Defining the Service-Oriented Enterprise

By Frank Slootman - 2014-04-29


It is imperative that IT becomes the backbone of the modern enterprise! But this major shift is not necessarily hard-wired. For so long, IT has been kept busy by putting out fires and keeping the lights on that service management has tended to become an afterthought.


And it’s really not that different in other service domains within the enterprise. Does purchasing really think of itself as a service? What about HR or facilities? Each organization has important service relationships tied to the rest of the enterprise, but they are not managing service yet. Remember that there’s a difference between delivering services and managing services.


IT must become THE source to manage enterprise service and then deliver these services to the other lines of business. And within this new model, we have identified five foundational pillars that define Enterprise Service Management.


  • Service Taxonomy – The description, identification, naming and classification of standardized service offerings. If we can define the services to be managed, we can structure, manage and automate them.
  • Service Experience – The service experience further translates the taxonomy into an actionable online catalog. The service experience emphasis is placed on the user interface design and branding, allowing the expression of the model to its users.
  • Service Delivery – The orchestration of the end-to-end service process flow. Services have an anatomy that comprises all of the steps, workflows, automations and integrations that make up that service.
  • Service Assurance – Event management and automated remediation when something goes wrong. We have made significant advancements in IT Operations Management by expanding our workflow to include the appropriate automated checks and balances.
  • Service Analytics – Providing visibility into the availability and performance of the services we are delivering. With the acquisition of Mirror42 last year, we’ve added significant depth and breadth to our analytical capabilities – specifically around time-series reporting and the use of KPIs.


You will be hearing a lot more about these five pillars of Enterprise Service Management –our job is to demonstrate the value behind this new model – to partner with our customers over this transformational journey because, at its core, ServiceNow is a service management company in an enterprise, not just within the IT context.

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