe, among other service guarantees. These features allow users to set prioritization triggers, automatic escalations and other custom rules to ensure applicable issues are handled in compliance with an SLA.
ITIL compatibility Information Technology Infrastructure Library (ITIL) is a set of IT service management best practices that ensure service management is aligned with business priorities.

What Type of Buyer Are You?

Online help desk are generally used in two different business contexts:

Internal. This is traditionally the most common use. The help desk is the central platform for a company's internal IT department. It serves the company's local and remote employees. These buyers should look for platforms with core help desk functionality and determine requirements based on their company's IT environment, strategy and growth plans.

Managed service provider (MSP). Companies can outsource their IT services management to third-party companies called managed service providers, or MSPs. MSPs should look for help desk systems with more robust remote access and control applications and tools for managing and monitoring individual service level agreements.

Market Trends to Understand

Over the past decade, IT service management has undergone a change in perspective. It began as an IT-centric discipline in which problems and services were managed with a focus on the underlying assets and tools. With today's more modern approach, IT service management focuses on the workflows that the IT department supports.

This shift is also described as the consumerization of IT, a phrase explained in Gartner's "Elevate the Employee Experience With Consumer-Oriented IT Service Delivery" report. It states: "The consumerization of IT isn't so much about using consumer apps for business purposes. It's more about applying the tactics of consumerization to the IT fabric, so as to make employees more agile and engaged." (Full report available to Gartner clients.)

Selecting the right online help desk platform can go a long way toward managing your company's IT to improve the end-user experience, while allowing your IT teams to manage these systems more effectively and efficiently.