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An HR help desk that works from your inbox

Choosing the Right HR Help Desk Software: A 2024 Guide

Apr 30, 2024
12 min read

Table of contents

“It’s just Monday, and my inbox is filled with leave requests, job applications, employee benefit queries, and more! How do I manage everything?”

If you’re working in HR, this would be relatable. 

Answering queries from employees and candidates requires keeping track of all these requests, working closely with your team, and sometimes talking to other departments, to get the right answers. 

Doing all of this manually can be daunting. That’s why you need a HR helpdesk software. Whether it’s streamlining incoming requests or informing employees about a new protocol, an HR helpdesk can bring order to the everyday chaos. 

Additionally, by providing timely and accurate responses to inquiries, a helpdesk enhances the overall employee experience. It ensures that employees feel supported and valued, leading to higher satisfaction and productivity across the organization.

But, how do you know WHICH is the right HR helpdesk for your business needs? Let’s find out!

Table of Contents

Key Takeaways

  • Strategic Selection Process: Choosing the right HR help desk software involves carefully analyzing your organization’s specific HR challenges and technical requirements. It’s not a one-size-fits-all decision but a strategic selection that should align with your organizational goals and HR processes.
  • Comprehensive Feature Set: Essential features such as cloud-based operation, scalability, customization, integration capabilities, advanced analytics, and a user-friendly interface play a crucial role in choosing a HR help desk software. 
  • Budget Considerations: Evaluate the total cost of the software, including all potential expenses beyond the initial purchase price.. 
  • The Value of Real-World Insights: Look up user reviews and try out free trials to understand how the software fits into your current HR team’s workflow. This research phase is critical for making an informed decision.

What is an HR Help Desk?

An HR help desk is a centralized platform to assist employees and candidates with various human resources-related inquiries and issues. It is the primary point of contact for employees and also prospective employees seeking assistance with HR processes, policies, benefits, in-house or contractor payroll, and other employment-related questions.  An HR helpdesk streamlines communication between the HR department and other teams, ensuring that queries are logged, tracked, and resolved efficiently. 

For instance, let’s say an HR team of a growing company has to deal with a flood of candidate applications. Implementing an HR helpdesk software can easily tackle this challenge. 

With the help of the software, the HR team can categorize incoming requests based on the role, department, or stage of the recruitment process. This categorization ensures that each application is promptly directed to the appropriate teammate for review and processing. 

Email tags in an HR help desk
Email tags to categorize communication

As a result, the HR team can efficiently manage the influx of applications, maintain clear communication with candidates, and expedite the hiring process. This streamlined approach not only enhances the productivity of the HR team but also leaves a positive impression on candidates, showcasing the company’s commitment to organized and efficient recruitment practices.

Turn your inbox into an HR help desk See how Hiver works

Benefits of Using a HR Help Desk

An HR help desk serves as the backbone of internal operations, providing crucial support and guidance to employees on various HR-related matters.

Here’s why an HR helpdesk can be important for your business:

1. Improves Efficiency

Automating routine tasks with a help desk can significantly speed up internal operations in the Human Resources department. Deloitte’s research indicates that automation can enhance HR task efficiency by up to 40%

For example, a technology firm can manage to reduce the response time for HR-related queries, let’s say from 48 hours to just 4 hours, by implementing an HR help desk. The help desk can automate repetitive tasks like leave request approvals, performance review reminders, sending quarterly employee feedback surveys and so on. 

These can significantly reduce manual workload for HR staff. This demonstrates the software’s impact on operational speed.

2. Enhances Employee Experience

Quick and accessible HR support directly increases employee satisfaction. According to Gallup, companies with highly satisfied employees see a 21% increase in productivity. 

For example, an e-commerce company can introduce a self-service portal for answering HR inquiries. Their employees can directly go to the portal, search for the relevant questions and find solutions. This way, they get quick assistance and are satisfied with the support with receive.

5 benefits of an HR help desk
5 benefits of implementing an HR help desk

3. Helps in Compliance Management

HR help desk software plays a crucial role in reducing legal risks by ensuring that HR policies are kept up-to-date and compliant. The Society for Human Resource Management (SHRM) notes that organizations’ non-compliance costs can exceed $14 million. 

Thus, it is important to invest in a system that helps you to adhere to compliance. For example, a multinational company can quickly adjust to new labor laws across several regions within weeks and avoid fines by setting up compliance alerts from their HR help desk software.

