There are many things about the process of launching a startup that can seem daunting. From trying to secure funding to navigating the ever-precarious business landscape, unless you’ve run a company before, the first six to 12 months can sometimes feel like a succession of leaps of faith.

What’s more, it doesn’t matter how good your idea is - if you aren’t able to provide your customers with the experience they deserve, they won’t stick with you. While your team might be able to provide support in the beginning, long term it’s just not a viable option. Investing in a dedicated IT helpdesk solution will take the pressure off your team – which is probably already stretched – and streamline your business operations.

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However, choosing which vendor you want to partner with can be difficult. Unless you have first-hand experience using a piece of software it can be hard to decide which will best cater to the needs of your startup and reliably see you through the start of its life. New companies are often already running on a tight budget and schedule that any unnecessary software switching mid-way through its cycle can lead to spiralling costs and wasted time.

Here are four things you should consider when choosing IT helpdesk software for your startup.

Budget

Staying on-budget is often the most difficult, but most important, thing for a newly formed start up. Before funding for your idea is secured, it’s unlikely that you’ll have a lot of extra money to chuck around so ensuring you invest in IT helpdesk software that offers you value for money is a must.

A lot of software platforms either offer a free trial of their product or a free version for small teams, although you should expect to find a limited range of features available to you if you opt for that. Despite the long-term drawbacks of this, using a free version to start with will help you to stick to your budget and remove the stress that comes from spending a large amount on software that might not actually be best for your startup.

Support

Some questions to keep in mind when picking a support solution might include: does your chosen software offering provide multichannel customer support, including emails, calls, SMS, live chat and social media? Does it offer language support so it can help your users based abroad or who don’t speak English as their first language? Finally, does your chosen helpdesk provider offer 24/7 support, so users everywhere can have their problems dealt with in a timely fashion, not just during your business hours?

Finding a provider that can offer all of these things will not only be good for your business but will improve your customers’ experience and ensure they feel valued.

Integrations

The current trend for investing in multiple SaaS platforms means that some large organisations now have close to 200 software solutions running in their environment at any one time. As a result, if your software doesn’t integrate with your other business software platforms, you’re probably not going to stick with it the long term, instead adopting a solution that allows all the software you rely on to integrate seamlessly.

Furthermore, the greater number of tools that your helpdesk software integrates with, the better the service and support you’ll be able to offer your customers; eliminating the potential for error as customer information can be shared more easily across platforms that integrate with each other.

Scalability

When they launch, most startups find themselves operating on a skeleton crew. However, as an organisation grows over time, it needs to be able to take its software with it. This means it's vital from the outset to find a helpdesk solution that will work for your startup both at the beginning of your journey when you’re a team of three and in the future when you’re a global business. Just as you don’t want to be paying a lot of money up front for an overly complex system that you don’t need; you also want to avoid searching for a new solution 12 months down the line because you’ve outgrown your original choice.

Not only do you need to make sure your preferred IT helpdesk provider can roll out its offer to multiple users across a variety of locations, you should also check to see if it offers a sliding scale pricing model as well to help you keep to your budget at all stages of the operational process.

Furthermore, some platforms offer cheap, time-limited, user accounts which can allow your organisation to scale up or down, depending on its need, at very little additional cost to your bottom line.