When we created Teamwork Desk in 2015, our goal was to create a help desk ticketing solution that would help us to put our customers first. Our founders, Dan Mackey and Peter Coppinger, wanted to build a platform that could perfectly meet the needs of their own team — and then share the results with other teams around the world.
We talked to Adrian Kerr, Head of Customer Support at Teamwork, who has been here since the early days of Teamwork, to learn more about how Teamwork Desk has led to huge improvements in company performance and communication.
In the beginning, back when we only made one product (our project management software), we didn’t use a ticketing system for customer support. All customer questions came in through email until the volume made that process untenable.
After making the switch and trying a leading help desk platform for a couple of years, co-founder and CEO Peter Coppinger decided that it was time for us to create our own. He planned to build a help desk that would complement the existing Teamwork project management software and help to expand the business even further.
For Adrian, this was the perfect opportunity to really implement one of Teamwork’s most important core values: fanatical customer support.
“We looked at what the competitors had to offer and realized that we could build a tool that would give our customers better service from every angle,” Adrian said.
" “It was a win-win: with a better help desk tool, we would be able to provide our own customers with better support — and create something that would help them to do the same for their customers and clients.” A few months later, Teamwork Desk was launched.
Today, Teamwork Desk is the help desk of choice for thousands of companies, many of which have helped to shape the software along the way with important feedback and suggestions. Its flexibility means that each company can mold it to their exact communication workflows using features such as Smart Inboxes, Triggers, and more.
Adrian told us how Teamwork Desk helps them get to inbox zero with more than 1,500 queries to manage every week.
Teamwork uses nine key inboxes dedicated to different product types, different customer-facing departments (Sales, Marketing, HR), and more. As soon as queries arrive, they are sorted within the inboxes either manually using tags or automatically using triggers, which help to keep each ticket moving through the system. Tickets from high-priority customers are handled first along with tickets that have been waiting the longest, so the Support team can ensure that customers don’t fall through the cracks.
" “The key things for us are accuracy and speed because our core value is putting our customer first,” Adrian said. “Smart Inboxes allow us to save time by cutting down on manual admin, so agents can jump straight into a ticket with context.” This allows the support team to use filters in order to work through the tickets in an efficient, logical way that gets customers the answers they need — fast.
Next, general questions are separated from complex inquiries. The support team has several agent specialists who are trained to take care of bugs or specific product questions, so all of the tickets get handed off to the right agent in short order. If tickets need extra time or attention, triggers help remind agents or developers that follow-up is needed so they can keep the customer in the loop as the team works on a resolution.
With so many agents working through inboxes full of tickets, it would be easy for agents to start working on the same ticket without knowing someone else was on the job. But thanks to collision detection, agents can see immediately who’s working on each ticket. This means that even during busy times with large volumes of queries, Adrian and the team can be confident that they’re getting through the inbox quickly and without overlap.
Onboarding and training new team members has been streamlined significantly since they started using the Training Wheels feature. Team leads can review all tickets or a certain percentage of them to make sure that agents understand customer questions and provide an accurate reply. At Teamwork, we’ve also found that Training Wheels is especially useful when the whole team needs to get up to speed on a new feature of a product.
Teamwork Desk’s seamless integration with Teamwork, our project management software, has helped the Support team to cut out a lot of wasted time, too. Tasks for specific agents or the development team can be assigned without having to leave the ticket.
“Agents are getting tickets resolved so much faster because they don’t have to jump between apps to get information or make tasks,” Adrian said. “They can do it all from right in the ticket, which means our agents can be more efficient and responsive.”
Five years have gone by, and the customer support team has grown exponentially. Now, we have 18 support agents managing over 1500 queries every week.
For us, the visibility over the full customer communication lifecycle that Teamwork Desk provided has fueled our growth and facilitated strong, long-term relationships with customers. Every ticket gives agents an opening to see the entire customer history. Having this depth of information results in friendlier exchanges, more constructive conversations, and a deeper understanding of the ways customers interact with Teamwork Desk.
“Teamwork Desk was the reason our support team was able to grow so successfully in such a short period of time,” said Adrian. “Our team is completely dedicated to exceeding customer expectations, and this level of visibility has helped our team and the entire company,” said Adrian.
“Everyone interacts so seamlessly that we’re able to focus on doing our jobs well, replying quickly and accurately, and delighting our customers. More than anything, it’s allowed us to keep putting our customers first — and as a support team, that’s what matters most.”