Zendesk vs JIRA Service Management: An In-depth Analysis

Zendesk vs Jira

Zendesk, the OG of customer support software, is jam-packed with everything you need for support but is often criticized for its complexity. They are the perfect example of ‘Great features come with great complexity.’

On the other hand, JIRA is the OG of enterprise project and issue management software. NASA uses JIRA Service Management to land rockets on Mars!

They have a product called JIRA Service Management, and today, we will compare two enterprise customer support software.

As these platforms square off, we’ll explore their strengths, unique capabilities, and which one might be your key to enhanced productivity and success. So, fasten your seatbelts as we embark on a journey through Zendesk and JIRA Service Management, where support excellence meets project mastery.

QUICK NOTE: If you are a startup or SMB, Zendesk or JIRA might not be a good fit for you. Check out ThriveDesk, our take on customer support software for startups or SMBs.

Zendesk vs Jira at a glance

NicheSmall to mid-sized businessesSmall to mid-sized businesses
Starting price$55$77.50
Free trial30 days7 days

Overview of Zendesk

Zendesk Chat

Zendesk is your trusted ally in customer service. Designed for all kinds of businesses, from small startups to giant enterprises, it’s the secret weapon that keeps customers happy.

With Zendesk, customer questions are a breeze to handle. You get a dashboard that makes creating, tracking, and organizing tickets super easy. It’s like your customer support command center.

Zendesk lets you chat with customers through email, chat, social media, or even over the phone. So, no matter where your customers are, you’re there too.

Big names like Airbnb and Shopify already trust Zendesk. It’s like having a global support team at your fingertips.

Zendesk also plays well with others. It can team up with tools like Salesforce and Slack, so everything runs smoothly.

So, whether you’re a startup or a global giant, Zendesk’s got your back for top-notch customer support.

Overview of JIRA Service Management

JIRA Service Management

JIRA Service Management, developed by Atlassian, is a versatile project management and issue-tracking software trusted by teams across diverse industries. It excels in efficient issue tracking, allowing teams to create, assign, and prioritize tasks seamlessly.

What does JIRA Service Management stand for? It was named after GoJIRA Service Management. Inspired by one of the names of the debugging tools used during development, Bugzilla, JIRA Service Management was born!

JIRA Service Management is renowned for its agile project management capabilities, supporting methodologies like Scrum and Kanban. Its customizable workflows empower teams to define unique processes while reporting and dashboards provide valuable insights for decision-making.

JIRA Service Management flexibility extends to integrations with a wide range of tools, ensuring seamless collaboration. It offers multiple deployment options, robust security features, and automation capabilities to enhance efficiency. In addition, JIRA Service Management’s roadmap feature aids in long-term project planning, and the Atlassian Marketplace provides various apps to extend functionality.

In summary, JIRA Service Management equips teams with a powerful suite of features to streamline project management and collaboration. It is a go-to choice for software development, marketing, and beyond industries.

Comparative Analysis: Key Features and Functionality

When comparing Zendesk and JIRA Service Management, evaluating their core features and functionalities is essential to determine which platform best suits your organization’s customer support needs. Let’s explore how Zendesk and JIRA Service Management stack up in terms of basic functionalities required by helpdesk software. 

