Eureka! ServiceNow is SaaS for the MaaSes.
Lee Cullom profile photo
Updated September 29, 2014

Eureka! ServiceNow is SaaS for the MaaSes.

Score 8 out of 10
Vetted Review
Verified User
Review Source

Software Version

Dublin

Modules Used

  • Incident Management
  • Problem Management
  • Change Management
  • Request Management (Self-Service, ESS & Non)
  • Request Fulfillment (Tasks)
  • Service Level Agreements
  • Configuration Management (pre-Neebula Acquisition)
  • Release Management
  • Knowledge Management
  • Reporting
  • ServiceNow Performance Analytics (Formerly Mirror42)

Overall Satisfaction with ServiceNow

For an additional fee, detailed review can be found in State of the ITSM Market at: http://www.itsmuniversity.net

Northcraft Analytics is a provider of Business Intelligence applications for Enterprise IT. As such, we have created a pre-defined set of 2,000 measures and Key Performance Indicators for 11 ITIL process areas (as of August, 2014). ServiceNow (NOW) is currently #2 in market share in the IT Service Management market (estimated at @ 1.7 Billion WW in 2014). NOW is our 2nd most popular BI application as well as the fastest growing in our portfolio of products (this is directly correlated with NOW's growth in the ITSM market). In the development of our offering for NOW (which is on-going) we have learned a great deal about the product's capabilities. In addition, when offering support for our product to our customers we learn their needs with respect to IT Performance management across the commonly deployed NOW modules. In our opinion the most common problems addressed are:- Request Fulfillment Automation to increase productivity within medium to large enterprise IT departments.- Self-Service Shopping for Employees to reduce call volume and simplify access to company services- Business Service Management to enhance communication between IT, lines of business & executive management

  • Request Management & Fulfillment - ServiceNow has the strongest offering outside of "best of breed" players, such as Kinetic Data.
  • Knowledge Management that is tightly integrated to the Incident Management function with powerful text search built in.
  • Orchestration, specifically password reset automation for Active Directory
  • PaaS (Platform as a Service) - ServiceNow is designed for customization and new application creation. Most importantly, JavaScript is leveraged, which is an established standard language.
  • Upgradability - While NOW is customizable, it can become more difficult to upgrade if solid implementation expertise is missing at critical moments.
  • Pricing - ServiceNow's pricing model has become less transparent more expensive (due to lower discounting) and more complex post-IPO. This is a reflection of the pride NOW feels in the product... which is somewhat justified by revenue growth which outstrips that of their competitors.
  • Depth in Functionality - This is both a positive and a negative. Depth in functionality often increases the complexity of the application and decreases the usability. ServiceNow doesn't have the depth of an HP Service Manager of BMC Remedy IT Service Management, but this can be an advantage as well.
  • Lack of Native Multi-Tenancy - This can hamper ServiceNow deployments for Managed Service Providers.
  • Reduced Average Handling Time for Incidents
  • Increased % of Incidents & Requests from Self-Service
  • Lower average change duration with orchestration
  • Higher recurring operational expenditures in comparison to traditional perpetual license model
  • Lower storage costs due to SaaS (does this offset subscription costs?)
  • Lower systems administration costs (does this offset subscription costs?)
  • Equal or higher application administration costs (People are still the most important factor in an implementation)
  • Lower database administration costs (does this offset subscription costs?)
  • Equal or higher upgrade costs
  • SaaS Vendor lock-in Potential
  • Higher % of Incidents resolved at the front-line with password reset automation via orchestration
The question for an enterprise IT department today is... do I choose:- BMC Remedy ITSM - ServiceNow - BMC RemedyforceYour unique needs, implementation partner options and organizational DNA will drive the decision.
Northcraft Analytics doesn't have a choice, we support the top 5 products in the market based on share.
Well-suited:
  • Usability - Enterprise IT looking to establish a strong and simple front-end for automation of repeatable requests.
  • Simplicity - Small-Medium size enterprises who wish for a quick deployment of a user-friendly ITSM application.
  • Performance - Companies who are looking for an ITSM solution with strong, mature SaaS operations.
  • Flexibility/Agility - Companies that are interested in a customizable solution that fits their unique needs.
  • Breadth - Companies that are truly looking to establish a common platform (and database) for the most common ITSM/ESM needs.
Key Questions to ask:
  • How much do you charge for approvers?
  • Under what circumstances do you charge for employees accessing the system?
  • When would a customer use the out of the box mobile interface vs. purchasing a 3rd party add-on such as Mobile Reach? Why?
  • Under what circumstances would I need to consider purchasing ServiceNow business edition? Can you please tell us how to avoid customizing an out of the box script include up-front? So that we can avoid upgrade issues down the road?
  • Can you please show us how to create a change approval process that doesn't leverage one of the out of the box templates?
  • How often must we upgrade the application?
  • Which CMDB requirements would make Blazent or BDNA a necessary add-on purchase?
  • Use cases - Please, please, please come up with a detailed list of use cases.
Keep in mind:
  • Sometimes a vendor can win because they have the best demonstration. Consider using an independent 3rd party for demonstrations.
  • Vendors are typically not professional services companies, they are product companies. If possible, get multiple statements of work from different consulting organizations.

Evaluating ServiceNow and Competitors

Yes - BMC Remedy ITSM 7.0.3. This was a vendor selection engagement in which I was subcontracted, so the customer will remain anonymous, but I was the lead reviewer on the project. The customer had contracted with a major managed service provider who was using BMC Remedy to manage L1 support for a multi-national organization with over 100,000 employees. The quality of support was lacking, SLAs were frequently missed and usability, the contract was expensive and the usability of Remedy was particularly poor in that version.
  • Product Features
  • Product Usability
  • Product Reputation
  • Vendor Reputation
  • Analyst Reports
  • Third-party Reviews
The single most important factor was usability. Price didn't play as much of a factor in our decision as much as it normally would due to the astronomical annual contract value in place with our managed service provider (who also provided L1 support). We nearly selected BMC Remedy due to our CMDB requirements, but simplified request management and Incident Management won out.
The organization was very pleased with the evaluation and selection process due to the engagement of ITSM University. ITSM University was chosen over Gartner Group due to the deep implementation knowledge and breadth of ITSM platform knowledge.

ServiceNow Support

The ServiceNow team is U.S. based, highly responsive, friendly and intelligent. Technical support is one of the strongest differentiators of this company.
ProsCons
Quick Resolution
Good followup
Knowledgeable team
Problems get solved
Kept well informed
No escalation required
Support understands my problem
Support cares about my success
Quick Initial Response
Difficult to get immediate help
Yes, at a large health care customer, we had an issue with (what appeared to be) the 32-bit vs. 64 bit ServiceNow ODBC driver that ended up being a Windows Systems Administration issue. While the team couldn't resolve the issue, they stayed involved and offered up helpful research that certainly went above and beyond, because the problem wasn't related to the ServiceNow product. The fact that they stayed with us and cared about the resolution was the important part.