An issue tracking software, also known as an issue tracking system, is a program that catalogs all issues. In computer science, an issue may pertain to a bug, missing documentation, task, or a requested feature.
An issue tracking software performs multiple functions. It is needed to enter requests and errors so that they can be assigned to appropriate employees. It can also help check the time spent, work quality, and handling of a certain issue.
Issue tracking helps analyze several tickets, as well as compile the data for the system’s FAQs. As it can help keep a history of the changes, issue tracking systems are vital for different departments within an organization.
With that being said, whether you have a small or big business, you will benefit a lot from a good issue tracking software. If you are still on the process of shopping for a certain program, then these reviews on issue tracking systems should help you out.
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Backlog by NuLab sees itself to be an easy and efficient issue tracking software. It has an impressive resume, granted that more than 9,000 companies use this program.
Backlog helps users keep an online track of bugs and issues. It has a Kanban-style board where updates and status changes can be seen easily. With its impressive search and filter capacity, you can look for unresolved issues with relative ease.
Tracking issues is an easy thing to do with Backlog by NuLab. After all, it has a cross-function issue that allows non-technical personnel to document bugs. It also features a collaborative system, so you and your team can help work on a variety of issues.
Backlog by NuLab offers a free service that comes with 100 MB storage. It is suited for 1 project with 10 members. The starter pack costs $35 per month. Ideal for 5 projects with up to 30 members, it comes with 1 GB of storage.
The most popular package is the Standard plan, which can be used by an unlimited number of team members. At $100 a month, it is suited for 100 projects with its 30GB of storage.
The 100 GB Premium package, in the meantime, costs $175 monthly. As a top-tier plan, it allows for an unlimited number of projects and team members.
Pros of Using Backlog by NuLab
Simple and easy to use
Newbies and seasoned professionals alike enjoy using Backlog because of its easy to use feature. With its neat design, users can tackle issues and administer projects effortlessly.
Ideal for collaborative international tasks
With its exemplary collaborative feature, Backlog is favored by companies that span different time zones. Its real-time collaborative software allows easy project organization, even if one team is in Manhattan and the other one is in Mumbai.
Gantt chart feature
Many customers are raving over Backlog’s Gantt chart feature. This easily navigable program allows users to separate projects and milestones seamlessly. This beneficial for many since Gantt charts make everything clear. Users know if they’re up to the task – or if they are falling behind.
Cons of Using Backlog by NuLab
No parent issue lists
According to most users, Backlog is not able to differentiate bugs according to parent issues. As such, it may show duplicates of certain issues, which could be confusing for most users.
Unable to change plans mid-trial
If your tasks or team members increase suddenly in the middle of a project, you may have to purchase another plan. After all, Backlog doesn’t allow users to shift to a new plan once the trial has been started.
Bitrix24 is an issue tracking software that works for both small companies and big businesses. With over 4 million clients under its belt, Bitrix24 provides remote teams an avenue to collaborate effortlessly.
Bitrix24’s issue tracking capacities cover assignment management, issue schedules, project and task management, as well as knowledge base management.
It also comes with a wide array of business phone systems, including call logging, recording, monitoring, and routing.
Bitrix24 is free of charge for a team of fewer than 12 users. But if you want an unlimited number of users to use the system, you need to pay $99 monthly. This is considered by many as a good deal. For one, this bundle comes with file sharing and e-mail marketing integration, to name a few.
Pros of Using Bitrix24
Easy to use system
What attracts many to Bitrix24 is its ease of use. The program is easy to use, which is great for new team members. You can also customize the platform, so you can navigate the dashboard according to your needs or requirements.
Quick client search
Don’t remember the name of your client? Worry not as Bitrix24 has Dynamic Search, where you only need to type certain account keywords. This wonderful engine does the searching for you – so you can find the client card and get started on his/her issue right away.