4. Centralizes Information

A centralized system for all HR-related requests, data, and protocols simplifies access and management. 

It also helps companies eliminate duplicate requests. In fact, IBM’s study shows that such systems can reduce HR inquiries by up to 50%. 

5. Aids in Making Data-Driven Decisions

Most HR help desks are equipped with analytics and reporting features. This enables organizations to make informed HR strategies. 

McKinsey & Company highlights that data-driven organizations are more likely to succeed. For example, let’s say a business analyzed its HR help desk data and found that employees had many questions about remote work policies. Working on this insight, the company can update its WFH guidelines for clarity, which eventually results in a significant drop in queries related to remote work.

Recommended read:Top 10 Help Desk Software for Startups in 2024

Top 6 HR Help Desks To Try Out in 2024

We’ve seen how having the right HR help desk software can be a very valuable asset to your organization. 

Now, let’s look at the top 6 HR help desks for 2024. These include both on-premise and cloud-based solution providers. We’ve compared their features, pricing, and other important aspects to give you a complete picture of what to expect with each tool.

Help DeskStarting PriceG2 RatingFree Trial
Hiver15/user/month4.6 ⭐7 days
Zendesk49/user/month4.4 ⭐14 days
Freshservice19/user/month4.6 ⭐21 days
Zoho Desk$7/month per user4.5 ⭐15 days
DeskPro$39/user/month4.3 ⭐14 days
Intercom$39/user/month4.5 ⭐14 days
Comparison Table of 6 Best HR Help Desks

1. Hiver

Hiver is a powerful help desk that helps HR teams manage queries and tasks. It integrates directly into your inbox – this means that your HR team doesn’t have to learn additional software to get started. They can handle employee requests, candidate applications, and also collaborate with other teams from one centralized location. Sounds easy, right?!

Hiver-Top HR help desk
Hiver Help Desk Solution

 Features You’ll Love:

  • Shared Inbox: Access and manage team inboxes ([email protected] or [email protected]) easily. Track all incoming queries – related to onboarding, leaves, or benefits, for instance – and ensure nothing gets overlooked.. 
  • Automations to Streamline Repetitive Tasks: Automate routine tasks such as sorting or assigning queries. Hiver’s workflows allow you to do this by setting specific conditions. For instance, you can assign or tag emails based on specific keywords or sender email. This help in reducing mundane manual tasks.
  • Notes and @mentions: Enhance team collaboration using in-email notes and @mentions. This makes it easy to discuss specific employee queries right next to the relevant email thread.
  • Templates: Create canned responses and store them for later use. Hiver’s Instead of typing the same response over and over, you just pick a template, customize,if needed, and send it off.

Starts at:

  • Lite plan: $15/user/month
  • Pro plan: $49/user/month
  • Elite plan: $79/user/month

2. Zendesk

Zendesk’s powerful customer support and service desk can be used as an HR help desk to manage employee requests efficiently. It’s robust features help automate and streamline HR processes, track incoming queries, collaborate faster, and get insights into response and resolution time.

Zendesk as a HR help desk
Zendesk UI

Features You’ll Love:

  • AI-Powered Knowledge Base: Your team can create a knowledge base using Zendesk, which automatically updates itself through AI capabilities.. This empowers employees to find answers to common questions on policies, benefits, and leaves, on their own.
  • Advanced Analytics and Reporting Tools: You can spot trends, see the type of queries, and make things better. Basically, it helps you figure out what employees need and how to give it to them.
  • Robust Automations: You can automatically route queries to the right person with its skil-based routing feature. You can also send out stuff like policy updates, benefits enrollment reminders wtc. without having to do it manually. 

Starts at:

  • Suite team: $55/user/month
  • Suite Growth: $89/user/month
  • Suite Professional: $115/user/month

Recommended read:Top 10 Zendesk Alternatives for 2024

3. Freshservice

Freshservice is a help desk that caters to the needs of both IT support and HR teams. You can use it for small businesses , medium and large enterprises. It combines user-friendly design with powerful features.With Freshservice, teams can automate routine tasks and get insights into volume of queries, type of queries, and more.

Freshservice as an HR help desk
Freshservice Interface

Features You’ll Love:

  • User-Friendly Service Portal: You can create a service portal that’s not only easy to use but also fully customizable. This enables employees to quickly find information, submit requests, and track their status without direct HR intervention. This autonomy reduces the workload on HR teams and empowers employees with immediate access to the resources they need.
  • Automations for Incident and Request Management: The platform makes managing HR requests easier by sorting and sending them to the right teammate automatically. This means employees get help faster.
  • Powerful Analytics for Insight into HR Operations: Provides in-depth analytics and reporting tools that offer valuable insights into HR activities and employee trends. You can leverage this data to make informed decisions, identify areas for improvement, and measure the impact of HR initiatives.

