Cherwell Service Management vs. SolarWinds Service Desk (SSD)

Overview
ProductRatingMost Used ByProduct SummaryStarting Price
Cherwell Service Management
Score 7.3 out of 10
N/A
Cherwell Software was founded by the former CEO of FrontRage Solutions and is a full suite of service management tools competing with BMC Remedy, ServiceNow, and IBM SmartCloud.N/A
SolarWinds Service Desk
Score 8.1 out of 10
N/A
SolarWinds Service Desk (formerly Samanage) is a cloud-based, multi-tenant IT service desk and asset management software for IT and enterprise service management. Samanage is on a single, always new instance of software. The service desk includes a self-service portal, service catalog, knowledge base, and SLA management tool. The integrated agent-based asset management solution collects contracts and licensing data from Windows, Mac, Linux, and Unix systems.N/A
Pricing
Cherwell Service ManagementSolarWinds Service Desk (SSD)
Editions & Modules
No answers on this topic
No answers on this topic
Offerings
Pricing Offerings
Cherwell Service ManagementSolarWinds Service Desk
Free Trial
NoYes
Free/Freemium Version
NoNo
Premium Consulting/Integration Services
NoNo
Entry-level Setup FeeNo setup feeNo setup fee
Additional Details
More Pricing Information
Community Pulse
Cherwell Service ManagementSolarWinds Service Desk (SSD)
Considered Both Products
Cherwell Service Management
Chose Cherwell Service Management
When I did the shopping for an ITSM solution, I found that ITSM solutions seemed to (at the time, anyway) fall into two rough categories and a small third category. In the first larger category, there were a group of the "out of the box", quick to implement but immature and …
SolarWinds Service Desk
Chose SolarWinds Service Desk (SSD)
Solarwinds was HIPAA compliant out of the box. That was very helpful for us.
Chose SolarWinds Service Desk (SSD)
We went with SWSD because of the ease of usability. The UI was very easy for everyone who tested the various platforms to understand and navigate. We also felt that the customer service and support of the Samanage team was above the rest. Knowing that any solution we went …
Top Pros
Top Cons
Features
Cherwell Service ManagementSolarWinds Service Desk (SSD)
Incident and problem management
Comparison of Incident and problem management features of Product A and Product B
Cherwell Service Management
9.6
53 Ratings
17% above category average
SolarWinds Service Desk (SSD)
8.0
96 Ratings
2% below category average
Organize and prioritize service tickets10.052 Ratings9.395 Ratings
Expert directory9.541 Ratings7.956 Ratings
Service restoration9.835 Ratings7.357 Ratings
Self-service tools9.851 Ratings8.085 Ratings
Subscription-based notifications9.438 Ratings8.967 Ratings
ITSM collaboration and documentation9.448 Ratings8.176 Ratings
ITSM reports and dashboards9.651 Ratings6.486 Ratings
ITSM asset management
Comparison of ITSM asset management features of Product A and Product B
Cherwell Service Management
9.7
44 Ratings
17% above category average
SolarWinds Service Desk (SSD)
6.9
81 Ratings
17% below category average
Configuration mangement9.742 Ratings6.973 Ratings
Asset management dashboard9.741 Ratings6.980 Ratings
Policy and contract enforcement9.731 Ratings6.963 Ratings
Change management
Comparison of Change management features of Product A and Product B
Cherwell Service Management
9.8
50 Ratings
16% above category average
SolarWinds Service Desk (SSD)
8.0
79 Ratings
4% below category average
Change requests repository9.848 Ratings8.663 Ratings
Change calendar9.844 Ratings7.743 Ratings
Service-level management9.845 Ratings7.871 Ratings
Best Alternatives
Cherwell Service ManagementSolarWinds Service Desk (SSD)
Small Businesses
Agiloft Flexible Service Desk Suite
Agiloft Flexible Service Desk Suite
Score 9.0 out of 10
Agiloft Flexible Service Desk Suite
Agiloft Flexible Service Desk Suite
Score 9.0 out of 10
Medium-sized Companies
Agiloft Flexible Service Desk Suite
Agiloft Flexible Service Desk Suite
Score 9.0 out of 10
Agiloft Flexible Service Desk Suite
Agiloft Flexible Service Desk Suite
Score 9.0 out of 10
Enterprises
ManageEngine ServiceDesk Plus
ManageEngine ServiceDesk Plus
Score 9.3 out of 10
ManageEngine ServiceDesk Plus
ManageEngine ServiceDesk Plus
Score 9.3 out of 10
All AlternativesView all alternativesView all alternatives
User Ratings
Cherwell Service ManagementSolarWinds Service Desk (SSD)
Likelihood to Recommend
9.5
(57 ratings)
7.9
(118 ratings)
Likelihood to Renew
9.9
(13 ratings)
6.5
(8 ratings)
Usability
8.7
(5 ratings)
8.9
(7 ratings)
Availability
8.2
(3 ratings)
8.7
(7 ratings)
Performance
6.4
(1 ratings)
8.9
(4 ratings)
Support Rating
6.6
(16 ratings)
8.0
(92 ratings)
In-Person Training
8.7
(2 ratings)
9.1
(1 ratings)
Online Training
9.1
(1 ratings)
8.2
(2 ratings)
Implementation Rating
9.0
(3 ratings)
8.9
(3 ratings)
Configurability
9.1
(2 ratings)
7.3
(1 ratings)
Contract Terms and Pricing Model
9.1
(1 ratings)
-
(0 ratings)
Ease of integration
9.1
(1 ratings)
4.5
(1 ratings)
Product Scalability
8.2
(1 ratings)
8.9
(4 ratings)
Professional Services
7.3
(1 ratings)
-
(0 ratings)
Vendor post-sale
6.4
(1 ratings)
8.2
(2 ratings)
Vendor pre-sale
-
(0 ratings)
7.7
(2 ratings)
User Testimonials
Cherwell Service ManagementSolarWinds Service Desk (SSD)
Likelihood to Recommend
Ivanti
Well suited in an IT environment where you have limited staff. It can be managed by one administrator. Reliability of the SaaS environment has been excellent. Flexibility in developing automated workflows to open, manage, and close Incidents. Change Management due to ability to modify OOB to meet the needs of our staff. Contract Management allowing us to be notified when a contract or license is up for renewal and setting reminders. Integrations are not easy to create and manage.