FeaturesZendeskJIRA Service Management
IntegrationsZendesk integrates with over 1,000 apps, including Salesforce, HubSpot, and Google WorkspaceJIRA Service Management integrates with over 5700 apps, including Slack, Confluence, and Trello
Self-service portalZendesk offers a self-service portal where customers can find answers to their questions and troubleshoot issues on their ownJIRA Service Management also offer a self-service portal similar to most helpdesk software
Live chatZendesk offers live chat for customer support agents to communicate with customers in real timeJIRA Service Management offers it’s live chat in the form of an integration available in the atlassian marketplace called Q chat which can be integrated in both websites and customer service portals 
ReportingZendesk offers a variety of reports that help businesses track customer support metrics, such as ticket volume, response time, and customer satisfactionJIRA Service Management offers a variety of reports that help businesses track project management metrics, such as sprint velocity, task completion rate, and time spent on tasks
Mobile appZendesk offers a mobile app for both iOS and AndroidJIRA Service Management offers a mobile app for both iOS and Android
AIZendesk’s AI chatbots are powered by Answer Bot, Zendesk’s own AI technology. Answer Bot can understand common customer queries and answer them using your knowledge base. Answer Bot can also be used to create custom chatbots that can answer specific customer questions or provide support for specific products or servicesJIRA Service Management has a virtual assistant powered by Atlassian Intelligence, which is a powerful generative AI equipped with a best-in-class Natural Language Processing engine. It assists agents and customers alike with lightning fast conversational customer support 
Customer supportZendesk offers 24/7 customer support via phone, email, and chatJIRA Service Management offers 24/7 customer support via email and chat
Ticket ManagementZendesk excels in ticket management, providing a user-friendly interface for creating, tracking, and organizing customer tickets. Its customizable ticketing system allows agents to prioritize and assign tickets efficiently, ensuring timely responses and resolutionsJIRA Service Management is a project management tool that also offers ticket management features. Its ticket management system is not as robust as Zendesk’s, but it can be used to track and manage issues related to projects
AutomationZendesk’s automation is more customer support-centric. Zendesk offers powerful automation capabilities through its “Triggers” and “Automation” features. These allow businesses to automate repetitive tasks, send notifications, and set predefined actions based on specified conditions, saving time and improving efficiency.JIRA Service Management’s automation capabilities are tailored to project management, software development, and workflow optimization, making it ideal for these purposes

Our pick: Zendesk

Some additional Comparison metrics

Unique Features

When considering Zendesk and JIRA Service Management, it’s essential to highlight their unique features and how they cater to different aspects of business operations.


Zendesk impresses with its rich marketplace of third-party integrations and extensions. This feature allows businesses to tailor the platform to their specific needs, extending its functionality to address various requirements. What sets Zendesk apart is its AI-powered chatbot, “Answer Bot,” which can efficiently respond to customer inquiries, enhancing response times and automating certain support processes.

JIRA Service Management

In contrast, JIRA Service Management shines in the realm of project and issue tracking. While not a customer support-focused platform like Zendesk, JIRA Service Management excels in agile project management. Its strength lies in customizable workflows, ideal for teams following agile methodologies such as Scrum and Kanban. JIRA Service Management also boasts robust reporting and dashboard features for actionable insights into project progress. It uses a powerful virtual agent called JIRA Service Management virtual agent which is also very proficient at dealing with customer queries, cutting down on response time and automating certain support processes just like Zendesk Answer Bot.

Both Zendesk and JIRA Service Management offer unique capabilities, but they cater to different organizational needs. Zendesk focuses on customer support, while JIRA Service Management excels in project management and collaboration. The choice between them should be based on your specific requirements and priorities, ensuring a seamless fit with your organization’s operational objectives.

Our pick: JIRA Service Management. Their virtual agent is a powerful component when it comes to unique features.

Pricing and Plans

When considering helpdesk solutions like Zendesk and JIRA Service Management, understanding the pricing models and plans is crucial to make an informed decision. Let’s compare the pricing structures of both platforms, evaluate their value for money and scalability, and analyze any additional costs or hidden charges that may be associated with each platform. 

PricingZendeskJIRA ThriveDesk
Pricing ModelPer user per monthPer user per monthPer user per month
Number of Pricing Tiers4 (Suite Team, Growth, Professional, Enterprise)4 (Free, Standard, Premium, Enterprise)3 (Starter, Plus, Enterprise)
Trial Period14 days7 days7 days
Free Plan AvailableNoYesNo
Lowest Priced Paid Plan$55/agent/month billed annually (Suite Team)$790/user/year$25/month billed annually (Starter)
Highest Priced Published Plan$149/agent/month billed monthly (Suite Professional)$1,525/user/year$49/month billed annually (Plus)
Enterprise PricingYesYesYes
Annual Billing DiscountYesYesYes
Add-on/Integration PricingAdditional costAdditional costNo added cost
Ease of Cost EvaluationEasyEasyEasy

If your business is on a tight budget, a Zendesk alternative or Jira alternative worth considering is ThriveDesk. They provide uncomplicated pricing plans tailored to accommodate various business needs. With just two options to select from, it simplifies the decision-making process for business owners. Opt for the plan that aligns with both your support needs and budget, whether you operate as a small team or a burgeoning enterprise.

