ServiceNow Boosts IT Automation, Operations Management

By Doug Barney

In dual announcements, this week ServiceNow put its imprint on the operations management and IT Service Automation spaces.

First up is ServiceNow Configuration Automation, an orchestration tool that works with the ServiceNow Configuration Management Database (CMDB) to manage and control all this CMDB data. “Administrators no longer need to think of the CMDB as a point-in-time historical record of hardware and software configurations. Instead, the process reverses, and the ServiceNow CMDB can become the driver of configuration changes to the data center infrastructure. This allows IT to improve quality of service, ensure compliance and define a single version of truth that controls, instead of just records, changes,” the company said.

“Accurate configuration information about infrastructure—physical, virtual and cloud-based—ensures confident IT service delivery. It is also crucial for preventing outages and degradation in the quality of service provided to the business.” ServiceNow hopes to replace multiple discrete tools with an integrated solution, a notion backed by one analyst briefed on the plan. “Visibility, insight and automation go hand-in-hand, although far too often these requirements are dealt with separately, by niche solutions,” said Dennis Drogseth, vice president, Enterprise Management Associates (EMA). “ServiceNow’s introduction of Configuration Automation as informed by its CMDB demonstrates a clear recognition of this fact—and sets the stage for a powerful expansion of ServiceNow’s native strengths. ServiceNow is also unique in its capabilities for natively combining insights into business service interdependencies, configuration changes, and user-defined automation through its unified architecture and its strong commitment to functional versatility without sacrificing administrative ease.”

Automation Time

Also this week the company pushed deeper into Service Automation with a set of integrated applications to manage and automate IT services. “The new applications in the IT Service Automation Suite include ServiceNow Vendor Performance Management and ServiceNow Resource Management. In addition, ServiceNow Password Reset is available as an optional ServiceNow orchestration application. By sharing workflow and data, it is possible to create a single system of record, giving ServiceNow users unique insight to the relationships that exist between systems and processes in their environments. IT can then make more informed decisions that provide faster time-to-value, lower costs and better service to the business,” the company said.

One customer is using ServiceNow to track its IT infrastructure.  “With ServiceNow we gain a consistent way to understand and evaluate our vendors with a single, comprehensive view. It’s something that is only possible by having a single system of record,” said Paul Hardy, director of ITSM at Informa plc. “We have a complex business and technology environment with hundreds of vendors, so it is important to manage them continually and carefully.”

Servicing Partners

For the channel, the vendor offers its PartnerNow program which is designed to make it financially easy to get new businesses going. “Our Channel program requires no annual fees; you simply need to meet the minimum qualifications of the program and tier. Our Technology program has cost effective and automated tools simplifying the partnership with ServiceNow,” the company said.

Edited by Cassandra Tucker

MSPToday Editor at Large

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