In January, Information Technology switched to ServiceNow, an IT service management platform that is widely considered to be one of the best in the world. ServiceNow is currently used to support our incident management process (e.g., tickets) and service management (e.g., ordering, accounts, software). In the future, ServiceNow can support virtually all of the things we do including, problem, change, asset, configuration, and knowledge management. These various processes have specific definitions in the ITIL world, but suffice it to say that ServiceNow will be our “bread and butter” application for the foreseeable future.
Early indications of its utility from our employees and customers have been very positive. We are tracking issues and requests much more accurately in the new system. What is not seen by our customers is the efficiency the system has gained us. For example, before ServiceNow, when a customer needed a network drop, we had to make a ticket (in our old system), contact the centralized networking group to make a request, and then follow-up on that request by phone until the work was done. Since the networking group shares the same system we us, now the process is merely a matter of creating a new ticket in ServiceNow and assigning it to the networking group in the application. If we want to check on the status, we look up the ticket and read the notes. If we are not getting a response, we add a process note to ping the group – knock, knock! Conversely, when the university Service Desk receives a call in our swim lane, they enter the ticket and we get it. This has led to significant efficiency in communication and coordination, both internally and externally.
Another thing that most people don’t know is that we’ve had key staff involved from the initiation of the project. Anthony Schneider is a member of the steering committee. Ariane Bradford practically wrote the incident management process, and Cameron Baker has made significant contributions in the problem management arena. Their work demonstrates that we are out at the “tip of the spear” leading IT both at home and in the larger university community.
As new processes come on-board in ServiceNow, I’m sure we will have more to talk about. For now, the early indications are promising.