Starts at:

  • Starter plan: $19/user/month
  • Growth plan: $49/user/month
  • Pro plan: $95/user/month
  • Enterprise plan: $119/user/month

4. Zoho Desk

Zoho Desk helps HR teams handle queries/requests better by bringing everything together in centralized one place. It makes support smoother with automated workflows and useful insights. This means your team can be more organized and helpful to employees!

Zoho desk as an HR help desk
Zoho desk’s centralized view of requests

Features You’ll Love:

  • Centralized Ticketing System: The system puts all queries/requests in one place, so HR teams can keep track and answer them quickly. Employees can ask questions through their preferred channel email, web forms, or social media, – all of which comes to the central place. 
  • Automation of HR Workflows: You can set automations for routine tasks such as employee onboarding procedures, leave requests, and policy updates. This, reduces manual workloads for your team.
  • Self-Service Knowledge Base: You can create a knowledge base with FAQs, policy documents, and self-help guides. This empowers employees to find answers to common questions independently,
  • Advanced Analytics and Reporting: You can gain valuable insights into employee concerns, request patterns, and team performance. This data help in decision making and identifying opportunities for improving HR services.

Starts at:

  • Express plan: $7/user/month
  • Standard plan: $14/user/month
  • Professional plan: $23/user/month
  • Enterprise plan: $40/user/month

Recommended read: Zendesk vs Zoho Desk: Which one is better in 2024?

5. DeskPro

DeskPro is a help desk software to manage employee queries and streamline HR processes. With features like omnichannel support and powerful automations, It helps your team provide quick and accurate support to the employees.

DeskPro as an HR help desk
DeskPro’s UI

Features You’ll Love:

  • Omnichannel Support: You can receive and manage employee inquiries and requests across multiple channels, including email, chat, phone, and social media, all within a single interface. This omnichannel approach ensures that employees can easily reach out for support in the way that is most convenient for them.
  • Efficient Ticket Management: Queries get automatically converted into tickets that can be categorized, prioritized, and assigned to the appropriate teammate. This ticket management system helps streamline the resolution process, ensuring timely and organized responses.
  • Customizable Self-Service Portal: It has a  fully customizable self-service portal, where your team can publish helpful resources such as FAQs, policy documents, and onboarding guides. 

Starts at:

  • Team plan: $29/user/month
  • Professional plan: $59/user/month
  • Enterprise plan: $99/user/month

6. Intercom

Intercom is a help desk system that makes communication with employees easy and personal. It facilitates real-time communication with employees, enabling instant support and engagement.

Intercom as an HR help desk
Intercom UI

Features You’ll Love:

  • Automated Bots: Bots help you handle common querues and tasks, like answering FAQs or collecting details for complex requests. Chatbots also help employees find answers themselves, saving time for your team.
  • Customizable Messaging Campaigns: You can created tailored canned messages for different employee groups. Your team can use this to send automated welcome messages, reminders for benefits enrollment, or company updates to everyone. This ensures everyone gets the info they need, when they need it.
  • Integration Capabilities: The platform integrates seamlessly with other HR software and productivity apps,that streamlines data management and workflows. Whether it’s connecting with HRIS systems or other collaboration tools, it enhances the overall functionality and efficiency of HR services.

Starts at:

  • Essential plan: $39/user/month
  • Advanced plan: $99/user/month
  • Expert plan: $139/user/month

Features To Look For In An HR Help Desk in 2024

The demand for robust HR help desk software has never been higher. Here are the critical features to look for in an HR helpdesk software in 2024:

1. User-Friendly Interface

 A user-friendly interface in an HR help desk software is crucial for ensuring that users (HR staff, in this case) can easily navigate the system without feeling overwhelmed. 

For example, let’s say a company wants to invest in an HR help desk software. They can choose a system that seamlessly integrates into their existing email platform. This way, employees can easily send in queries without leaving their inbox. 

More importantly, the HR staff can address these queries from their inbox without toggling between multiple tools. This ease of use leads to quicker adoption of the software.

Hiver - an HR help desk that integrates with your inbox
HR Help Desk that integrates into your Inbox

Hiver, for instance, is a HR help desk software that integrates seamlessly with your email inbox, making it simple for both HR professionals and employees to use. 