Starter$25/month (4 seats)
Plus$85/month (10 seats)

Our pick: JIRA Service Management. Has a free plan.

Value for Money and Scalability

When it comes to choosing a helpdesk and project management solution for your business, assessing the value for money and scalability of the platforms is paramount. Let’s compare Zendesk and JIRA Service Management in terms of how they handle these crucial aspects, helping you make an informed decision.


Zendesk offers a tiered pricing structure that caters to businesses of all sizes and growth stages. This approach allows you to start with a plan that suits your current needs and then scale up as your business expands. This flexibility especially benefits startups and small businesses looking to manage costs effectively.

As you move up Zendesk’s pricing tiers, you can access advanced functionalities such as chatbots, customizable knowledge bases, and performance dashboards. These features can significantly enhance the value for businesses seeking to provide top-tier support to their customers. The ability to customize your support tools ensures that you’re only paying for the features that align with your specific requirements, making Zendesk a cost-effective choice.

JIRA Service Management

JIRA Service Management employs a transparent pricing model, billing on a per-user per-month basis. This straightforward approach simplifies cost calculations and allows for easy scalability. It’s worth noting that JIRA Service Management’s integration with other Atlassian tools can enhance the overall value, as these integrations create a cohesive ecosystem for project management and collaboration.

As your business grows, you can easily add more users to your JIRA Service Management plan, ensuring that your project management capabilities align with your expanding team. However, it’s important to consider the impact of integrated tools on pricing. Depending on the selected plan, additional features from the Atlassian suite may become available, affecting the overall cost.

Our pick. Tie. Both have competitive pricing.

Additional Costs and Hidden Charges

When selecting a helpdesk or project management platform, it’s crucial to consider the base pricing and any potential additional costs and hidden charges that may impact your budget. Let’s delve into how Zendesk and JIRA Service Management handle these aspects.


Zendesk’s pricing is relatively straightforward, with a per-agent per-month model. However, it’s essential to be aware of potential additional costs that might arise. Some of these costs could include:

  • Customizations: Zendesk offers options like branding, fields, and workflows for tailored solutions. Customizations can be pricey and might need Zendesk support.
  • Add-on modules: Enhance Zendesk with modules like Talk (voice call), Chat (live chat), and Sell (CRM). These boost functionality but come at an added cost and may require Zendesk support.
  • API usage fees: Zendesk bills for API use beyond a limit, potentially costly for heavy API users.
  • Overage fees: Exceeding monthly plan limits results in overage fees, with costs varying by plan and resource usage.

JIRA Service Management

JIRA Service Management also employs a clear per-user per-month pricing model. However, similar to Zendesk, there are potential additional costs to consider:

  • Integrated Tools: JIRA Service Management’s integration with other Atlassian tools, such as Confluence and Trello, can be a significant asset. Still, if you opt to use these additional tools, they may come with their own subscription fees.
  • Plugin Costs: JIRA Service Management Marketplace offers a wide range of plugins and extensions to enhance functionality. Some of these plugins may require separate purchases.
  • Data Storage: Depending on your data storage needs, additional costs may apply if you exceed the allocated storage limits in your plan.
  • Training and Support: Like Zendesk, JIRA Service Management may charge for extra training or premium support services beyond what’s included in your plan.

Our pick: No winners in this category either. Both are very sneaky when it comes to hidden costs. We advise you to carefully review their pricing plans and policies before picking either. 

