How to choose the best IT ticketing software for an MSP company

By Staff Contributor on February 10, 2021

EDITED: 11/3/2022

Getting to the root cause of IT issues and resolving them quickly is a crucial part of keeping customers satisfied with their services. IT service providers responsible for monitoring their customers’ complex IT environments and systems face the challenge of determining how best to manage, organize, and complete each support request. With multiple customers and potentially hundreds of requests being submitted, quality of service is easily compromised if the right tools aren’t being used.

To help ensure you’re able to provide optimal support, consider adopting a ticketing software solution specifically tailored to the needs of a service provider. It can help your company increase technician productivity and reduce the likelihood of errors or delays. Here’s what can help you make an informed choice.

The importance of ticket management systems

There are numerous benefits associated with using ticketing software, all of which can impact the long-term success and growth of your company. Here are some of the key reasons why help desk management software is an important investment for your business:

  • Improves client communications by providing a way for customers to contact you directly
  • Helps to monitor technician performance and establish quality control
  • Helps you stay competitive in an increasingly tech-oriented environment in which customers expect fast, digital-first services
  • Keeps documentation and records of previous communications with each client, both for the purposes of audits and future interactions
  • Delivers automated updates to save technician time and keep clients informed
  • Contributes to your company’s brand image as a professional, organized, and reliable partner

Questions to ask when choosing ticketing software

In order to choose ticket management software that suits their needs and can help deliver services to customers, MSPs (managed service providers) and other IT companies can approach the market looking for dedicated solutions. To get a better sense of what ticket management software capabilities are necessary in your business, you can start by asking:

  1. What is important to you as a business, and what benefits are you hoping to gain by implementing IT ticketing system?

    Are you looking for a platform that can make billing easier? Or perhaps you want to improve technician productivity? If you’re considering investing in IT ticketing software, establishing what you hope to gain can help you make the right choice.
  2. How big is your business, and are you anticipating major growth?

    The current size of your business should determine the scope of your needs—but you should also think ahead. To make the most of service desk solutions, you should choose software that can support your current workload and scale as necessary to accommodate growth.
  3. Is cutting costs a priority for your business?

    The right ticket management software can help you save money by minimizing the costs associated with technician labor. If chosen correctly, help desk management tools can help reduce non-billable work by creating tickets automatically. The right IT ticket system can also give you access to extensive data insights, helping you analyze trends and make targeted cost-saving decisions.

Finding the right ticket management software

To help you sort through some of the many options on the market, we’ve put together a list of some of the best IT ticket management tools available in 2021 for you to pick from. In selecting these tools, we’ve considered features like user-friendliness, suitability for business use, and the range of offered capabilities.

SolarWinds Service Desk

© 2020 SolarWinds ITSM Israel Ltd. All rights reserved.

SolarWinds® Service Desk is a robust, modern, easy-to-use cloud-based IT service management (ITSM) solution built by ITSM professionals. It serves as a single point of contact for service requests, technical user issues, and centralized IT problem management. As a multitenant software as a service (SaaS) platform, Service Desk automates service request management, helps discover recurring problems for speedy incident resolution, and streamlines service delivery. Thus, it helps reduce the support workload on technicians, saves time and resources, and enables smooth, efficient, and quick employee support services.

Service Desk offers a built-in incident management tool based on the ITIL framework designed to automate the incident management process, route tickets to the right teams, identify priority issues, and align the necessary resources to close tickets faster. The solution’s unified and intuitive employee service portal with 24/7 service access allows employees to easily submit and monitor tickets and view the service-level agreements (SLAs) for their requests.

The software has a dedicated “knowledge base” providing complete resources and FAQs to make employees aware of minor issues they can resolve themselves without technical support. It also offers an IT service catalog to standardize employee support requests and fulfillment processes. The service catalog provides a single place for different business departments to connect employees to the services they need, helping your entire company monitor service delivery expectations.

