IT departments are almost always the first beneficiary of ServiceNow, but there’s no reason they should be the last. Once you have successfully transformed your organization’s IT Service Management (ITSM) capabilities with ServiceNow, it’s important to dream big and build on this foundation of success. Your goal should be to use ServiceNow to spark digital transformation across your organization. Rather than take a silo, department-by-department approach to digital transformation, you can set in motion a series of actions with ServiceNow that will keep every department moving in lockstep toward your digital transformation goals.
By IDC's estimates, businesses will spend $1.1 trillion in 2018 on digital transformation technology and services, an increase of 16.8 percent over the $958 billion spent in 2017.
As every transformative IT leader recognizes, ServiceNow is so much more than just an ITSM platform. This intuitive, all-encompassing business ecosystem connects, streamlines, and automates enterprise services across your organization—from sales to HR to cybersecurity—creating a single system of record for achieving new efficiencies and profitability. The ServiceNow platform alone, however, cannot magically unlock the digital transformation you desire. Just as you facilitate and plan every aspect of your ITSM wins with ServiceNow, so too must you create the proper environment to support enterprise-wide digital transformation. Fortunately, everything you’ve already learned from rolling out ITSM is fully applicable to propel your future ServiceNow wins.
Once you’ve achieved an initial ITSM win with ServiceNow, here are the key next steps you should be taking to foster enterprise-wide digital transformation:
- Share your implementation vision and roadmap far and wide: One of the biggest mistakes that organizations make on their journey to digital transformation is to not communicate their plans to stakeholders and end users. Although it takes time to properly articulate your three- to five-year vision and accompanying implementation roadmap, you need to get as many service units and individuals as possible to buy into and rally around your plans. These folks are the backbone of your strategy for keeping every service unit moving in lockstep toward a unified vision of digital transformation.
- Evangelize the benefits of change: People are instinctively resistant to change, especially when they don’t see a link between global changes and how they are individually impacted. That’s why it’s up to you to explain to your stakeholders why change is good for all of them. You want to relate your big-picture digital transformation vision to specific, tangible aspects of their jobs that are going to be streamlined, automated and made more efficient and profitable with ServiceNow. As you educate others on the benefits of change, some of them will become evangelists who will amplify your messages to an even wider audience, creating more momentum for change. And, don’t forget to recognize these evangelists for helping the organization move the needle of digital transformation.
- Prevent departments from veering off in their own direction: When some individuals learn about digital transformation, they get so excited that they immediately hit the ground running. During this sprint to the perceived finish line (note: digital transformation has no end), they tend to develop workflows and capabilities for ServiceNow that reflect their own wants and needs—without giving much thought to whether these plans are in line with the organization’s long-term, strategic business objectives. It’s your job to proactively guard against these tendencies. In fact, you should require every department to clearly articulate the link between departmental ServiceNow plans and enterprise-wide digital transformation priorities and goals. One way to do so is to set up a governance structure that allows you to veto new ServiceNow workflows and configurations that are poorly conceived or incompatible with long-term objectives.
- Foster meaningful relationships among departments and service units: When various departments across your organization jump onto the ServiceNow bandwagon, they’re required to standardize workflows using best-practices approaches, and integrate these workflows into the broader organization in defined, prescriptive ways. These actions can create friction among departments, and lead to internal disagreements and breakdowns in communication. To resolve these sensitive situations, it’s critical that you create personal bridges of understanding among departments, so your departments are willing to continue working together even when the going gets rough.
- Let changes happen organically: As much as you may want to plow ahead with your own ideas for enhancing and adding to your ServiceNow ecosystem, you should restrain yourself and let changes happen organically. Trying to introduce too much too fast will overwhelm your end users. This will only result in poor user adoption. Meanwhile, your focus should be on listening to what your end users tell you they need and want. When you are perceived as responsive and adaptable, end users feel that their input is valued and become much more likely to stay engaged and take ownership of the end results. In short while, they help you become an agent of transformative change.
According to Gartner, by 2021, 40% of IT staff will be “versatilists” who hold multiple roles—most of which will be business- rather than technology-centric.
Getting an initial win with ServiceNow’s ITSM capabilities is hugely important—not only for morale but because it can propel all of your ServiceNow digital transformation wins still to come. As you ponder the all-important “now what?” question, remember to share your ServiceNow vision and roadmap widely, to evangelize the benefits of change, to proactively guard against departments going off in their own direction, to foster meaningful relationships among service units, and to let changes happen organically.
If you found these insights helpful, you'll definitely want to download and read this eBook, The 10 Pillars of ServiceNow Digital Transformation for Non-IT Leaders
This free resource offers a much deeper dive into how to motivate and inspire every service unit in your organization to embrace digital transformation through the use of ServiceNow.
We hope that you enjoyed this article and took away some new ideas for how to find even more value from your ServiceNow investment. If you ever want to connect on anything ServiceNow, we're easy to reach. Just email LetsTalk@crossfuze.com. It's that simple--and so is working with us.
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