User Experience and Interface

The user experience and interface of a helpdesk or project management solution significantly impact its effectiveness in facilitating smooth operations. Let’s assess the user experience and interface of both Zendesk and JIRA Service Management, considering key factors like navigation, customization, and overall usability. We’ll also incorporate user feedback and reviews to provide insights into the practicality of each platform.


  • Zendesk boasts a user-friendly interface designed for effortless navigation. Its dashboard offers a centralized hub for ticket management, customer interactions, and performance metrics, empowering agents to access pertinent information swiftly.
  • Customization is one of Zendesk’s strengths, enabling businesses to tailor the interface to their unique needs. Whether it’s customizable ticket fields, branding elements, or knowledge base designs, Zendesk allows organizations to align the platform seamlessly with their brand identity and support processes.
  • User feedback underscores Zendesk’s user-friendly interface, with positive reviews commending its intuitive design and user-friendliness. Users find immense value in the straightforward ticket management system and the flexibility to customize workflows according to their specific support requirements.

JIRA Service Management 

  • JIRA Service Management also prioritizes a seamless customer experience, with a focus on intuitive navigation and accessibility. Its interface is organized and clutter-free, presenting information in a structured manner through a well-designed dashboard.
  • JIRA Service Management provides ample customization options to cater to diverse business needs. Users can customize workflows, ticket forms, and layouts, ensuring that the platform adapts seamlessly to their unique project management processes.
  • User reviews consistently highlight JIRA Service Management’s user-friendly interface. Users appreciate its simplicity and ease of navigation, which is further enhanced by the platform’s comprehensive features. The intuitive design and structured interface contribute significantly to a better customer satisfaction and positive user experience.

Our pick: Zendesk. More intuitive and easier to use. JIRA Service Management has a bit of a learning curve for first-time users.

Customer Feedback and Reviews

In terms of G2 ratings, Zendesk and JIRA Service Management are both well-rated platforms. Zendesk has a rating of 4.3 out of 5 stars, based on over 5,600 reviews. JIRA Service Management has a rating of 4.3 out of 5 stars, based on over 5000 reviews.


Zendesk users appreciate its intuitive interface and extensive integration options, contributing to its reputation as a user-friendly platform. Zendesk’s reporting tools also receive praise for aiding in the monitoring of customer support team performance. However, some concerns include its pricing, which may be steep for smaller businesses, and challenges in customizing the platform to precise needs.

JIRA Service Management

JIRA Service Management is commended for robust project management capabilities, enhancing workflow efficiency and team collaboration. Yet, the platform’s learning curve can be steep for newcomers, and its pricing structure, particularly in conjunction with other Atlassian tools, may pose budget considerations for some organizations.

The general consensus between their customers focuses on a few common patterns.

Our pick: Zendesk. Acknowledging that this is a subjective category we looked at 100 reviews for each and considering the limited sample size, Zendesk had more reviews over 4 stars compared to JIRA Service Management.

Zendesk vs JIRA Service Management: Pros and Cons Face-Off 


Wide range of features, including ticketing, knowledge base, live chat, and automationCan be expensive, especially for larger businesses
Excellent customer supportThe mobile app is not as user-friendly as the web app
Easy to use and customizableSome users have reported issues with performance
Integrations with other popular softwareNo free plan

JIRA Service Management

Powerful project management capabilitiesLearning curve for beginners
Highly customizable for various use casesPricing may become a concern, especially when integrated with other Atlassian products
Integrates seamlessly with other Atlassian toolsPrimarily focused on project management and development, may not be as versatile for other business functions
Offers robust workflow automationPricing may be an issue while scaling team
Has a free plan

Which is right for you?

Choosing between Zendesk and JIRA Service Management hinges on your specific requirements. If you prioritize comprehensive customer support with a diverse feature set, Zendesk is a strong contender. However, JIRA Service Management could be ideal if your needs lean toward robust project management and workflow automation.

