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The very first step is knowing what you need. The next step is knowing what your budget is. Cost is an important element and many companies put off or decide not to buy help desk software because it can be costly. Even so, there are alternatives such as cloud based systems that, while not inexpensive, are affordable when scaled to business requirements.
One of the best ways to save money is to have a thorough knowledge of your requirements before researching what software is available. Look at what you already use such as the telephone, Email or chat features on your website, to determine where your weaknesses are and what empty spots need to be filled in.
Once you have a good idea of what you need and the size of your budget, the next step is to start evaluating software. Look for software that fits your business model as closely as possible. The way you do business will have a considerable effect on the type of software required. For example, those who sell online or in different countries will require different software than a business whose major sales are primarily offline or local.
Ideally, you want software that interfaces well with customers. This means it should be easily customizable to fit your business. The people who do the customizing also need to understand the psychology of their customers, especially when it comes to knowing the type of problems those customers face. How many of us have called a help desk only to be given an automated series of choices, none of which fit our circumstance.
It's important to remember what a help desk is for. It's not for cross selling or conducting surveys, at least not right up front. These things are possible, but only after the customer's problem has been resolved. Placing such items too early in the customer service cycle can make the whole process seem like nothing more than a hustle.
There is much more to building a help desk than simply buying some software. Ultimately, it's about relating to and communicating with customers on an individual basis. Whatever help desk you choose, remember that no helpdesk should treat customers like items to be processed. Successful customer service is built on respecting the customer as a real person.
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