Help desk vs service desk – what’s the difference?

Service Desk, Help Desk?

Help desk vs service? What is the correct concept name?

A help desk or service desk is a resource intended to provide the customer or end user with information and support related to a company’s or institution’s products and services.

Help desks introduced in the 60s

It was the invention of the phone that facilitated the first help desks. As a customer you could call a company and explain your problems, instead of meeting up in person. As a result large companies introduced call centers to organize customer inquiries in the 60s.


ITIL is born

In the 80s, many companies started organizing help desks focusing on IT and support. For mainframe systems. The British government was dissatisfied the quality of the IT support given to them. So the Office of Government Commerce (OGC) formed the ITIL concept as response to the lack of quality.

From help desks to service desks

In the 90s companies used help desk software to a greater extent. Focusing on accepting inquiries in a Single Point Of Contact (SPOC). And solving IT issues in the first, second and third line of support.
Companies demanded more features to make help desks more effective. Service desks emerged to be communication centers. Efficient handling of IT-related errors, orders, and information needs. And today, service delivery makes up a very large part of the work done in an organization. To both internal colleagues and external customers. This is often where you can make a difference to customers. And increased efficiency will gain strategic competitive advantage. 

Help desk vs service desk today

So what exactly is the difference between helpdesk and service desk? People use both concepts. And it matters less if you call it help desk or service desk. So explained in few words, help desk is a subset to a service desk.
The most important thing is to know what opportunities exist in a modern service desk. Self services unload significant workload. And companies then got time on the issues requiring manual handling.
CMDB (Configuration Management Database) presents a logical model of your organization’s objects. Organize the objects like equipment, services, and documentation. And get more control and overview of how they relate.
Link the objects to the cases you register. Produce valuable reports for proactive improvement of the service delivered.

Register today, and try out our Service Desk for 60 days! It's free and with absolutely no obligations!