Read full review
SolarWinds
If you are looking for a way to support a company and bill based on the outcome this software works really well. If it's a quick password change there was no charge, but if it's troubleshooting things you click the box to charge. It works really well for this. Also bringing all your assets into this and associating them to a client works well. I can't think of anything that this software would not be less appropriate for. It works well for what we use it for.
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Pros
Ivanti
  • Cherwell's email handling automation works flawlessly. The only time that I have ever needed to reset the automation service that drives it is when my own server that houses the small connecting agent has some kind of problem and disconnects us from our hosted Cherwell instance. It just works. Emails to a certain address always result in a new ticket or update to an existing ticket.
  • Cherwell is literally 100% customization in so many ways that it would be pointless to try to enumerate them. There is a very sizable list of already-created customizations (called "mApps") that you can download and apply to your instance. If you don't like them you can roll them back in seconds. But you can add and configure entire modules using one of these pre-defined, completely free, add-on packages. It's so easy to add features this way that I check the list of available mApps every month or so just to see what functionality I can add.
Read full review
SolarWinds
  • Approval flows: You can have multiple layers of approval required for the tickets and service requests you design. This helps us show auditors that access to privileged systems and data was formerly reviewed and approved by the appropriate managers.
  • Easy to design forms: You don't need to spend hours reading the documentation to figure out how to create forms. It's simple enough that you can just jump right in and start creating them with minimal training.
  • Lots of options and features are available for you to include in your forms.
  • Integrates well with SAML-based SSO and has capabilities for MFA.
  • Easy and useful search function. Need to find that ticket from last year that you worked for a particular user or issue? Just search by keyword or username, and it'll quickly find the ticket.
Read full review
Cons
Ivanti
  • Cherwell lacks modern UI capabilities such as responsive forms and CSS styling for web portals.
  • Built-in reporting engine is hard to use and resource intensive to run.
  • No patching model for small platform fixes, must upgrade to receive platform code changes.
Read full review
SolarWinds
  • There is potential to greatly improve the capacity for cascading attributes. Currently, categories are limited to a top-level category and one subcategory. This leaves a fairly shallow decision tree.
  • Greater flexibility to modify the layout of incident request forms.
  • More integration options for cloud file-sharing platforms. Solarwinds Service Desk has tie-ins to Dropbox but not other vendors.
Read full review
Likelihood to Renew
Ivanti
Cherwell is still the best tool for the job in the market. Even though Ivanti bought them and are trying to convince everyone to move over to Neurons for ITSM, they have stated Cherwell will remain supported indefinitely and have a roadmap for future Cherwell development. Unfortunately, ISM is not as flexible as Cherwell (and the UX is atrocious), hence why many people are sticking with Cherwell (and why many Cherwell customers never purchased ISM originally)
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SolarWinds
My renewal is soon coming up, it is fairly likely I will renew again for the 5th year. I may consider evaluating what else is out there, It was requested by my staff to not make a change. They feel that SSD fits our needs, is easy to use and should keep it.
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Usability
Ivanti
I enjoy the layout and configuration of our Cherwell Service Management instance. It did take me a bit to get used to, as with any new ticketing system, but now that I understand the system more, I thoroughly enjoy it! There are just so many options and the UI is very intuitive.
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SolarWinds
Solarwinds Service Desk has a very "user friendly" interface. Everything looks nice and neat. And, learning how to use the system is very easy. It provides multiple services that are easy for most people to grasp, and allows for great organization of incidents and assets. Support for Solarwinds Service Desk has a good response and resolution time and are easy to work with.
