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IT Workflow: Q&A with Pablo Stern


Building agility into IT workflows
 

Across the enterprise, no team feels the need for speed more than IT.  To create the organizational agility that is essential for success, companies today are increasingly turning to digital platforms that replace inefficient processes with digital workflows and bring data to more teams, faster. Pablo Stern, Senior Vice President of IT Workflow Products, explains how IT organizations are building agility using ServiceNow.

How is ServiceNow’s value proposition for IT workflows unique?

If you look at the competitive landscape, you can see that digital companies are going to be in the best position to accelerate business growth. IT is driving these digital transformation initiatives on behalf of the business.

I see ServiceNow at the heart of this transformation. Digital workflows are our core competency—they are what drives a company’s digital transformation. For the digital transformation to happen, a business needs connective tissue, meaning that all of the different pieces of the business—the work and the data—need to be connected. This is what ServiceNow’s digital workflows do.
 

How does the Now Platform deliver great IT experiences?

Consider what the iPhone has done for your home life. What makes it so unique is that it’s one platform with a very broad ecosystem of apps that brings your home life together—friends, financials, purchases and more. That’s what we do for the enterprise. We bring together work across your business, from IT to HR, finance, and beyond. We provide one platform to help you find coworkers, get budget approvals, or order that new laptop. We’re removing the friction in your day-to-day work life.

To deliver great experiences, you have to start with our customers. We want them to work where they want, how they want, when they want. The Now Platform enables just that, whether you’re at your desk or on the go.

These experiences stem from the workflows that span IT. For operations, we solve the needle in a haystack problem, where people are trying to find the “needles” at the root of their operational issues. For example, we identify the most probable root cause when an outage occurs, and we also help security teams prioritize the systems that need remediation. This is the power of AIOps that the industry is buzzing about: we take the data, apply AI to it, and deliver insights. But we don’t stop there. We use these insights to drive actions: helping customers become more proactive and enabling them to get ahead of problems before they impact their customers.

In true DevOps fashion, we’re also uniting developers and operations to help them release more quickly without an increased risk of destabilizing their services. And we make sure that agile teams are aligned to the priorities of the business, minimizing wasted time.

For agents, we remove the mundane. We automate repetitive tasks, allowing people to focus on higher value, more interesting work. Take something as simple as password resets, a mundane and repetitive task for IT. By applying ServiceNow and automation to this problem, we can reduce call volume to IT by 30%. That means IT can focus more of its time on higher-value problems.

For all the use cases, we provide IT with a consumerized experience on the desktop or mobile phone. Our connective tissue unites IT workflows and data into one experience so people can work how they want, where they want, when they want. By focusing on the IT experience, we enable our customers to deliver a world-class employee experience.
 

ServiceNow is part of a broader ecosystem of IT infrastructure platforms and tools. How do we fit into that ecosystem?

Our value in the IT ecosystem is using digital workflows to help businesses move as quickly as possible. Think of the lifecycle of technology, from ideating to building and delivering technology to customers. Developers love using their tool of choice, like Git or Jenkins, along that journey. With our upcoming DevOps release, we connect the entire development journey end-to-end. We also provide visibility into products and investments, and enable the teams building those products to work in an agile fashion.

In the operations world, ops teams work with a broad set of monitoring solutions to assess the health of their clouds. We integrate with that ecosystem to provide operations with a unified view.

In today’s security environment, cybersecurity teams leverage a variety of security solutions. Those ­teams are increasingly interconnected with the operations teams driving patching and remediation. We help security analysts prioritize vulnerabilities and incidents from their ecosystem and then collaborate with ops to remediate vulnerabilities, solve issues, and improve the health of the production environment.
 

A big part of the digital transformation journey is moving to the cloud. How is ServiceNow helping that transition?

We consider it our responsibility to support our customer’s evolving landscape as they transition to the cloud. With ServiceNow, customers can see whether their services are running on-premise, in a private cloud, or in the public cloud. ServiceNow traverses the customer’s cloud, covering use cases  from incident management to service health and  vulnerability remediation. That’s how we enable smooth cloud transitions.

In some cases we’re adding support for cloud-specific capabilities. As an example, last year we acquired VendorHawk, a SaaS license management platform. We’ll be releasing this technology later in the year as part of our Software Asset Management (SAM) product, extending support to manage cost and license usage for popular SaaS applications. And later this year we’ll release Cloud Insights, a solution that enables cloud operations teams to understand and optimize cost and resource utilization in public clouds.
 

Everyone in our industry talks about digital transformation. What’s a concrete example of a customer that has used ServiceNow to transform IT workflows?

Cox Automotive provides products and services for the automotive industry. The business has grown quickly by acquiring many industry-leading automotive brands, including Kelly Blue Book, AutoTrader and Manheim. Cox now employs 25,000 people in more than 200 locations across the globe.

When AutoTrader Group and Manheim Auctions merged to become Cox Automotive, they immediately saw the power of AutoTrader’s ServiceNow ITSM platform. Cox rapidly expanded ServiceNow’s service desk capabilities across the other major brands. They also started delivering other digital solutions using the Now Platform.

Today, Cox leverages the Now Platform to streamline the software release process as they look to accelerate technology.  They view ServiceNow as a strategic platform that helps power many digital activities and applications.

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