Evaluation of User Support: Factors That Affect User Satisfaction With Helpdesks and Helplines

Lex S. van Velsen, Michaël F. Steehouder, Menno D.T. de Jong

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

17 Citations (Scopus)
108 Downloads (Pure)


In addition to technical documentation, face-to-face helpdesks and telephonic helplines are a powerful means for supporting users of technical products and services. This study investigates the factors that determine user satisfaction with helpdesks and helplines. A survey, based on the SERVQUAL framework and questionnaire, shows that the SERVQUAL dimensions of customer satisfaction are not applicable in these contexts. Three quality dimensions were found instead: solution quality, the experience of the consultation, and, in the case of a physical environment, the so-called tangibles. Helpdesk customers base their overall quality perceptions mainly on their experiences during a consultation, while helpline customers focus strongly on the quality of the solution offered. The study also found a connection between the perceived helpline quality and the appreciation of the primary service.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)219-231
Number of pages13
JournalIEEE transactions on professional communication
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - 2007


  • User support
  • Helpline
  • User satisfaction
  • Helpdesk


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