Here’s a summary table outlining the key differences between Zendesk and JIRA Service Management, along with an alternative worth considering:

PriceStarts at $69, billed monthlyStarts at $21, billed monthlyStarts at $35 billed monthly
FeaturesLive chat, ticket management, knowledge base, self-service portal, automation, reporting and analyticsSelf-service portal, knowledge base, and reporting and analyticsTicket management, live chat, knowledge base, shared inbox, self-service portal and reporting 
Ease of useCan be complex to useCan be complex for new usersEasy to use and configure
ScalabilityScalable with good growth speed to value ratio but only at enterprise levelGood growth speed to value ratio and scalable to meet the needs of growing businessesBetter utilized for small to mid-sized businesses
CommunityLarge and active community of users and developersLarge and active community of users and developersActive community of developers and contributors 
Customer support24/7 support via email, chat and phone24/7 support via email and chat24/7 support via email 

ThriveDesk: Customer Support solution for Startups and SMBs

ThriveDesk - Best Customer Support Software

In addition to Zendesk and Jira, alternative helpdesk solutions are available in the market. One such alternative worth considering is ThriveDesk. ThriveDesk is a feature-rich helpdesk solution that offers a comprehensive set of tools to manage customer support effectively.

ThriveDesk is a help desk software tailor-made for businesses seeking extensive features and a powerful yet simple live chat assistant. Even better, it’s the most cost-effective, lightweight, and speedy live chat solution available for Shopify business owners.

ThriveDesk empowers small businesses to manage real-time customer communications. Packed with convenient built-in features like shared inbox, instant replies, file sharing directly from the chat widget, emojis for effective communication, satisfaction surveys, sales tracking reports for eCommerce, knowledge base search, and monitoring capabilities, you can efficiently handle your Wix store operations.

Rest assured, ThriveDesk’s lightweight design and speed won’t impact the performance of your Wix-powered eCommerce website. The optimized agent interface ensures rapid responses for maximum efficiency, all while keeping your website running smoothly.

Rated 5 stars out of 5 on G2, ThriveDesk is highly regarded by users.

Key Features of ThriveDesk:

  • Anonymous Live Chat
  • Self Service Portal (WPPortal)
  • Third-party Integrations
  • Performance Metrics
  • Live Chat
  • Workflow Management
  • Alerts / Escalation
  • Multi-Channel Communication
  • Ticket Management
  • Customer Database
  • Email Management
  • Extensive Knowledge Base
  • Surveys & Feedback
  • Pricing for ThriveDesk starts at just $6.67 per month.

Pros of ThriveDesk:

  • Cost-effective, reducing agent costs
  • Minimizes customer effort
  • Easy installation and usage
  • Smooth onboarding experience
  • Seamless navigation between chat interactions
  • Real-time responses
  • ThriveDesk’s user-friendly interface, comprehensive resources (including a community, shared mailbox, and live chat), have made it a popular and trusted choice for Wix users. It comes highly recommended for its reliability and ease of use.

Cons of ThriveDesk:

  • Lack of native mobile alerts

With ThriveDesk, you can supercharge your website’s growth and streamline customer interactions like

Conclusion: Zendesk vs JIRA Service Management for Your Business

When deciding between Zendesk and JIRA Service Management to meet your business needs, it’s essential to consider a range of factors aligned with your organizational goals, operational requirements, and financial constraints. These two platforms offer distinct strengths, each serving unique aspects of your business.

Your choice between Zendesk and JIRA Service Management should align with your unique business needs. If your priority is delivering top-notch customer support and engagement, Zendesk is preferred. 

Conversely, JIRA Service Management offers a compelling solution if you focus on optimizing project management and development processes. 

Tailor your selection to match your objectives and leverage the full potential of Zendesk or JIRA Service Management to drive success in your organization. If you’re a small business looking for a more cost-effective solution to handle your customer support, ThriveDesk can be your go-to.

Want happy customer?
ThriveDesk has everything you need to thrive customer support
Get started for free
No Credit Card needed.
Related posts

You'd also like

Join over 1,000 support agents who are transforming their
support experience with our seamless platform.
Start today and elevate your support.
  • No credit card required
  • Full access to all features
  • Cancel at anytime