Zendesk Guide Review

For us, it does what we need, which is ticketing, reporting, automation, responders, use of .csv imports, data extracts, and API use for Help Center. But, we'd like custom reporting capabilities.

Valuable Features

The features I find most valuable are the relative ease of configuration and the add-ons.

Improvements to My Organization

We used to receive email notifications into Outlook. It is extremely easy to create a mail.

Room for Improvement

  • They should build in a ticket auto-assignment module, which would be amazing. This would set Zendesk apart without having to use third-party apps. Although these are fantastic and useable, they would allow for consulting opportunities for them and really tailor the ticket management solution for a prospective customer.
  • Partitioning rules and triggers need improvement.
  • It would be great to go beyond multi-brand and allow for a brand to be self-managed by its own administrator with visibility from global administrators.
  • Enhancements to Help Center. A broader selection of templates, though if you have in-house web skills, the CSS, JScript, and markup environment should be flexible enough for most needs.
  • We would like to see enhancements in how the knowledge management process is managed in Help Center. Perhaps some work flow behind article creation to approval, also easier methods to flag articles for review, deletion flagging that can be executed with work flow from UI rather than having to do through API.
  • Custom reporting capability like for Zendesk ticketing for Help Center.
  • I would like to see the service to update the Twitter feed used more frequently and be updated with more meaningful info, but that happens with every service tool I have ever known since I was born.

Use of Solution

We've used the enterprise edition for three years.

Deployment Issues

In general, no, there we some issues around report name change during the reporting platform migration which was a little frustrating, but in general updates are managed well and even when they do fail they recover well.

Customer Service and Technical Support

It's a solid 7/10 for specific contacts, and it would be higher including my account managers in two different regions and also tech contacts. I would rate them all 9/10.

Initial Setup

Setup was straightforward if you know where you’re looking. Therein lies the crux of the issue. Do you know where to look? Given that there are a lot of configuration points to correctly setup your ZD instance ,it may not be out of the box, but no tool is, and I feel the investment to get up to speed with ZD is definitely worth it.

Implementation Team

In-house, but if time is a consideration, get a vendor. If you cannot afford it, invest the time and users to ample guides and knowledge on their support site and get involved in their communities. Actively use Zendesk support, which is great particularly for new users.


The ROI is related to your requirements and what you are trying to achieve and how well they address those needs. For us, it does what we need, which is ticketing, reporting, automation, responders, use of .csv imports, data extracts, API use for Help Center and other projects.

Pricing, Setup Cost and Licensing

Take the time to understand what your workload is before you even move into Zendesk. You will then be able to determine how many agents licenses you require.

Also, understand the requirements for what you need in terms of functionality as Zendesk Enterprise is significantly more costly than Plus but offers much more. You need to work out if you actually need that functionality and what price point is acceptable for the number of agents you have.

Remember, if you are looking at big numbers of agents talk with an account manager and see what price you can get. You will never know unless you give it a go.

Other Solutions Considered

  • MS CRM
  • SalesForce
  • Siebel
  • Infra
  • Front Range HEAT
  • AR Remedy

We chose Zendesk because of its ease of use and the projected ROI. Do you really need to invest in the beast and have a TCO that needs to cover an architectural team worth over $500,000 a year? In some cases absolutely, and the ROI justifies it in my case for this and my last organization. There are a lot of things where we can work with what we have.

Other Advice

Go and see people who use it, or at least gather feedback from the community. Join the Zendesk support community and ask.

Zendesk Ticket Interface


**Disclosure: I am a real user, and this review is based on my own experience and opinions.
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