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Building Trust Between Support and Users at Skyscanner

"We have an open-door policy in respect to collaboration and we needed a tool that protected these values while bringing discipline and organization to our support."

John Paris

Principal Systems Engineer

Building Trust Between Support and Users at Skyscanner

"We have an open-door policy in respect to collaboration and we needed a tool that protected these values while bringing discipline and organization to our support."

John Paris
Principal Systems Engineer

Skyscanner is a metasearch engine and travel agency based in Edinburgh, Scotland that has more than 100 million users per month. The company prides itself on its open-door policy when it comes to collaboration, but its internal IT support was struggling to live up to those values. 

They were providing support entirely in Slack, but there was little organization or tracking back to Jira. This led to missed requests and lost trust between the agent and users.

“We had up to 20% of our contacts being lost, so that was a lot of blood, sweat, tears and trust all being lost somewhere in Slack,” said John Paris, Principal Systems Engineer at Skyscanner.

The Skyscanner team decided to bring on HelpDesk+ to bring some simplicity and discipline to their support process. 

Pain Points in the Support Process

Being a data-driven company, Skyscanner sought to bring more tracking and transparency to their support process. Previously, support was taking place in Slack channels, and often requests were getting lost or taking too long to be resolved.

“50% of our requests were taking more than two days in some cases to be responded to or resolved. Two days is a lot of time especially when velocity matters to engineers,” said Paris.

In addition, since there was no clear system for asking for support, often tickets were never created in the first place or the onus was put on the agents to do all the tracking. 

“It was just the agents logging all the requests and there were no expectations put on the customers, so we’ve taken that zero effort from the customer and found some middle ground,” said Paris.

From Lost Tickets to Real-Time Support

After implementing HelpDesk+, Skyscanner was able to allow both agents and customers to move tickets forward using their preferred methods. The two-way connection between Jira and Slack broke down barriers between agents and customers.

“One of the real benefits of HelpDesk+ is that our agents can work entirely in Jira if they want or entirely in Slack,” said Paris. “They have that choice. Whereas our customers love Slack.”

HelpDesk+ brought much-needed organization and simplicity to the support process, which has improved the speed at which support is given. 

“The requests are now being dealt with in near-real-time. You can watch a conversation taking place in a channel and you see people’s problems being addressed there and then without any delay,” said Paris.

The change in Skyscanner’s support process has resulted in a vast improvement in issue tracking and support speed. 

“We’ve logged 3 times as many requests. We’ve gone from 160 requests to more than 500 in a month. And now our request response time is hours instead of days,” said Paris.

Improved Agent and Customer Satisfaction

In addition to the improved support process for agents and customers, both groups have reported that they are enjoying a boost in productivity and overall satisfaction. 

One of the unexpected benefits that Skyscanner saw, was how the new process helped agents feel confident and happy in their work.“There’s a feeling of mental wellbeing for some of our agents,” said Paris.

The organization that the HelpDesk+’s interface brought to their workday helped agents work more efficiently. Paris shared, “For those who like to be organized and have nice lists and at the end of the day feel good about what they’ve achieved, HelpDesk+ has been a real benefit for them.”

For customers, the reduction in context switching means they can focus on their work without being sidetracked.

“The fact that our engineers can stay focused on one particular issue and they’re not being dragged out of Slack, that’s a real benefit,” said Paris.

Roadmap Collaboration

From the beginning of their relationship with Nextup, Skyscanner has taken an active role in helping shape the roadmap for HelpDesk+. At Nextup, we frequently work closely with our customers and take their feedback into account when planning our next feature or release. 

Similar to Skyscanner’s collaboration values, Nextup takes a similar open-door approach with our customers. In reference to this collaborative approach to development, Paris says, “Seeing the roadmap and what the future is like, and trying to play our part in that future has been a big benefit to us.”

Nextup created a knowledge-based integration feature for HelpDesk+ with Skyscanner in mind, to help their users help themselves. We continue to refine this tool, in collaboration with their team, to meet the needs of their vast Confluence database. 

Key Results:

Skyscanner reports that the trust between their agents and customers has been restored and their support process functions with improved organization and results including:

  • 3x increase in tickets logged (from 160 to 500+ per month)
  • Issues resolved in hours vs days (previously averaged 2 days)
  • No longer losing track of issues (previously up to 20% were lost)
  • Development teams are able to work more efficiently

You can watch the full interview with John Paris, Principal Systems Engineer at Skyscanner below.


- 0:51 Pain points in Skyscanner's support process

- 2:34 Lost tickets and lack of trust

- 3:30 Why Skyscanner chose Helpdesk+

- 5:03 Implementation of HelpDesk+

- 6:46 From time lag to real-time support

- 7:51 Auto-create feature resulted in more tickets logged

- 9:27 Results after the rollout of HelpDesk+

- 11:07 Improved agent and customer satisfaction

- 12:58 Experience working with Nextup

About Skyscanner:

Founded in 2003, Skyscanner is a leading travel marketplace dedicated to putting travelers first. Skyscanner helps millions of people in 52 countries and over 30 languages find the best travel options for flights, hotels and car hire every month. Skyscanner is available on desktop, mobile web and its highly rated app has 100 million downloads. Working with 1200 travel partners, Skyscanner's mission is to lead the global transformation to modern and sustainable travel.    


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