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Best Practices for Optimizing Your ServiceNow Environment in 2020

More than 5400 enterprises, including almost 75% of the Fortune 500, have adopted ServiceNow® to support workflow processes in areas such as IT, HR, customer support, problem tracking, and data security. If your company is one of them, you’ll certainly want to maximize the value of that investment. So, let’s take a look at some best practices that can help you fine tune your ServiceNow environment for maximum effectiveness.

1. Optimize Your Workflows

One great benefit of a ServiceNow environment is that it automates and systematizes the workflow processes that are the backbone of your company’s operations. That being the case, it’s natural when configuring your ServiceNow platform to simply reimplement workflow designs that your company has used for years. But if those processes are themselves less efficient and effective than they should be, those deficiencies should be corrected before they are embedded in your ServiceNow solution.

Be sure to reassess your legacy workflows for effectiveness, efficiency, and quality of user experience before transferring them into ServiceNow.

2. Evaluate Whether the Data You Import is Really Needed

Because ServiceNow is designed to provide a comprehensive single system of record for the entire organization, companies often aim at integrating all available data sources into the system. But there are at least two important reasons for resisting that temptation.

First, data that does not have a defined use can unnecessarily increase system overhead. Perhaps more importantly, if such data is not properly managed throughout its lifecycle, it can become outdated, embedding inconsistent or inaccurate information in your ServiceNow implementation.

3. Clean Up Your Configuration Management Database

The Configuration Management Database (CMDB) is critical to ServiceNow’s ability to function as a “single source of truth” for the organization. But as with any database, the CMDB is only as good as the data it houses. So, you should make it a priority to assess your CMDB to determine the accuracy, consistency, and completeness of its data, and make corrections as necessary.

Do You Have Blind Spots in Your ServiceNow Environment - watch

4. Use ServiceNow Functionality Whenever Possible

Whenever there’s overlap between capabilities available in ServiceNow and those provided by existing systems or new integrations, it’s best to centralize that functionality in ServiceNow. Why? 

First, such consolidation enhances ServiceNow’s ability to function as the single system of record for your organization. It also maximizes ServiceNow’s usefulness by allowing users to access all the functionality they need in one place, through a standardized “single pane of glass” user interface. And finally, it helps to minimize complexity and the potential for confusion.

5. Integrate Your Mainframe into ServiceNow

One of the most important capabilities of the ServiceNow platform is its IT Operations Management (ITOM) functionality. Through its built-in discovery processes, ServiceNow can find all identifiable computing resources (called Configuration Items, or CIs) wherever they are located throughout your IT infrastructure, and map the logical relationships between them. This information is regularly updated and stored in the CMDB, creating what is intended to be a comprehensive representation of the logical structure of your entire IT environment. 

But there is a significant gap in ServiceNow’s otherwise excellent ITOM capabilities: it cannot natively discover CIs from IBM mainframes and IBM i systems. For the large number of enterprises that rely on these systems for the bulk of their business-critical processing, this is a major limitation. And that’s why Syncsort created its Ironstream solution.

Syncsort Ironstream extends ServiceNow Discovery to IBM mainframe and IBM i systems, adding their CIs to the ServiceNow CMDB and automatically updating that information on a regular basis. With Ironstream the ServiceNow platform can now, for the first time, provide a truly comprehensive view of your company’s entire IT environment, whether it’s on premises, in the cloud, or a hybrid combination of the two. 

To learn more about Ironstream, please download our Ironstream for ServiceNow® Solution Sheet and watch our on-demand webcast.

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