The intuitive design ensures that HR staff can manage requests efficiently, while employees easily navigate options, submit inquiries, and access HR information without needing extensive training. 

2. Advanced Analytics and Reporting Features

Advanced analytics and reporting features in an HR help desk help businesses track important metrics and improve internal operations. It provides insights into ticket trends, service efficiency, and employee experience, all of which enable data-driven decision-making.

In fact, Deloitte’s “Global Human Capital Trends” report highlights that organizations using advanced analytics witness a 30% increase in decision-making speed. 

Advanced reporting features of Hiver
Advanced Reporting Features

For example, using Hiver’s reporting capabilities, an HR team can identify a pattern of queries related to performance review processes. By analyzing this trend, they can streamline the review guidelines and circulate review protocols, which can help in reduction of such inquiries.

3. Powerful Automation

Automation in an HR help desk streamlines and expedites routine tasks such as ticket routing, workload distribution, request processing, and so on. 

In fact, McKinsey’s research suggests that approximately 60% of all occupations could automate 30% or more of their constituent activities, emphasizing the significant potential for automation in business environments. 

Hiver's rule based automation
Rule-Based Automation for Repetitive Tasks

Hiver takes automation to the next level by enabling rule-based automation and round-robin assignments, among other features. 

For instance, inquiries can be automatically assigned to team members based on specific rules. For example, all queries containing keywords like “salary” or “reimbursement” can be automatically routed to the finance department. 

Recommended read:Everything You Need to Know About Automations

4. Collaboration Features

Collaboration features in an HR help desk are designed to enhance teamwork among HR staff and facilitate interactions with other departments. Features like shared inboxes, task assignments, and internal notes, help HR staff to collaborate better amongst themselves and also with other departments. 

Hiver's collaboration feature - Notes and @mention
Hiver’s Notes and @mention

Hiver provides such robust collaborative features. It has a shared inbox that centralizes and offers complete visibility into all incoming queries. HR managers can directly assign requests to team members from the shared inbox. 

Furthermore, Hiver also offers features like Notes and @mention. For instance, when an HR team member is addressing an email query about company policy, they can use Notes and @mention to consult a colleague directly beside the email. They simply have to @mention the concerned colleague and add a note beside the email thread. This saves them from the hassle of cc-ing and forwarding emails. 

5. Integrations with Other Systems

The ability of an HR help desk software to integrate seamlessly with other systems, such as payroll and performance management tools  is crucial for ensuring smooth and error-free flow of data across an organization. This integration is key to automating and optimizing HR processes, making them more efficient and less prone to manual errors.

The Society for Human Resource Management (SHRM) emphasizes that integrated HR systems can boost data accuracy by 40%. This is vital for ensuring that employee information is consistently up-to-date and correctly reflected across all organizational systems.

The Bottom Line

When employees know that they’re being heard and are supported, it improves their morale and engagement at work. 

This is where a HR helpdesk can add value to your company.

If you’re looking to invest in one, we’d urge you to firstly take a free trial of the above mentioned tools. Try it out and see if it fits into your current workflows, and how your team is getting used to it.

Ultimately, the software you pick should be comfortable for your team to use, and it should help them get better at what they do – supporting employees.

Want to check out Hiver? Try it for free


  1. What is HR help desk?
    HR help desk software is a digital platform designed to manage employee inquiries, automate HR processes, and centralize all HR tasks. It basically helps HR teams efficiently track, prioritize, and resolve employee requests.
  1. Why is a HR help desk important?
    It streamlines HR operations, improves response times to employee inquiries, enhances data security, and ultimately boosts employee satisfaction by providing timely and accurate support.
  1. How do I identify my organization’s HR challenges?
    Start by reviewing common HR inquiries and issues within your organization. Look for patterns of repetitive questions, bottlenecks in information flow, or any areas where efficiency can be improved.
  1. What is the benefit of a free trial in evaluating HR help desk software?
    A free trial allows you to test the software’s features, usability, and compatibility with your HR processes before making a financial commitment. It’s a practical way to assess if the software meets your needs.
A B2B marketer, Madhuporna is passionate about breaking down complex concepts into easy-to-digest nuggets with a stroke of her pen (read keyboard). Her expertise lies in crafting research-driven content around customer service, customer experience, IT and HR. When off the clock, you'll find her binge-watching suspense thrillers or basking in nature.

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