Free 30-day trial
Not a lot of issue tracking systems offer a free trial. Fortunately, you can take advantage of this Bitrix24 deal. For a month, you can tinker with the software for free. This can help you determine if it’s the program for your business.
Cons of Using Bitrix24
Poor support feature
If you live in a different time zone, you might find it hard to get in touch with Bitrix24. After all, support is offered during UTC 8 am to 5:30 pm, while tech support is only available at UTC+3 from 8 am to 5:30 pm. To make matters worse, the sales team is only available from 9 am to 6 pm at UTC+2.
‘Cluttered’ user interface
Many users find Bitrix24’s outdated for the time. It is also not as streamlined as other systems. There are so many functions, which can be overwhelming to new (even old) Bitrix24 users.
Clubhouse is an issue tracking system that fares well for remote software teams. It allows you to work with your team members, wherever they might be.
Created by developers for developers, this program was made to wean out the problems that most users encounter. For one, it can be integrated easily with other systems, such as Slack, Figma, and API.
Clubhouse boasts of a simple user interface that can be used by virtually anybody. Though it’s developed by engineers, it’s navigable enough for newbies and non-techy personnel.
Clubhouse is a program that can be used for free by up to 10 members. If you need access for more users, you can opt for the Standard plan, which costs $10 per user per month. The Enterprise package, on the other hand, has its price customized according to the company’s requirements.
Pros of Using Clubhouse
Fast loading time
Although it is free, the Clubhouse program loads remarkably fast. There’s little downtime, so you can solve issues and tickets right away.
You can change the Clubhouse interface whichever way you want. You can make more important aspects visible, and leave some ‘unnecessary’ details buried somewhere else in the program.
Should you choose to be billed annually, you can get a 15% discount. That would be $1.5 worth of savings per user, per month. Nonprofits are entitled to certain discounts as well. You can save even more money by signing up for a 14-day free trial.
Cons of Using Clubhouse
Problematic Android App
While Clubhouse offers an app for its mobile-plugged users, the android app seems to have some bugs. This can be problematic for many users who cannot get to a PC right away.
Lacks some features
Compared to other agile management programs, Clubhouse doesn’t have a Gantt chart or timeline view. It also lacks budget management and expense tracking, which may be an issue to businesses that rely on limited budgets.
As the name suggests, this program promises to vastly improve your customer service. Its focal feature is the easy-to-use system that allows you to manage tickets in a fast, efficient way.
It also comes with built-in tools that make ticket solving rather easy. With that being said, Helpdesk can help hasten your response time to certain issues.
HelpDesk takes pride in its good customer service features. For one, this program allows you to send personalized messages to your patrons. As such, it can help promote brand loyalty within your client base.
HelpDesk also comes with a 14-day free trial so you can see the program’s strengths for yourself. If you like what you get, you can start with the paid service that starts at $4 per employee, per month.
Pros of Using HelpDesk
Good collaboration feature
You don’t have to leave the app just to send messages to your workmates. You can communicate with your team, even if you are working on multiple issues on the Helpdesk platform.
Can be used in multiple devices
You can track issues and progress with whatever device you use. The HelpDesk app can be used in PCs, tablets, and smartphones. As such, you can solve bugs wherever you might be.
Want to know about what your patrons think about your services? Then you’ll love Helpdesk’s rate feature. As the name suggests, it helps you to learn more about what customers like or dislike about your services.
Cons of Using HelpDesk
Lacks more advanced features
Since HelpDesk is a relatively young app, it lacks more sophisticated features. There is no self-service portal and on-demand communications. With that being said, HelpDesk still has time to mature to be at par with its competitors.
Lags in customer service
Compared to other programs, HelpDesk does not have a virtual assistant or a live chat feature. It also lacks appointment or call center management features. HelpDesk cannot be integrated into social media channels, which is a boon since many companies make use of these platforms.
Powered by ManageEngine, ServiceDesk Plus is an issue tracking software that promises excellent customer service.
