How to's, Tips & Tricks
May 1, 2019

Top 6 JIRA Service Desk Features That Enhance the Employee and Agent Service Experience

Initially, as a team just starting to put support processes in place, sorting and managing service requests was quick and easy. A short message was all the Support team needed to process a change request or set up the company Google calendar for an employee. But as the company grows and more people come on board, you soon find yourself working through piles of tickets, sifting through company inboxes, and pinging your Support team so they can follow up on those 3-day-old issues.

Implementing an IT service desk brings order to the chaos by collecting and organizing these incoming service requests in one place. Tickets get resolved quicker, creating a more positive support experience for your users.     

JIRA Service Desk is one of the leading contenders in the market, and may already be on your list of IT service desk software to demo with your teams. Built by Atlassian, it takes the guesswork out of setting up a fully-featured, ITIL-certified service desk, enabling your Support team to focus on delivering top-notch service to your employees.

Once you’ve got JIRA Service Desk set up, your Support team can:

  • Create service desk projects for different areas and products
  • Process and work on submitted requests
  • Meet SLA goals and automate common administrative tasks
  • Collaborate with your Development team to resolve issues
  • Create and update relevant knowledge base content to deflect common issues

But with any shiny new tool comes a need for time and effort to understand each feature and how the pieces fit together. Navigating JIRA Service Desk can be especially overwhelming when you’re new to Atlassian’s suite of products, so we’ve rounded up 6 of the platform’s best features that empower your Support team to work productively while keeping your employees happy:

Feature #1: Employee Portal

Creating a service desk project is the first step to getting started with JIRA Service Desk, and each project comes with an employee portal to serve as your employee-facing help center and a contact form.

The employee portal clearly displays the different types of service requests that users can submit, which are then routed to the appropriate service desk project. As a project administrator, you can create request types based on the support you provide, customize the help center’s look-and-feel, configure the announcements settings, and set agent and employee permissions.

Tip: You can enhance the employee experience with an embeddable service desk widget, which you can set up on any of your websites. Clicking on the widget pulls up your employee portal where you can issue requests without leaving the website.   

Feature #2: Knowledge base via the Confluence integration

You can deflect common questions and resolve issues quicker by integrating JIRA Service Desk with Confluence and sharing relevant knowledge base content with your users.

Whether you’re delivering IT support within your organization or product support for your employees, linking your Confluence space lets your users find answers and solve issues on their own—a huge boost to the overall support experience. Agents will also be able to share an existing article when responding to issues or create a fresh knowledge base article for common questions.

Tip: Our friends at Obie developed a really cool plug-in that enables the ability for you to search through your Confluence easier and find documents quickly.

Feature #3: SLA Goals and Metrics

Keeping employees waiting too long leads to poor support experiences. JIRA lets you create service-level agreements (SLAs) to help your Support team stay on track with their assigned issues, making sure they meet their goals by responding to and resolving issues on time.

You can create SLA goals for a specific type of issue (e.g. “Blocker” or “Outage”) or for a specific group of users, such as executive employees. You can then set the time metric for when an agent should work on an issue all the way till resolution. Finally, you can tweak the default SLA clocks to fit your team’s work hours, provide 24/7 support for a specific group of employees, and more.

Feature #4: Automations

Gone are the days when you had to manually tag issues or email team members for assignments and approvals. Automation rules let you perform specific actions on incoming issues based on defined triggers and conditions. Using JIRA’s JQL syntax, you can automatically triage and assign issues, send notifications when an issue is about to breach its SLA, or close resolved issues after 10 days. You can create up to 30 automation rules within a service desk project.

By letting JIRA Service Desk take these administrative tasks off your shoulders, you and your Support team can save time and focus on getting work done.

Tip: Look to enable automation in every tool you use. Halp's tool automates ticket rules that can be triggered based on the Slack channel it was created from or the value of a custom field or the name of the form when the ticket was submitted.

Feature #5: Create linked issues

When processing bug reports, feature requests, and similar issues with JIRA Service Desk, you may want to link these to other relevant work—such as existing Confluence articles or issues that the engineering team is working on. You can accomplish this by creating a linked issue, which adds context to the issue and enables your Support and Development teams to collaborate with one another.

If your Development team already uses JIRA Software, you can integrate your service desk with relevant JIRA projects. Without the hassle of switching tools, your teams can work on issues quickly and seamlessly within the same, familiar platform.

Tip: After linking several service desk issues to an existing JIRA ticket, you can create an automation rule to close linked issues and update requesters once the Development team marks the ticket as “Resolved.” This saves your Support team time and effort from manually responding to each linked issue.

Feature #6: App integrations for your JIRA Service Desk

If you use third-party apps for sales, marketing, and internal communication, you can extend the functionality of JIRA Service Desk by integrating your service desk project with the tools you use every day. You’ll find apps to convert emails into issues, track time and progress on issues, and integrate your service desk with Slack to convert messages into tickets and process issues in one place.

Tip: If your team spends a lot of time in Slack learn about Halp’s 2-way sync between Jira messages and Slack conversations.

Choosing the right IT service desk is often a two-way street. You want employees to know exactly where to ask for help, while giving your Support team the tools to process and resolve issues in a timely manner. And you want to invest your resources and time in setting up a product from a trusted company that’s been a player in the tech world for several years, learning and improving its products all along. These six JIRA Service Desk features are just a scratch on the surface, with so much more under the hood to help your service teams stay productive while delivering top-notch support across the board.

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