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Reliability and Availability
Ivanti
Almost always available, with exception for a handful of outages due to infrastructure related issues
Read full review
SolarWinds
Because the data is stored on Amazon Web Services (AWS) there are very rarely any outages. There have been some times when the product has been slow to load, but because the interface is web based it could be anything between my computer and AWS that was causing the issue. But also, because the application is web based it can be access from anywhere which makes it very convenient
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Performance
Ivanti
The browser client is mostly acceptable in terms of performance, but still lacks parity with the rich client. The rich client is not very performant at all. It's built on old architecture and relies heavily on a fast internet connection, good caching and database indexing. There are several unwritten rules with form design (and form arrangement) which most users are not aware of, but can severely impact performance in the rich client. This is where the flexibility of Cherwell can come back to bite you if you step outside the boundaries of these unwritten rules
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SolarWinds
When the system is working, the pages load very quickly. We run reports all the time in the system. The reporting can be extremely complex or very simple. Either way, we have not had any issues with the reports. We do not currently integrate Solarwinds Service Desk with any other software.
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Support Rating
Ivanti
We generally have a good time with Cherwell support, however, there are the few niche cases where I have to explain how Cherwell works to the customer support agent on the other end. A little more product education for tier 1 support could go a long way in helping expedite support requests from SaaS customers.
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SolarWinds
SolarWinds support department will respond to you quickly from the time of purchase to after-purchase instructions & supporting, and the company is great in customers support. In buying a software, our organization always has a priority for the seller and support and accountability is very important to us, and the manufacturer or seller must be responsible and supportive.
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In-Person Training
Ivanti
I didn't partake in the in-person training, but it was available. I preferred the online method instead, which was a great experience. It was nice to have someone available to bounce questions off of and demonstrate how certain functions worked.
Read full review
SolarWinds
No answers on this topic
Online Training
Ivanti
The training was great! We got together to review the system, its UI, and how to perform basic functions. Then there was plenty of time to ask questions and test out the system while there was someone available to assist.
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SolarWinds
When we first purchased Samanage (now Solarwinds) they provided us with an informational training session to show us all of the basics on how the service works and showed us everything we were interested in using. There are still some areas of Solarwinds that we do not yet utilize but I know if we choose to use them in the future we would be able to schedule another session with our representative to have them show us what we need to know.
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Implementation Rating
Ivanti
Implementation is a breeze. Each time I've implemented it, we had an outsourced vendor overseeing it & assisting where needed. However, Cherwell OOTB is ready to go, and configuring it for LDAP/SAML, etc. for authentication and user-imports is really straight forward. The infrastructure needed for Cherwell is extremely simple too - and installing the server & database takes no more than 20 mins
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SolarWinds
The implementation process for our organization was fairly simple. We set up an email address to receive the emails from the system (for incident creation), and we allowed the system to spoof our IT email to respond to requests. Solarwinds helped us with the rest of the implementation, and it took less than a week to get the system fully operational.
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Alternatives Considered
Ivanti
Much more customizable than other products, especially when ran in a self-hosted environment. Cherwell [Service Management] allows for greater flexibility of custom development and integrations to allow for automating tasks that traditional ITSM apps are not well suited for. Cherwell [Service Management] gives you the freedom to develop your own objects with minimal licensing costs.
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SolarWinds
We chose SolarWinds Service Desk for its user friendly platform compared to what we had. Its was easier for requestors to submit tickets, provide feedback, merge tickets, build a suitable approval process. Our organization had a hard time going back and forth with the end user on providing a status on their request or issue, where most users just didn't follow through or lost interest in their issue. We would have to send multiple emails to get any type of feedback and that's something we did not want to keep on doing.
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Contract Terms and Pricing Model
Ivanti
We have had great contracts with Cherwell and love the concurrent licensing model
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SolarWinds
No answers on this topic
Scalability
Ivanti
We have never had any major show-stopper issues with Cherwell itself - more so with the infrastructure it sits on. Moving from in-house cloud (on Cherwell's side), to AWS then to Azure has caused multiple problems over the years (some still on-going), however the product has remained fairly stable
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SolarWinds
We have over 500 computers and tablets across our organization and this has helped us greatly in keeping track of where computers are and who is currently using it. I can see this product being useful to groups both larger and smaller than us and I really appreciate this product.
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Professional Services
Ivanti
As mentioned, they were always great to work with (minus the project management side). My only feedback would be to push back on requirements that don't make sense
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SolarWinds
No answers on this topic
Return on Investment
Ivanti
  • As with any standard ticketing system, it helped decrease the time before first contact with clients.
  • Our department was always concerned with keeping a low budget, and it was cheaper than most.
  • My supervisor could easily tell how many resources were being put into each employee, so we had more visibility of our team's capabilities at a given time if we needed to take on something complex.
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SolarWinds
  • We are more easily able to quantify user satisfaction with support.
  • We are able to develop SLAs that quantify and define the obligation of our support teams.
  • The actual cost of Solarwinds Service Desk per agent user is high in our estimation. The more you implement this platform across your organization, the more tightly tethered you are to this solution.
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ScreenShots

SolarWinds Service Desk Screenshots

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