ServiceNow Focused on All Users

Logo for ServiceNow's Knowledge18 conferenceIn an earlier blog, I wrote about a couple of takeaways regarding improvements to the ServiceNow platform from our trip to Knowledge18, Those weren’t the only key takeaways from ServiceNow’s annual conference. There was a lot of focus on improving the user experience for both the producers and consumers of ServiceNow’s features and value. Having seen many projects succeed or fail based not upon features but upon user experience, this was exciting to see.

Laser-Focused on User Experience

A clear area of continued focus and investment for ServiceNow on display at the conference was in the UI/UX domain.  The user experience arena has traditionally been one in which customers have looked to enhance out-of-the-box capabilities of the platform to create a more tailored and seamless experience.  Recognizing this customer demand, ServiceNow has put UI/UX in its cross-hairs for the coming releases.

The upcoming London release features the component, Agent Workspace. Agent Workspace improves the fulfiller experience through a more streamlined and integrated interface.  The typical ‘alt-tab tango’ and screen sprawl that can result from working multiple items now gives way to a unified console that puts meaningful action at the fingertips of the user.

A rich conversation interface called Virtual Agent that can initiate any ServiceNow action from any chat interface. Virtual Agent represents another advancement in self-service options that will evolve the ways in which users interact with the platform.  The chat-agnostic approach was a smart one. It will certainly pay dividends for the many organizations looking to enhance their use of these collaboration tools.

Last but not least, the Madrid release will offer a robust, fully native mobile experience on iOS and Android platforms.  This will allow users to capitalize on those moments of action or “micro-moments” that represent those opportunities to get work done on their mobile devices through “one thumb” interactions.  Combined with built-in mobile capabilities like GPS/mapping and camera functionality can provide significant improvements in performance, security and of course, user experience.

It was good to see ServiceNow’s bullish position on providing a truly rewarding and immersive user experience.  We can’t overstate the importance of this aspect of an enterprise platform, as it is so frequently the difference between success and failure.

Enabling the DevOps/Agile Movement

In what should probably be considered the ‘better late than never’ category, ServiceNow introduced its Enterprise DevOps solution. This solution is slated to come out in the Madrid release.  The DevOps cycle of plan, develop, build, test, deploy, and operate typically involves a wide range of tools. Eclipse, GitHub, Jenkins, Puppet, Chef, and AppDynamics, to name a few.  This fragmented DevOps toolchain can make it difficult to manage this process effectively and understand where initiatives are in their respective lifecycles.

ServiceNow’s upcoming offering is aimed at unifying this process. Essentially, becoming the glue that holds this process together. The platform will provide both the visibility desired and control required to effectively achieve DevOps success at enterprise scale.

In addition, ServiceNow is incorporating the Scaled Agile Framework (SAFe) 4.5 with “essential SAFe” slated for the London release and “portfolio SAFe” targeted for the Madrid release.  These enhancements, complete with weighted shortest job first (WSJF) auto calculations, Increment and Big Room planning features, and a unified backlog management approach, significantly bolster the agile capabilities of the platform and ServiceNow’s relevance in the DevOps space.

Making Things Easy

Strong user experience is becoming more and more of a competitive edge for software. It doesn’t matter what a system can do if people are either unwilling or unable to utilize it. Additionally, making it easier for solution developers to implement solutions at a more continuous cadence is valuable. The combination makes it easier for our clients to remain agile through rapid iteration with more intuitive interfaces.

TeraThink shares ServiceNow’s commitment to customer success. We are excited to take what we’ve learned to further ensure our clients’ ServiceNow journey is a successful one.

Didn’t get a chance to attend Knowledge18? Want to learn more or want to chat more about things you did learn while at the conference? Reach out to us. We’d love to hear about your experience and share with you what we learned!