Putting ServiceNow Virtual Agent to work with the Orlando Release

  • ServiceNow Blog
  • Customer Stories
  • Solutions
  • 2020
April 09, 2020

By:  Paul Chorley, CEO and Co-founder, Autotestpro and Dan Ellis, Lead Developer, Autotestpro


At Autotestpro we work in a special position as both a customer and a partner of ServiceNow, strategically augmenting and refining functionalities across the Now Platform® as an early adopter.

We’re a big fan of ServiceNow, so much so that we’ve built our core business within their platform, offering an automated testing and DevOps solution within a collaborative development environment.

It’s about automating and speeding up every stage of the software delivery lifecycle, with technology designed to simplify the release of changes in ServiceNow® and help improve the frequency and quality of releases for our customers.

We’re also a customer ourselves, using the Now Platform on the support side of our business to allow all Autotestpro customers to raise any query they have through our service portal.

We’re working at the forefront of the ServiceNow platform release cycle and that makes the upcoming Orlando particularly exciting. Let me explain why.


Orlando’s upgrades to Virtual Agent

The launch of Orlando is a big stage in Now Platform development for us, with the ServiceNow Virtual Agent and new functionality in the usable topic box. It’s a key driver for Autotestpro to move to ServiceNow Virtual Agent to provide user assistance through conversations within a messaging interface.

ServiceNow has extended many of the core functions in this service to make it more powerful, more flexible and more applicable to real-world business scenarios.

An early look at Orlando’s planned upgrades to Virtual Agent was impressive and the upcoming release indicates we will be able to make a step-change from how we currently deliver support. We will be able to design and build automated conversations that help users quickly obtain information, make decisions and perform common work tasks.

A new survey function will also help us gather metrics on how our customers are using our support services, so we work smarter in the future.

The flexibility and adaptability also promise to be big benefits. Virtual Agent will come with out-of-the-box conversation types that we can use and modify in order to manage the types of conversations that our customers come to us with. This will allow us to relieve some of the pressures that our service desk is under in any typical working week.

From a C-level perspective, ServiceNow Virtual Agent presents a key route to cost savings. This is important because, with Autotestpro being a lean business, we don’t want to have armies of people answering queries; we want to focus on our core business of developing software.


Delivering seamless upgrades for a global business

With upgrades and new features planned for Orlando, there’s plenty more for Autotestpro to get its teeth into beyond Virtual Agent too, when the new release arrives.

The sheer scale of the of new updates means I can say one thing with confidence: our customers are definitely looking to move to Orlando. In fact, I’d go so far as to say that they are chomping at the bit.

The one aspect that tends to worry our customers in terms of any upgrade process is the associated risk. But the way to alleviate this concern is to thoroughly test everything that users will be doing on the new version of a software platform, so they know that no critical business processes are going to fail on go-live.

The union of our own technology with ServiceNow makes this seamless goal a tangible reality.


Excitement in the ServiceNow community

All this said, we’re just one part of a vast ServiceNow ecosystem, so I’m always interested to find out how others view the Now Platform and pending releases.

From conversations across our community, it’s become clear there are many organisations that are looking forward to the new features and technology advancements that Orlando will bring.

Lisa Smith, Business Change Lead at whyaye!, a fellow ServiceNow partner and customer, is one of those in the ServiceNow ecosystem who has spoken about the positive impact the new release will have on agent experiences.

She said recently: “Workspace allows agents to create knowledge articles from an incident, track interaction time and search using the category of outages. These workspace improvements, and more, seen in Orlando provide an easier and more efficient experience for all agents.”


Our plans for Orlando and beyond

Looking ahead, we can see a clear path to expanding our work with ServiceNow. As the Now Platform continues to develop at pace, we can match that to the development of our own business.

Part of the plan is to adopt the ServiceNow change management application with functions such as instance upgrades that happen automatically. Similarly, we are looking forward to using more of the Artificial Intelligence (AI) automation functions that ServiceNow has brought forward even more prevalently in the Orlando release.


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