It features incident management, where you can manage tickets and help improve user productivity. It also comes with a project management feature, so users can create and integrate projects that help improve service delivery.
ServiceDesk Plus also comes with a problem management interface that can boost customer service. This feature helps analyze problems and prevent these incidences from ever happening again.
Like most systems, ServiceDesk Plus has a self-service portal where users can request and track their reports. It also has a Live Chat feature, so you can attend to your customer’s needs in real-time.
ServiceDesk Plus offers a free trial, after which you can choose from any of its 3 plans. Prices vary for the Standard, Professional, and Enterprise plans. Prices start at $120 per year, per member.
Pros of Using ServiceDesk Plus
You need not browse through your many team members to see who can take the next ticket. ServiceDesk Plus has an auto-assign feature that channels the ticket to the next available tech. It is designed with a round-robin technique that ensures assignments are made fairly.
Suitable for government organizations and hospitals
With its Quality Citizen response, ServiceDesk Plus is well-suited for public agencies and hospitals. It provides a cheap yet efficient help desk for entities that need to provide an immediate response. As such, it works best for hospitals, the military, and the police.
You can easily modify your ServiceDesk Plus with the help of Deluge, a low-code programming language. With the use of webhooks, Deluge can easily be integrated into various business systems.
Cons of Using ServiceDesk Plus
Since ServiceDesk Plus is located in India, users from other countries are sure to have time-related support issues. For some callers, the language barrier has become a problem as well.
Compared to other issue tracking software programs, ServiceDesk Plus is one of the more expensive ones. With the price, of course, comes many additional services, such as asset and project management for the Enterprise plan.
As the name suggests, this help desk is specially made for IT. It allows users to monitor issues easily. After all, tickets can be easily accepted, replied to, commented, and closed easily.
It also comes with Active Directory integration, so you can add and authenticate users. You can also tag them to the issues they need to resolve.
SpiceWorks has a Help Desk Team management feature where you can visualize performance easily. This allows you to monitor everybody, especially if some users are getting behind on their tasks.
SpiceWorks also has a user self-service feature, where clients can report issues and track the progress of the task for themselves. This can be customized easily, so they see what they want (and need) to see.
What makes SpiceWorks IT Help Desk a favorite amongst many is that it’s free of charge. All you just need is 8GB of RAM, 40GB of Disk Space, 4 vCPUs, and a hypervisor that supports OVA format.
Pros of Using SpiceWorks IT Help Desk
You don’t need to pay any amount to use the Spiceworks program. Although that is the case, the system allows an unlimited number of tickets and administrators.
E-mail response feature
Should you receive a ticket, it will be forwarded to both the platform and your e-mail address. That being said, you have the option to respond via the help desk or through e-mail. Since you are notified of every ticket, you don’t have to refresh the dashboard every so often.
Despite being free, SpiceWorks IT Help Desk provides phenomenal support for its users. And in the rare case that they can’t help you out, you can always check the community forum. Here, fellow users are more than glad to help other users in dire need of support.
Cons of Using SpiceWorks IT Help Desk
Ads and commercials
Since SpiceWorks IT Help Desk does not charge for its services, you can expect some ads and pop-ups here and there. It is understandable though, as they need to generate money one way or another.
Lacks several features
Since it is free, it lacks several features. It does not have multi-channel communication or interaction tracking. It also does not offer change, incident, or SLA management. If you need these aspects, then you may need to shift to a paid issue tracking software.
Taiga claims itself to be the premiere issue tracking software for multi-functional groups. It makes use of Scrum, which ranks backlogs so the team members can resolve them in a timely fashion.
Taiga also makes use of the Kanban methodology, where you can divide projects into different phases.
Taiga offers several pricing structures for its clients. The Basic plan is free and can accommodate up to 3 members working on 1 private project. However, it can be used for an unlimited number of public projects.
