Cherwell Is OK If You Have a Babysitter
Updated July 20, 2021

Cherwell Is OK If You Have a Babysitter

David Crawford | TrustRadius Reviewer
Score 4 out of 10
Vetted Review
Verified User

Overall Satisfaction with Cherwell Service Management

We used Cherwell as our central IT ticket tracking system across the entire university. It was also used in a minor setting to track room usage by some departments, but its main function was IT ticket submission. We had several positions (help desk phone calls, lab technicians, etc) that used Cherwell portals we designed to submit issues only, and these issues would escalate where appropriate to other departments like ours.

Cherwell addressed the void we had of not having a central tracking system for IT issues. We used to only use emails for work assignment and tracking for all faculty and student IT problems. This was meant to replace that entirely.
  • After proper training on setting up the views and servers, Cherwell did a good job separating various department ownership of tickets. Our work views weren't cluttered with irrelevant information.
  • There is a lot of information that can be embedded into tickets. Such as sub-task assignments that could contain almost the same information as a ticket itself. Lot of customization options.
  • Custom personal dashboards were nice, once I figured out how to do it. Not everyone wants to see things the same way as other people, and being able to move touch points where you want is always a plus.
  • While I understand that a lot of customization can be up to an organization, the platform was always a huge pain when going beyond the installed client. The web client and mobile app were very problematic and clunky, locked up frequently.
  • My university was 50% Windows/50% Apple, and there's no Apple client.
  • The built in remote control capabilities on tickets for client machines didn't play well with our active directory. We always just used a different program.
  • Error handling could have been much better. Accidentally assigning ticket items to "non-existent" resources could crash the client. Such as if the resource was removed before a worker's view was refreshed.
  • Tickets can go into limbo very easily, and seemed to require more development than it should to protect us from doing that. This is because there's a lot of different ways to do the same thing. Too many touch points all over the place in the UI.
  • Too many ticket priority options. Clients could be assigned personal higher priorities through VIP status, tickets could be given their own priorities that conflict with client status, and SLA deadlines could assign other conflicting priorities. There were more but these were the most problematic if you're using Cherwell in a situation where you have limited developer time to nail down all the inconsistencies every day.
  • There was an arbitrary time tracking feature on tickets that attempted to gather data on how long certain resources took, but because the UI was very cumbersome this was more of a pain to do and was very inaccurate of the actual work it takes to do certain things.
  • 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.
I personally did not choose Cherwell, and I would choose a more open source solution, something multi-platform, or easier to get into wherever you are especially on a large college campus. Slack is inherently different, however it's easier to use everywhere and is easier for remote communication with workers. TaskRay from my limited experience is more for larger projects and not a bunch of small tickets.
Well suited if you have people dedicated to developing the views and back-end C# client, and if you work in a more silo type environment.

Cherwell Service Management Feature Ratings

Organize and prioritize service tickets
Expert directory
Service restoration
Self-service tools
Subscription-based notifications
Not Rated
ITSM collaboration and documentation
ITSM reports and dashboards
Configuration mangement
Asset management dashboard
Policy and contract enforcement
Change requests repository
Change calendar
Service-level management

Using Cherwell Service Management

IT management, computer product fulfillment, all ticketing services used by organization. It's also used to register conference/classrooms.
2 - There are a lot of custom views created, and highly customized dashboards for individuals or different departments/teams which all require basic C# skills to produce and interact with Cherwell's API. Usually the team dynamic has been a full-time Cherwell developer, and a rotating intern position. This has been sufficient for an entire University's needs.
  • IT service management
  • Conference/classroom reservation system
  • Product delivery management
  • Documentation of IT labor
  • When a new lab needed 50+ computers setup, it was nice the Cherwell could have subtasks for groups of them, because they take a lot of time, and making sure the labor is properly delegated would ordinarily be difficult to track.
  • Being able to remote control a client's desktop directly from the Cherwell dashboard was really great, once the custom feature was finished by the developers
  • More mobile utilization, instead of being tied to a desktop
  • Get computer diagnostic information directly in tickets
  • Time tracking built-in
  • Printer integration in labs
It's highly integrated into the organization, very unlikely to remove it at the current price point. Offers everything needed, and the skills needed to customize it with C# aren't demanding.