10 things you might not know about TOPdesk

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By Naïma Lachhab on

We dug up some obscure facts about TOPdesk. From our origin story to our opinion on Playmobil and Lego and why we like saying no – you can read it all in this blog. Enjoy!

1. Our CEO Wolter started his career as a programmer

Some CEOs are CEOs in name only. Not our Wolter Smit. He knows exactly what it’s like to work in IT service management. And no, not just from reading about it.

At 17 years old, he worked his way through university as a programmer at a small IT business. His friend Frank Droogsma, co-founder of TOPdesk, worked there as a help desk operator.

At this IT business, both Wolter and Frank experienced the problems help desk operators still face today first-hand. And from those problems, the idea for TOPdesk was born.

2. And he created TOPdesk’s first version in an attic

As a programmer, Wolter saw a lot of things happening that he felt could be done more effectively using software. Operators spending weeks on a single task, answering the same questions over and over and unable to keep track of important information.

So, he rolled up his sleeves and started coding in an attic in Delft. His goal? Helping other companies make their services better, simpler and smarter.

Over 25 years later, Wolter is still a geek at heart. Although he doesn’t code much anymore, he’s still actively involved in the development of our software.

3. TOPdesk has been around for over 25 years

When people hear the name TOPdesk, they often think we’re a young start-up company. We take that as a compliment. But we’re actually quite experienced: Wolter started developing the very first TOPdesk version in 1993, which then launched in 1994. By 1997, the TOPdesk journey had gained so many new customers and employees that they had to move out of their makeshift office in the attic because it just wasn’t big enough anymore.

4. We operate in 11 countries

Although TOPdesk was born in the Netherlands, customers across the globe use our software to streamline their IT service delivery. To offer the best possible service, we have to be where our customers are.

With that in mind, we opened our first international office in Germany in 2004. After that, other countries were quick to follow: the UK, Belgium, Hungary, Denmark, Norway. In 2013, we set up shop in Brazil. Then the USA, Canada, and in 2019, Australia.

Today, TOPdesk has 14 offices in 11 countries. This also means we can offer 24/5 global support, no matter where our customers are.

5. We prefer Playmobil over Lego

And no, this isn’t really about building things. Just think of service management software as Lego or Playmobil. It can either be tailored to your exact wishes like Lego or standardized like Playmobil.

With Lego, you need to find out what you want to build first and spend a lot of time finding the right parts before you can actually start building something. But once you’re ready to start building, Lego does allow you to build exactly the structure you want.

Playmobil, on the other hand, allows you to start building immediately. It has a more modular approach, and every piece has a specific place in the whole structure.

We’re like Playmobil in that sense. We offer an out-of-the-box solution that’s easy to implement. And although our software is standardized, it can still grow along with the needs of your organization. After all, standardized doesn’t mean static. We keep improving our software with the knowledge, experience and best practices we’ve gathered over the years.

We believe a tool isn’t the answer, but rather the means to achieve your goals. So why go for Lego and spend so much time – and money – on tailoring your own version when you can also opt for Playmobil and achieve better results?

We care more about building a strong partnership than making a sale

6. We don’t mind saying no

Even when it comes to potential customers. We care more about building a strong partnership than making a sale. And we find that our most successful partnerships are built with organizations who, like us, value freedom, trust, and responsibility.

Part of our promise to our customers is that we’ll be honest and straightforward about what we can offer and what you can achieve – even if it means occasionally saying ‘no’ to companies who aren’t the best fit.

7. We started TOPdesk offering a simple ticketing tool

But we’ve come a long way since then. We might have grown, but we never stopped believing in our purpose: helping people do the work they love and do best.

We still have everything in store to get your Incident Management up to standard, but we’re a match no matter your level of service delivery. Whether your organization has 20 or 2000 customers. And whether you want to streamline your IT service department only or want to branch out to Facility Management or HR as well.

8. We score a 4.6 on Gartner Peer Insights

Our customers like us. A lot. But don’t take our word for it. TOPdesk scores of 4.7 out of 5 on Gartner Peer Insights. Over 750 customers praise our fast implementation, user-friendly interface and the quality of our service and support.

9. We don’t believe in following ITIL (or other frameworks) to the letter

Obviously, ITIL makes some great recommendations about IT service management. But ITIL is a framework, not a rigid set of rules. Still, organizations often try to force ITIL guidelines on their processes without any regard for how their own organization actually works – and if it will benefit from ITIL.

Ultimately, like any other framework, ITIL is all about adopt and adapt. You have to make its guidelines work for the unique requirements of your own organization. After all, no two organizations are alike, so why should their processes be?

10. Our people set us apart

At TOPdesk, we believe that if our people are happy, our customers are happy. Yes – our software does the trick, is incredibly easy to use and integrates seamlessly with many other tools. But our people really stand out. They will always have your back. And that’s what customers notice. And what creates a loyal customer base.

TOPdesk may not be the only IT service management software on earth. But we sure have the best people. And that makes all the difference.

Naïma Lachhab

Content Marketer