The Premium plan, on the other hand, costs $5 per member per month. This is granted that you are enrolled in a $60 annual plan. The price increases to $7 if you have only signed up for the monthly plan. Despite the price differences, this plan allows for an unlimited number of members – for an unlimited amount of private and public projects.
However, you get to have a discount if your enterprise is a non-government organization or an educational institution. If you qualify, you can enjoy a reduced rate of $1 per month. However, the minimum number of users should be 50.
Pros of Using Taiga
Many users rave about Taiga’s Kanban feature. After all, this gives the team member a sneak preview of the project – and what you can do to help finish these tasks.
Beautiful User Interface
Customers have nothing but praise for the Taiga user interface. It allows users to create cards easily. As an added bonus, this interface shows the progress of each team member. This allows for easy monitoring on the supervisor’s part.
Drag and drop functionality
Apart from its wonderful user interface, Taiga comes with a drag and drop functionality that most users love. With that being said, this feature helps make task management and organization a whole lot easier.
Cons of Using Taiga
Sluggish performance at times
While it’s not always the case, many users find that Taiga loads slower than other tracking systems. This could be a boon if you need to work on certain bugs fast.
Lack of mobile application
Unfortunately, Taiga does not come with a mobile app. This can be a drawback for most, especially if you can’t always access a PC right away.
ZenDesk promises powerful solutions to new challenges in the field of IT. It is one of the most trusted programs, as it has serviced more than 200,000 companies across the globe.
Founded in 2007, ZenDesk’s Support Suite offers assistance through various channels. It provides more personal support approaches as you try to resolve tickets and issues.
When it comes to issue tracking, ZenDesk has everything you could ever want in a program. It comes with assignment, escalation, project, task, and knowledge-based management. It also has a dashboard so you can audit issues (new and recurring) rather easily.
ZenDesk offers several plans for prospective customers. The Essential plan starts at $5 a month, while the Team plan costs $19. The best option for most businesses is the Professional plan, which costs about $49 monthly.
Pros of Using ZenDesk
Easily viewable tickets
ZenDesk has a Views screen where users can see all issues, whether they are new or still pending. This helps make sure that no problem is left unattended.
Immediate issue notification
Time is of the essence when it comes to customer service. If you are looking for a system that notifies you of tickets immediately, then ZenDesk is for you. Since it can be integrated with Slack and e-mails, you get alerted with customer issues as soon as they are received.
Promotes customer satisfaction
ZenDesk is made for improving customer support. Users are presented with vital client information, as well as the solutions for the problems at hand. This allows the rep to maintain good rapport with the customer – something vital for brand loyalty.
Cons of Using ZenDesk
Inadequate training feature
While ZenDesk comes with an online training program, some users deem it to be lacking or incomplete. There’s no real-life training option, which means it may take you some time before you get proficient with the program.
Chat feature slows down the website
While ZenDesk’s chat feature is vital for good customer service, it can slow down your website speed by as much as 30%. This may be catastrophic for business since some clients tend to leave sites that perform sluggishly.
As the name suggests, this program promises to help you log and track bugs easily. Depending on your criteria, you can create different visuals for your issue tracker tool.
It also offers an automated bug tracker tool, where you are notified via e-mail for any potential problems. This makes sure that you are informed promptly whenever an issue arises.
Zoho BugTracker is something you can customize easily. You can make your own fields and workflows, so you can meet the requirements of your various projects.
BugTracker can also be integrated into other programs, such as Google, Dropbox, Gitbucket, Zapier, and ZohoDesk (which will be discussed next).
Zoho BugTracker offers a free plan for a maximum of 3 users. The Standard plan, which costs $2.5 per user per month, is suitable for 6 client users working on up to 10 projects. The Premium plan is not far up at $3 per user per month. It can host up to 15 users, and an unlimited number of projects.
Pros of Using Zoho BugTracker
Whether you are a neophyte or a professional, you will definitely enjoy Zoho BugTracker’s simple layout. Even better, you can use your e-mail or app to add bugs into the ticketing system.
