We say it all the time: Behind every great experience is a great workflow.
But what’s behind a great experience?
If you ask ServiceNow’s User Experience (UX) team, it’s software that is user friendly, visually beautiful, empowering, and productivity-boosting; and that people connect with emotionally. That provides, from start to finish, and at every touch point along the way, a fantastic experience.
That’s the UX team’s mission: to create product experiences that people love. That feel human, simple, and engaging.
Here’s a look at some of the members of the UX team who create great experiences for our customers. [Explore User Experience careers with us!]
Getting to know the user and their issues in depth
Understanding the user and defining the problem is a big part of a UX researcher’s role-- someone like Shibani S., director of user experience research. She’s based in Santa Clara.
Researchers work directly with users to solidly understand their needs and challenges, and make sure ServiceNow has accurately identified the issue.
One of the products Shibani is most proud of working on is Vaccine Administration Management . ServiceNow usually releases solutions every six months. VAM had a two-week deadline because of the urgent need in the healthcare market to simplify scheduling and management of COVID-19 vaccinations. That meant there simply wasn’t time to do the normal in-depth research to understand the end-users and their current processes.
“We had to get creative in our research approach,” says Shibani. “It also meant we had to work even more closely with design, product management, and engineering. “
“VAM taught us how to become comfortable with letting go of perfectly polished deliverables and saying no to other demands so we could prioritize this hugely important effort,” she adds.
One provider used VAM to cut vaccination wait times by almost 90 percent and helped 20 million people get vaccinated within the first few months of its launch.
Not only was VAM a huge success, but the operating model used to design it was so successful that the team has been asked to apply it to other parts of the business.
Shibani loves that she quickly sees the impact of her work. “The speed at which ServiceNow implements solutions is tremendous. In some other companies, it might take years before research has any impact. Here, it’s really rewarding to see the pace at which research insights are adopted into our products,” she says.
She joined ServiceNow in 2019, excited by the opportunity to stretch herself by working for a company serving many markets and different types of users. But she also liked the culture. “Everyone here has a growth mindset and looks for ways to be better. This really is a customer-first company, and it’s a dream come true for any researcher,” she says.
Bridging interests, keeping it simple and globally relevant
Giu V. is a product design manager in Performance Analytics and Reporting (PAR), and based in the Netherlands. He says product design is the bridge between what the user would love to have and the product manager would love to offer, and what engineering and ServiceNow’s business goals say is possible.
“Designers are interpreters, translators. We talk to the different interests, put things together, take it back to the users and other stakeholders, and listen to what they think so that we can build the best experience together ,” he explains.
PAR has a platform-wide view, handling all the visualizations, dashboards, and KPIs across the Now Platform. That makes Giu especially sensitive to providing a uniformly easy and familiar experience, no matter the application. While the platform is complex, it can’t feel that way to the user. “It’s like a car. It has a lot of parts, but to the driver, it’s simple and familiar.”
Giu says the softer skills – the ability to collaborate, get information from people, understand different views, and communicate with a variety of people – are vital to succeeding in product design.
“So many different types of industries and people use our products. We must understand all of them and be able to talk to all of the different users,” he says.
Documentation should match the quality of the product
When a new feature or product is approved for development, UX’s product content team gets to work. It produces the documentation that users consult to configure ServiceNow software or get help.
Sandeep M. is a technical writer on the team, working in India. He writes documentation for products from the Security Operations Business Unit.
He says he is most proud of creating documentation for the integration of MITRE-ATT&CK into the Now Platform, which was part of the Quebec release. MITRE-ATT&CK is a widely used database of adversary tactics and techniques based on real-world cyber-security threats.
ServiceNow is one of the first companies to integrate MITRE-ATT&CK into their network; most competitors offer it as standalone software, says Sandeep. It made ServiceNow a thought leader in the security space, Sandeep says. And that raises the bar for documentation.
“Our content needs to match the quality of our product so that the entire user experience is at the same high level and users are delighted with everything,” he explains.
Sandeep joined ServiceNow in 2020, excited by seeing so many opportunities. “I wanted to be part of a team developing a technically advanced and strategically differentiated cloud product. And I loved the fact that the Now Platform was quickly being adopted by businesses, which meant it was growing fast,” he says.
A gold medal for designing an engaging experience
The bar is set higher now. We’re an enterprise company challenged to design consumer-grade software. Our customers expect the same usability, performance, and standards that they get when they share videos on social media or check out vacation spots online. And we’re clearing it, thanks to the talent for design that’s a pleasure to look at and use that is the soul of the UX team.
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