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Jira Service Desk - My Top Five Features

Jira Service Desk is my favourite Atlassian product. There, I said it. I use it all the time and love its customisation abilities and ease of use. I've used other ITSM tools before, but Jira Service Desk is by far my favourite. 

We've been using Jira Service Desk (server) since September 2016, and i've adapted different Jira Service Desk projects to work for us internally as a team and as a service provider for our customers. From a general Service Desk to help with queries, to a portal where our Customers can raise Change Requests with us (and vice versa).

I thought I’d jot down my top five features of Jira Service Desk...so here goes:

1. Easily configurable SLAs

Jira Service Desk enables you to configure your own SLAs. Using JQL to define your SLA means you can be as specific (or not) as you like. If your Jira Service Desk instance is live and you need to update your SLAs, SLAs of open issues are recalculated in real time. 

Using the associated SLA calendars, you can set your teams working hours to align with your SLAs too - so the clocks stop ticking when your team leaves the office. 

2. Integrated Knowledge Base

Using Confluence, you can integrate a Knowledge Base with your Jira Service Desk. This helps your users self-serve for common requests or enables you to share information. 

I use our Internal Knowledge Base for both internal documentation relating to the specific service (locked down to only team members), and for self-help how-to's and troubleshooting documents for end users. 

One recommendation for having a Knowledge Base is to promote it. If people don't know it's there, or how to use it - those requests for support and queries will continue to land in your queue.

3. Internal Comments

Internal comments remain within the Jira Service Desk Agent view, so you can request help from your team, link to email threads or specific documentation, or provide an audit trail for a later date - all without the end user ever knowing.

I use internal comments to request updates from my team about where they're at with the request if they've not updated it or to request support or advice from our consultancy team.

4. ITIL certified workflows

ITSM workflows for Request, Incident, Problem and Change are ITIL certified out of the box. 

I recently implemented a Jira Service Desk project for our internal Problem and Risk management. Originally, we had two separate Jira projects, but I wanted to utilise the ITIL certified Problem workflow (which is great!), and I created a simple workflow for managing Risks. I really like the Portal view for raising new Problem and Risk records, as it's simple to use and gathers all the relevant information in one easily configurable form. The Jira Service Desk reporting capabilities helps me to keep on top of ageing Problems and Risks too. 

5. Reporting

When you create a new Jira Service Desk project, it comes with a small number of reports out of the box. However, the reporting capabilities let you drill down into the data to see how your team are performing.

One of the custom reports I like to use is Average Incident Resolution Time by Application. This gives me a quick overview of Incident resolution times by application over a defined period. Jira Service Desk allows you to view data over the past 48 hours, 7 days, 14 days, 30 days, quarter by day, quarter by week, year by week, year by month. This report and available timings allows me to view Incidents over a range of dates to help identify training needs, potential application issues, and trends – for example: When a Jira Incident takes X amount of time consistently to be resolved, is it the same Agent or an underlying issue with the application? When looking at the report on a quarter by week time range, Confluence Incidents spike every third Thursday – why?

I've just touched the surface with my top five features of Jira Service Desk here. What’s your favourite feature? Do you have a favourite report you use? 

2 comments

I would also add that Jira Service Desk allows you to integrate with third-party applications. And also created a lot of plug-ins in Marketplace for any needs.

Agreed! What's your favourite JSD plugin @Gavin Barnes ?

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