ServiceNow Istanbul: The 10 features we’re most excited about

Long awaited, ServiceNow released the latest installment “Istanbul” on January 10, 2017. This release is as exciting as its namesake city, Istanbul. Istanbul, Turkey has a deep history of integrating multiple cultures to build an innovative society much in the way ServiceNow innovates by seeking out multiple frameworks to weave a holistic platform for business and IT. We have captured our top ten new or enhanced features to motivate your innovative spirit.

1.   Automated Testing Framework

This new functionality has been highly requested by ServiceNow customers. The Automated Testing Framework (ATF) allows customers to accelerate applications into production and eliminate risks with automated validation tests for new applications and functionality. Using ATF to create tests that mimic user actions with no scripting such as: opening a form, set and validate field values or submitting a form. Additionally, use server-side scripting to perform complex operations using JavaScript using the Jasmine test framework.

ATF provides several OOTB testing steps, however the framework provides for custom test steps. These custom steps can take input variables and return output variables that you define. There is full automated tracking of automated testing to remove test data eliminating the need to roll back changes. The framework provides batch, hierarchical and nested suites testing. ATF will help move your new versions of ServiceNow and scoped applications as they are able to create, test and move in a single tool.

2.   Change Advisory Board (CAB) Workbench

Simplified scheduling and planning to automate Change Advisory Board (CAB) meetings. The CAB Workbench will assist the CAB Manager to keep track of the agendas and attendees for the CAB meeting and what has been approved. In the past CAB managers would need another calendaring tool to organize meetings; now they can see all the meetings, agendas, stakeholders and approvers within a single UI.

It helps to automatically notify participants when they are needed in the meeting without having stakeholders attending a longer meeting unnecessarily. Additionally, filter criteria can be created to help determine when a requestor needs to be notified. These features will greatly improve efficiency for the CAB manager while saving valuable resource time.

3.   Benchmarks

Benchmarks on Key ITSM Performance Indicators for Continuous Service Improvement allows customers to see how they stack up with other like size companies or in their industry. This saves the customer time and money by leveraging the ServiceNow cloud to securely share insights into performance around ITSM.

When a company does research for a request for purchase the data gathered is a point in time whereas with ServiceNow benchmarking all the metrics are harnessed in real-time. ServiceNow maintains data integrity and security to its customers instances which have opted into sharing their data.

4.   Application Portfolio Management (APM)

This application will help the CIO and IT leadership team to evaluate applications against each other using standard metrics which are identified by the company. The ability to collect identified metrics across the platform will provide IT with the information to create and track strategic goals.

Additionally, leveraging the data gathered to holistically coordinate with other features within ServiceNow to automatically generate an Idea if an application falls below criteria standards to research the viability of the application for future use. Coupled with advanced dash boarding and notification on critical application status, IT will have the advanced knowledge to remediate. These new features will give IT the power to efficiently track its portfolio and report stakeholders quickly.

5.   Human Resource Service Management (HRSM)

HR departments handle sensitive data and want autonomy to administer their application outside IT. With Istanbul, they created a scoped application which provides this separation of data of users from the main platform and also allows for delegated administration between the Admin and HR Admin. IT System Administrators [admin] can still impersonate ServiceNow users, however, when impersonating a user with a scoped HR role, the admin must have the sn_hr_core.admin role to modify features for HR cases, profile information and change the password for an HR role.

Additionally, the new Lifecycle Event Module allows HR to package workflows as an event. Events may have many workflows in which event seamlessly connects these workflows. Customers do not have to immediately migrate to the scoped application. There is no end of date for the existing application, however all future enhancements will only occur in the scoped application.

6.   Customer Relationship Management (CRM)

The updated data model and Customer Service Portal support unique Business-to-Consumer (B2C) business needs. B2C features allow anonymous chat and registration which many B2C companies require daily to communicate with their customers. Naturally a Consumer Service Portal is supported where the consumers can search for information, start a chat, or register for continued service. After a consumer becomes a registered user they gain the ability to edit their profile, register new products, contact consumer support, create cases and accept or reject proposed case solutions.

Additionally, CRM module increased automation with Intelligence Case Assignment. The features allow a company to set rules to dictate case assignment and speed resolution. This is accomplished by configuring criteria to evaluate the agents in a selected group to provide an overall ranking.

7.   ServiceNow Express

ServiceNow Express is focused to the small and mid-size businesses. These customers are looking for products which are easy, plug and play, with little additionally maintenance. Express provides integrations certified by ServiceNow and developed/supported by ServiceNow Technology Partners. One-click installations means enhancements are quick and easy while updates are completed with HI credentials.

Non-production Instances are now available in Istanbul for ServiceNow Express customers. Non-production Instances assure release and configuration changes are operable before moving to production. Furthermore, Express customers can rest assured the OOTB configurations are aligned with ITIL best practices which will expedite implementations.

8.   IT Operations Management (ITOM)

The updates to IT Operations Management module allows the customer to get ahead of service outages. Dashboard unification views key performance indicators of cloud resources across multiple providers coupled the ITOM Metric Management to learn from historical metric data, and builds standard statistical models to project expected metric values to detect statistical outliers and to calculate anomaly scores. Service Analytics correlates alerts for CIs based on the CI’s relationships in the CMDB. All this in a single dashboard, efficiency and intelligence at your fingertips.

9.   Security Operations

The new configuration dashboard enables integrations in the product and lets customers see what is enabled and what is available. Automated threat intel lookups eliminate manual processes while enriching incidents for quicker remediation. Embedded Orchestration Packs allow security teams to spend less time on basic tasks and more time hunting threats. The packs have workflow which are included when you activate a plugin from the configuration dashboard. There are many more enhancements to Security Operations to efficiently and effetely detect threats such as, field mapping, workflow triggers, enrichment data mapping, escalations, filter groups, email parsing and duplicate rules function.

10.   Governance, Risk, & Compliance (GRC)

A new risk scenarios module is integrated with the platform to detect risk and compliance events to remediate the response. OOTB integration with Performance Analytics expands continuous monitoring of risk indicators beyond security while detecting failing critical controls in between assessments. Advanced GRC dependency modeling and GRC Assessment Designer allow a company to create dynamic assessments and accelerating comprehensive business impact analysis. Eliminating manual reconciliation of evidence data leaves time to understand risk dependencies across profiles (asset/services/processes).

Now that you are ready to continue innovating, we will be happy to assist you. Contact us for assistance in either upgrading to Istanbul or implementing some of the features introduced.  We are excited to support your ServiceNow endeavors to gain a maximum value to your company and stakeholders.

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