Overview On ServiceNow
Many organizations are adopting cloud-based applications to resolve their IT-based challenges, ServiceNow is one among the applications having greater flexibility in terms of functionality, customization and reliability. It is basically an Information Technology Service Management (ITSM) tool, which can provide all types of services used in the Organization including human resources, facilities and project management and so on. It is a Platform as a Service (PaaS).
Service providers can manage all the services not only within the enterprise but also outside the enterprise using various modules available in the tools.
These are used to resolve the challenges faced by various departments of an organization. There are many pre-built services available in the tool. In addition, it offers multiple third-party application integrations which help in extending the capabilities of the platform to increase its functionalities and use the platform more resourcefully. ServiceNow provides an app store of tool offerings from third parties such as Slack and Microsoft Teams.
The tool has been developing with addition of new modules which are available in the form of plugins for every new release of its version. It has a multi-tenant architecture which means supporting multiple servers with a single instance. ServiceNow is built on Information Technology Infrastructure Library (ITIL).
Features of ServiceNow:
- Developers with less coding knowledge can also easily work with this tool even for deploying and integrating applications.
- Users can get information of their issue from knowledge base articles, so that they can resolve on their own which is called self-help in ServiceNow.
- For normal and repetitive issues users can chat with a bot. If they are unsatisfied with the same they can reach to live agent available to increase the efficiency of work.
- We can also create service portal pages based on the ServiceNow platform with widgets as per client requirement.
- ServiceNow is a new technology with a variety of benefits like automating all IT-based operations to reduce the work load of departments, which in turn improves the overall efficiency of an organization.
- It offers workflow-based application development and enables to create custom workflows.
- This single system brings together IT strategy, design, transition and operation on a simple cloud platform and doesn’t requires any other infrastructure.
- We can export and import large amount of data into/from ServiceNow in the form of CSV, Excel, XML, PDF, JSON.
- It offers easy customizations, helping to address client requirements.
- ServiceNow instance can be accessed anywhere, as it doesn’t require any additional software to be installed on the system.
- It takes less time upgrading to its new versions and requires less amount of money to setup and run in an organization.
Minimum requirements to work with ServiceNow:
An incident is raised when a service is not working properly or when it is in abnormal condition, so that the intended team (Service-desk/Support-team) will work on it to restore to normal conditions.
Example: Excel-sheet is not working properly.
The user who raised an issue can track it, add comments and ask for updates on the ticket until it is resolved. Team will work on the issue based on priority in-turn based on impact and urgency.
If there is any downtime of a server, then that will be an issue for all the users working on the that particular server, so the team will raise an incident instead of all the users which is called a Major incident, looping all the users working on that server.
If there are any related incidents reported frequently about an issue, a problem ticket is raised. When a problem ticket is raised, it means the team will find the root cause of the error resulting in stoppage of these type of errors in the future. Problem management aims at removing the problems permanently from IT infrastructure.
Example:Email server is down.
It is raised when there is new alteration (addition/modification/deletion) in the product without any disturbances in the IT services.
Example: Upgrading a software.
There are three types of predefined changes in ServiceNow – Standard, Emergency and Normal.
- Standard Change: Common and specified processes which are already authorized i.e., no need to wait for Change Advisory Board (CAB) approvals, will come under standard changes.
- Emergency Change: It is a high priority issue which directly goes to CAB for authorization as it should be implemented expeditiously.
- Normal Change: The changes which are not standard or emergency change will come under normal change. This process involves all the processes like approvals, implementations, reviews and then ends with closing state.
Configuration Management Database (CMDB):
It is the central location where one can find data on all the assets and business services of an organization such as computers, network, software and so on in the form of tables.
It contains articles with information on the most common issues, which the users can resolve by themselves. These will be shown to users when they raise a ticket with similar issues or they can go through the knowledge base. If the article helps them, there is no need to rise a ticket, enabling the support team to work on other high priority issues. There are different categories of articles in knowledge management.
It involves all the aspects of IT assets of an organization. Asset Management includes all the assets as well as CIs (Configuration Items). CIs include the services available in an organization and assets include the financial tracking of the properties of an organization. This module displays widgets showing CIs and its types, computers etc. It also shows all the pending assets.
This is a chat tool that helps users to chat with individual user or with groups for sharing files and updating a record. We can add or remove members in the groups. Records can be updated directly from these conversations under work notes and comments.
It is a module where we can get all the services/products that are available in an organization. It acts like Self Service for the employees so that they can request the available items according to their need, which creates a Service Catalog task.
It is step-by-step flow to automate the work process in ServiceNow. There are some predefined workflows and it also enables us to create new workflows as per our requirement. Workflow contains activities like generating new records, notifications, approvals etc. It allows us to add conditions and scripts that make developers to present user-friendly process.
This involves creation and distribution of reports that show the current status of data in our instance (for example, number of open incidents or number of resolved incidents) in the form of pie-charts, bar-graphs, lists or calendar-based views. By default, reporting option is available for all the tables.
We can also show reports as homepages to know our team performance. There are also some predefined reports available in ServiceNow.
HR Service Delivery:
This provides all the HR services by automating them and makes them easily available to all the employees of an organization. It deals with all the documentation, inquiries, requests and on-boarding of an employee. It acts as a single platform consisting of all the services required for the employees which in-turn improves overall efficiency of the firm.
Example: Payrolls, benefits, hiring, policies and so on.
This helps users in completing the common tasks without waiting for help from the support team by an automated agent and gets the work done rapidly, improving customer service and reducing the work load. Customers can check the status of their tickets/cases and update their comments, if the customers are unhappy with the virtual agent they can request for a live agent, so they are redirected to the available agents or will be added to the queue of the agents list.
Predefined conversational topics are available, adding new topics using virtual agent designer as per our requirements is also possible.
Agent Intelligence helps in predicting values of fields and auto-populating them while creating a record based on short description, category and so on. This automates workflows and predicts outcomes using machine-learning algorithms. According to the training of models, work will be routed based on the past related records which helps in reduction of resolution time. We can use predefined solutions or create new solutions for incident and customer service management. These solutions will be available only once the agent intelligence plugin is activated.
ServiceNow is a tool to fulfil and process all the needs of an organization as it is very simple, flexible and compatible for all customizations. This tool helps in reducing operating costs and improving the efficiency of work. Main upside of ServiceNow is process automation for business requirements.
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