Meet the future of customer service
Managing a large customer service operation is a complex undertaking
for any company. It’s even more challenging when that effort requires
juggling multiple CRM platforms. Most platforms can’t share
information effectively, making it that much harder for customer
service agents to provide great experiences.
We asked Farrell Hough, Senior Vice president of Customer Workflow
Products, to explain how the Now platform manages that complexity—and
helps agents use fewer resources to provide better and faster customer experiences.
There have been enterprise CRM solutions on the market for
20 years now. What’s different about ServiceNow?
The CRM market is made up of four segments: sales, commerce,
marketing and service. ServiceNow sits squarely in the service
component, the fastest growing component of CRM overall. But 60% of
that market is still filled with homegrown solutions. Another 20% are
legacy solutions, and the remainder come from our peers in the marketplace.
The large proportion of homegrown solutions means there's a lot of
customer pain to solve and a lot of room for ServiceNow customer
service management to address that pain.
In the service space, most CRM vendors are really only able to
provide case-logging capabilities. I call that reaction management. By
contrast, we bring together core capabilities like omnichannel and
case management, combined with operational capabilities like service
management and service operations.
This creates an end-to-end experience that gets to root causes and
solves customer problems.
How would you describe ServiceNow’s vision for customer
We tie in the operational excellence of the rest of the
organization. We provide end-to-end, proactive self-service,
connecting the customer service agent with the back-end operations
team or the engineering team that built the product.
Those teams can help the agent identify the issue and get to the
root cause so we can ultimately fix the issue. Customers today have an
advantage using Service Now CSM in that they can fix issues once and
How does the Now Platform help deliver great customer experiences?
The Now Platform is unique because users get a platform with a
single data model rather than having to integrate myriad data models
from different platforms into their customer service workflow. That
means they can take full advantage of our core capabilities: machine
learning, native mobile experiences, a service catalog that drives
self-service requests, a native knowledge base, and the capability to
create a self-service portal.
I’ll add that the Now Platform has long been known in the industry
for bringing operational excellence to the IT organizations of
worldwide enterprises. Customers get to leverage investments they’ve
already made for additional use cases, like customer service. So, the
customer is not adding another platform or point solution. Instead,
this is about extending their investment to create new value through
ServiceNow is part of a broader ecosystem of IT
infrastructure platforms and tools. How do we fit into that ecosystem?
We tend to be one of the four or five major platforms that
enterprises are investing in to support the entire organization. These
platforms are built to grow and evolve alongside the enterprise.
We can also add in third-party capabilities or integrate different
data sources that allow customers to meet the unique requirements of
their business. Our New York release has a virtual data source
capability that will allow customer service agents to access external
information, such as account records, that aren't native in other
customer service management tools.
Additionally, the integration hub in our core platform makes it easy
to extend integrations to other third parties, building workflows
around them with our Flow Designer application. Those platform
capabilities allow us to reach out into the ecosystem and build
broader solutions that work well for any of the enterprises that we support.
Everyone in our industry talks about digital transformation.
What’s a concrete example of a customer that has used ServiceNow to
transform customer workflows?
My favorite example is Nice Software, a leading analytics software
company based in Israel. Nice is part of our ecosystem and they have
the same vision that we do for improving customer experiences, but
they do it with telephony.
Nice was handling about 70,000 customer cases a year, with 1,000
cases coming in every month that needed individual attention. They
weren’t able to assign cases based on agent skills. As a result, cases
would often get assigned to the wrong people.
When the case finally reached an engineer with the proper skills,
that engineer often hadn’t encountered the issue before and lacked
access to a knowledge base to help with resolution. Consequently, it
took an average of 24 days to resolve a case.
Implementing ServiceNow CSM allowed Nice to automate and accelerate
case management. Within a week of implementing Service Now CSM, Nice
reduced the volume of assignments by using skills-based routing. Now,
required skills are identified during case creation. ServiceNow
automatically routes cases to people with the right skills and
availability. By combining intuitive processes and a more engaging
user interface, NICE reduced back-end case volume by 72%, saving
$450,000 a year. That’s the power of the Now Platform.