Furthermore, SolarWinds Service Desk gives deeper visibility into day-to-day incidents through its real-time interactive dashboards and intuitive visual interface with custom displays. Its unified IT asset management dashboard lets you watch your technology assets, their functionalities, overall performance, and role. You can further manage your assets and software license updates through the tool’s API technology. Service Desk also helps you automate risk management, update your asset inventory, and create a centralized view of asset configurations to avoid potential downtime. You can easily discover IT hardware across different locations in your organization and automate the complete IT asset life cycle with its hardware inventory management tool.

Moreover, the Service Desk configuration management database (CMDB) visualization tool simplifies the change management process, helping review risks and gauge their overall negative impact. You can use this information to implement the necessary changes quickly and roll out new plans. You can also access historical data to compare recent and past changes.

Jira Service Desk

Copyright © 2022 Atlassian. All rights reserved

Jira Service Desk is a premium IT ticketing software solution that can help you manage incidents, announce changes to your interface or offerings in a proactive way, and identify the root cause of issues. This tool uses automation, queuing, and built-in asset management to streamline the process, empowering you to deliver efficient and quick support to your clients.

Jira Service Desk also includes a knowledge base and support for a range of integrations. The software makes it possible for you to quickly create a simple, intuitive portal that allows you to showcase services and enable your customers to access support quickly. Jira Service Desk also allows you to jump into customer satisfaction reports to get a better sense of what your customers need, and a built-in tool helps you gather feedback to continue improving service.

All in all, these capabilities can help your technicians become more efficient and serve customers with ease. The only potential disadvantage of Jira Service Desk is that it isn’t designed specifically for MSPs, which means it could be more cost-effective and better suited to the specific needs of IT service providers. To test it out for yourself, you can try Jira Service Desk for free here.


© Copyright 2006 – 2022 Spiceworks Inc. All rights reserved

Spiceworks is a help desk system designed to help businesses manage both customer-facing and internal tasks. With a one-time download, Spiceworks is easy to implement and allows users to log in from either their mobile device or desktop. This makes managing incoming tickets and service requests significantly easier, especially during off-hours.

One of Spiceworks’ most notable features is its inventory management integration, which helps your team oversee in-progress product orders. This tool also features an IP scanner, which locates orders for you and keeps you notified of progress. It goes without saying that free help desk software can be appealing to companies looking for a way to start serving customers without any upfront costs.

However, it’s worth noting that although the free Spiceworks features are enticing, it’s often worth it to invest a little in more powerful service desk features. Free options tend to have more limited features than paid alternatives, and they won’t have the same support options available to address your needs if you have questions or if things go wrong. In the long run, this may cause you delays in service and decreased customer satisfaction that may cost you more than investing in cost-effective software.


© Copyright 2005 – 2022. All Rights Reserved

Hesk is another free solution that is lightweight and very well-suited to small customer support teams. This user-friendly and simple tool is a good choice for beginner MSPs, because it has a minimal learning curve. As a cloud-based help desk, HESK is reliable and can be set up in just a few minutes.

This help desk offers a range of useful features, including the ability to create custom fields and modify the display so that it is aligned with your team’s workflow. This tool also provides a submission form, allowing customers to open web-based tickets managed within the application.

Much like Spiceworks, it’s important to note that HESK is a free tool. Because it does not come with upfront costs, HESK offers limited support and is not especially scalable. While its free capabilities may meet the needs of small companies, it may not be able to accommodate the needs of larger businesses. Even if your enterprise is just getting started out now, it’s likely you will outgrow HESK’s capabilities as you scale, which will require you to switch tools and onboard your employees and customers at a later date. This may cause you more hassle than it’s worth once your team is already familiar with one tool, which is why we suggest starting out with a tool that is equipped to meet your needs as you grow.

Getting Started

Before choosing an IT help desk management tool, we recommend taking the time to consider what you’re hoping to gain. No matter what your objectives are, one of the tools featured in this list can help you achieve them.

Learn More About IT Ticketing Software:

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