Zoho BugTracker is one of the more affordable issue tracking software systems in the market. Despite the cheap price, you get a lot of features. With the $3 Premium plan, you get custom functions and notifications, as well as webhooks and Bitbucket or Github integration.
Cons of Using Zoho BugTracker
Limited features for a free subscription
While you cannot ask a lot from free software, some users find it bothersome. For example, there is no bug export option for the free program. Adding this may help the subscribers stay loyal to the system.
Cannot re-add a deactivated user
If you are going to use Zoho BugTracker, you need to be sure of your user. That’s because you can’t deactivate them and add them to the project. Should this happen, you need to pay an additional $2.5 or $3, depending on your plan, to have him back on board.
As G2’s top-rated system with regards to customer satisfaction, ZohoDesk claims itself to be the best program for customer service.
It has a workflow automation feature, which allows you to program tedious manual activities. This also allows you to manage several processes, so you can check for other problems in the system.
ZohoDesk’s AI helps you rank tickets. This can help you check for anomalies, as well as analyze customer feedback. It also comes with an omnichannel feature, where you can converse with clients through the official website, social media, chat, e-mail, or phone.
ZohoDesk takes pride in its self-service program. It gives your website a knowledge base that browsers can check right away.
ZohoDesk comes at different price points. There is a free service for 3 agents, as well as a Standard program that charges $12 per agent per month. The Professional package costs higher at $20, while the Enterprise plan levies $35 per user monthly.
Pros of Using ZohoDesk
Ability to change plans mid-trial
Find that you want to upgrade to Enterprise, or downgrade to the Standard plan? You can easily do so during the 15-day trial period. With that being said, ZohoDesk is very flexible with your needs.
Accessible in multiple languages
Say you’re working with teams across the globe. If they aren’t well-versed in English, you need not worry since ZohoDesk supports multiple languages. That includes English, Spanish, French, Chinese, Japanese, Turkish, German, Russian, and Portuguese.
ZohoDesk offers discounts for up-front annual sign-ups. Discounts are given to non-profits and educational entities as well.
Cons of Using ZohoDesk
Very simple interface
While it could be useful for those who like looking at a clean interface, it may be problematic for some. That’s because this simple layout lacks pertinent information, such as the time the ticket was created. You have to click the ticket itself to get hold of such data.
Slow support response
It may take some time before you get a response from ZohoDesk. For most users, the reply is not even that useful. As such, if you need to resolve any ZohoDesk problems, it is better if you visit their dedicated forums.
Frequently Asked Questions
Q: What do I need to consider when choosing the right issue tracking software?
A: Before you buy an issue tracking system, you need to consider 5 things: budget, business scale, preference, accessibility, and social media integration.
While there are free ones such as Backlog, Bitrix24, Clubhouse, and SpiceWorks IT Help Desk, they have limited features. There is no problem if you can work with these.
However, if you need more, you can opt for paid subscriptions. Prices range, so before you sign up for the cheapest one, you need to ask about additional charges. Some have subscriptions that you need to pay for regularly. There are some that come with a one-time payment option.
This is best determined by the volume of products, customers, customer requests, and support agents. While small-scale enterprises are good for standard plans, large-scale companies usually benefit more from top-tier plans. After all, premium subscriptions usually offer support for an unlimited number of projects or users.
You need to ask yourself: what do I want for my support team and my customers? Do my techs need more features that are only available for top-tier subscriptions? Knowing your preferences can help you choose the best system that suits your budget.
Solutions need not be confined through one platform. You need software that can help you respond to most concerns wherever you might be. If you are always on the go, you might require a cloud-based program. However, if you are often confined in your business, you may be better off with software that you can install on your PC.
Social media integration
A lot of customers make use of social media platforms to report issues. If you want to be able to resolve these problems easily, then you may need to consider a system that can be integrated into your social media accounts. This will help cut the response time, which is always beneficial to customer loyalty.
