Jira Service Management is known for its rich, modern incident and change management capabilities built for the DevOps era, while competitor ServiceDesk Plus by ManageEngine, is regarded for its ease of use. Let’s see how they stack up against each other…


Why Jira Service Management?

JSM is Atlassian’s answer to the ITSM world. It was created by Atlassian after research showed customers using Marketplace apps to turn their software projects into a makeshift service desk for internal users. After recognising their power, Atlassian used these apps to create the groundwork for JSM as we know it today.

JSM offers familiarity to users. It utilises the power of Jira’s core platform with workflows and custom fields to provide an adaptable, bespoke platform to suit the way your teams work. With a primary design focus on ITSM and operational based teams, JSM is verified as having the capability to house the four main processes in ITIL – Incident, Problem, Request, and Change Management – to provide standard processes and efficiency out of the box. During Gartner’s 2022 review of ITSM applications, JSM was recognised as a Leader.


JSM is primarily used by IT teams, but it is becoming popular amongst business teams like HR, Finance, and Legal where requests are common and often sent via email.

See our ninja guide to JSM to see what it can do for you.

ServiceDesk Plus

Why ServiceDesk Plus?

ServiceDesk Plus is an ITSM application owned by ManageEngine. It offers users the ability to manage incoming requests via the portal or email. It provides an easy platform to view and manage all issues to help businesses maintain minimal downtime.

With the ServiceDesk Plus enterprise edition, you get the three main processes of incident, problem, and change management, as well as access to asset and configuration management databases (CMDB). During Gartner’s 2021 review of ITSM applications, ServiceDesk Plus was recognised as a niche player.

Jira Service Management vs ServiceDesk Plus

Jira Service Management ServiceDesk Plus
Includes a free plan for 3 agents or less. No free plan.
The Atlassisn Marketplace has 800+ plug-and-play apps. ServiceDesk Plus has no third-party Marketplace to customise your environment.
Supports small, medium, large, and enterprise deployments. Supports medium size deployments.
Offers customisable templates for ITSM, customer service, and business teams. Offers customisable templates for ITSM requests.


  • Both have the ability to filter tickets in a customisable view. Filtering incoming work allows you to sort requests into relevant queues, but more importantly, to proactively shift resources around, which can prevent incidents from worsening.
  • Both have a portal that enable customers to select the right type of request from a catalogue. Having a catalogue means you can specify required information from the specific task at hand.
  • Both allow you to customise workflows and add custom fields to capture specific information (important for ensuring the application suits your team).
  • Both allow you to post internal notes and comments for customers. This is crucial in keeping a complete audit trail of what’s happening with a ticket, while only allowing certain comments to be visible to the end customer.
  • Both can create a knowledgebase and offer self serve articles for your customers. However, this is limited for ServiceDesk Plus. A knowledgebase is vital in deflecting easy-to-handle requests by enabling customers to find the information needed to fix it themselves. This gives agents more time to focus on higher priority requests.
  • Both applications have access to asset registers and configuration management databases (CMDBs) with the premium and enterprise editions.


  • Atlassian tools are open and adaptable, allowing for a huge Marketplace of third-party apps to be built and added on. JSM has over 1000 additional Marketplace apps that can extend its functionality to perfectly suit the needs of teams. Although ServiceDesk Plus does not have a Marketplace, it does offer integrations with Microsoft applications and Jira, just without extensive functionality capabilities.
  • JSM provides access to Opsgenie, Atlassian’s alert and event management tool. Opsgenie comes built in to JSM and provides major incident management capabilities. Opsgenie also provides teams with access to rotas and the ability to route tickets and notifications to resolver teams.
  • ServiceDesk Plus does not provide a mail handler like Atlassian does for JSM, but it does have a built in chat tool and integration to a telephony system. JSM only has access to a Marketplace app for a chat tool.
  • ServiceDesk Plus only provides an integration to link its asset management module to Azure. Atlassian's Insight asset register built into JSM integrates with AWS, SNOW, ServiceNow, and other third-party applications.
  • On ServiceDesk Plus, you must pay for the enterprise package in order to access the change management and problem management functionality, while JSM includes this in all licensing tiers.

Migrating from ServiceDesk Plus to Jira Service Management

If you are looking for a new service desk, JSM meets the needs of most teams, no matter how unique they are. If you are currently using ServiceDesk Plus and are interested in migrating to JSM, our experts offer advice and hassle-free data migrations from ServiceDesk Plus to Jira. Clearvision consultants can:

  • Transfer records from ServiceDesk Plus to Jira.
  • Create and optimise the setup and mapping of your new Jira instance.
  • Provide support during and after migrations.
  • Ensure users know how to use all of the capabilities of JSM through world-class training.
  • Migrate instances of the product to a secure and preferred Cloud environment.

Learn more about Jira Service Management.

Published: Jan 11, 2022

Updated: Dec 15, 2023