Q: What are the benefits of having an issue tracking software?
A: There are 4 benefits to having an issue tracking system. They are improved software performance, better return on investment, enhanced connectivity, and a comprehensive recording of issues.
Improved software performance
Small maintenance issues on your website can pile up if they are left unattended. An issue tracking software can help you avoid this because it can flag issues easily. As such, you can respond to these matters immediately. Remember, customers tend to leave websites that are slow or have a variety of problems.
Better return of investment
An issue tracking software can help prioritize bugs so that the more problematic ones are addressed right away. At the same time, smaller issues may be bumped for later. This translates to higher ROI since it helps keep your website up and running.
You need to pass issues through various channels before it can get solved. This is not a problem with an Issue tracking system, as it can help minimize the communication gap. Most systems have chat or e-mail notification, so tech support is informed of the bug right away.
Comprehensive recording of issues
As with any business, you need to know what went wrong – so you can avoid it in the future. An issue tracking software can document all the bugs that have happened to your system. This will keep your team members aware of which features need regular maintenance – or worse, replacement.
Q: I’ve always used spreadsheets to track issues in my small business. Why do I need to revert to an issue tracking software?
A: While spreadsheets are good in the beginning, it will not be as effective especially once your business starts to grow. Doubts about the encoded information, team progress, and collaboration should prod you to shift to issue tracking software.
It’s hard to update the info in spreadsheets
If a lot of people work on a certain issue, the info may not be updated as often as you wish. This is not a problem with an issue tracking system, as it provides a centralized system for all the involved users. You don’t have to browse through several sheets to check an issue. You just need to type the query into the system and you are good to go.
Spreadsheets can’t help you prioritize
If you are faced with multitudes of issues, you might find it hard to determine which should be finished first. You might be focusing on a task that is not as vital as the others.
This is not a concern as long as you have an issue tracking software. For one, it can help you rank issues according to urgency. As with hospital triage, the system shows the worst condition that needs the most attention.
Spreadsheets don’t show progress
As with any business, you need to see the progress regarding certain issues. Are they being fixed, or are they still defective? An issue tracking system can help you do this, as it allows you to visualize each team member’s activity.
At the same time, this can help you determine which users fare better. For one, he may have techniques or best practices that he can share with the rest of the team. This, of course, may help improve the productivity of the entire group.
Spreadsheets don’t facilitate collaboration
Spreadsheets work well if you are all alone. But if you need to work with two or more people, it may become a nightmare.
If you want to work seamlessly with other members of the team, then you are going to need an issue tracking software. It has a central system that allows collaboration, so you can see who has done which. This will help save time because you don’t have to do the same thing repeatedly.
Q: How does an issue tracking system keep issues to a minimum?
A: More than just detecting bugs, the software can help minimize reports through a knowledge base.
This is similar to this FAQs section, where all the possible questions are already answered. This will help reduce the workload of tech supports, so they can go ahead and focus on more pressing technical problems.
Since an issue tracking program keeps a record of all the issues, you can see which problem often affects your customers. This can help you updated website FAQs. After all, your problem last year may not be a concern today. Remember: 91% of customers will use a comprehensive knowledge base, instead of sending a ticket to customer reps.
An issue tracking software helps in the checking of certain bugs, missing documents, and other concerns. It is important for both small and big businesses, as it helps provide immediate support to wary consumers.
For one, it can help the company save some hard-earned money. A bug found in the initial phase will only cost $100, while one that is detected in the QA phase can cost you $1,500. To make matters worse, a bug found in the production phase can set you back a whopping $10,000!
There are many issue tracking systems available in the market, with fees ranging according to the services. There are also free programs, which of course, have limited features.
Whatever program you choose, you need to consider your budget, preference, accessibility, business scale, and social media integration. Granted that there are many programs out there, the reviews above can help you decide the best issue tracking software for your company.