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An aerial view of the Utah State University campus nestled between some mountains on a sunny, spring day
Utah State University logo

USU’s IT transformation supports its commitment to student success

25%

Increase in IT technician productivity

Replaced

Costly billing system

2K

Hours saved annually with custom HR app

Utah State University (USU) is a public research university with 27,000+ undergraduate and graduate students, along with 800 faculty and 1,600 support staff. USU had a decentralized IT model and decided to move to a university‑wide global shared services infrastructure. It chose ServiceNow to provide an ITSM platform that could support multiple IT groups.

Driving student success and employee satisfaction

Utah State University delivers outstanding academics and great campus experiences
Highly-ranked among public universities, Utah State University (USU) is grounded in the principle that academics come first. The university is committed to cultivating diversity of thought and culture, and serving the public through learning, discovery, and engagement. When USU’s ServiceNow development team saw the opportunity to break down departmental barriers and transform the campus experience, they seized it.

USU decided to move to a federated IT approach to transform the way it delivered IT services to students, faculty, and staff. The university wanted to maintain departmental IT resources while integrating them into a university-wide global shared services infrastructure. To do this, USU needed an IT service management (ITSM) platform that could support multiple IT groups while coordinating their activities. This would also help reduce duplication.

ServiceNow enables a strategic, shared-services approach to IT, automating and personalizing request management
USU began using ServiceNow® IT Service Management, built on the Now Platform®, for its central IT group. The university then expanded use among its departmental IT teams. Now, when an end user enters an incident or request through the Now Platform, it’s automatically routed to the right IT person, whether that is someone in central IT or an embedded departmental resource.

USU also created a ServiceNow® Incident Management extension called MyTech, which automatically shows end users a photograph of their assigned technician along with contact information when they submit a ticket. “Before, we worked off paper and phone calls,” says Steve Funk, who runs USU’s ServiceNow development team. “With ServiceNow, our faculty, staff, and students can go online and make requests by themselves.”

With ServiceNow self-service, USU IT recovers 130 technician hours a week
Previously, USU had 13 full-time desktop support technicians, who would spend 15 hours a week on the phone answering trouble tickets, rather than actually going around the campus fixing desktops. With ServiceNow self-service, USU reduced that to five hours, and the technician can do the work they were intended to do. By freeing up 25% of their time, USU is recovering 130 hours a week—the equivalent of having three extra technicians.

“Because ServiceNow gives us a searchable knowledge base, we can also use part-time students to answer the phones,” says Steve. “All the information they need is at their fingertips.”

Utah State University logo
Utah State University
CUSTOMER
Utah State University
HEADQUARTERS
Logan, Utah, USA
INDUSTRY
Education
EMPLOYEES
5,001 to 50,000
An overhead shot of students in a library

ServiceNow goes to the heart of USU’s mission. We’re accountable for our students’ success, and we want to give them a great experience. With ServiceNow, we’re doing this.

Steve Funk

ServiceNow Lead Developer and Project Manager

Custom app built with ServiceNow eliminates legacy system costs, integrates billing and IT service management, and improves accuracy for USU
As USU continued to use ServiceNow, it realized that it was more than an incident management system—ServiceNow was a platform for the university to develop its own applications. Its first custom app was for IT billing. “With ServiceNow, we could integrate billing directly into our IT service management processes, making our billing more accurate,” says Steve. “It also eliminated the hardware and maintenance costs of our existing system.”

Now, when a user requests a priced service catalog item, ServiceNow automatically creates a billing record when the service is completed. At the end of the month, ServiceNow turns these into departmental invoices, which USU then sends out.

USU now views IT as a critical partner that solves problems in innovative ways
Steve and his team quickly found more opportunities to improve services and reduce costs using ServiceNow rapid workflow development and knowledge management capabilities. Not only is Steve’s team delivering value across the university, but it is also elevating its visibility as a critical partner for solving key problems.

For example, using ServiceNow, the team developed a custom app for HR called MyTime, which enables university staff to submit their timesheets, overtime, and leave requests online. Supervisors are informed via email. Once they approve or deny requests, employees are notified immediately. The app—which was built in three months—was immediately adopted by everyone on campus within a week of launch.

“Developing the app in ServiceNow has reduced manual entry and allows personnel to work more efficiently,” says Steve. “It’s saving us 2,000 hours of administrative effort every year.”

With ServiceNow app, USU enables high school students to earn college credits
The State of Utah’s STEPUP to Higher Education initiative provides programs and resources to encourage Utah students to pursue education after high school. The Concurrent Enrollment program allows high school students to earn college credit from Utah’s eight public colleges. USU volunteered to build an app where students could apply for and pay for these courses from any of the state’s public colleges.

“We built the app in less than three months using ServiceNow, including pulling student information from the state database and connecting to a payment gateway,” says Steve. “The feedback from the state, students, and schools has been very positive.”

USU continues to expand use of ServiceNow for extended student services
Most recently, USU went live with a ServiceNow app for handling scholarship acceptances—and there’s more to come. A new student orientation project is in the works, which will allow advisors to track the activities students need to complete when they arrive so they can reach out to help them if they’re struggling. This goes to the very heart of USU’s mission.

“We’re accountable for our students’ success, and we want to give them a great experience,” says Steve. “We’re doing this with ServiceNow.”

 

ServiceNow Apps at USU

  • My Time
    Leave request, leave tracking, and timesheet system for USU employees
  • Software Licensing
    Purchasing and distribution of site-licensed software at USU
  • Scholarships
    Scholarship notification and acceptance system
  • Automated Billing Management
    Automated billing of USU departments for IT services
  • P-Card
    P-Card requests and transaction approvals
  • Step Up to Higher Education
    State of Utah’s concurrent enrollment system for Utah high school students
  • Fire Code Violation Tracking
    Notification and tracking of USU fire-code violations 
  • Knowledge Bases
    Makes organization’s knowledge available to those who need it 
  • Utah Nature Explorers
    Supports an extension program that helps educators share Utah’s natural world with students

Coming soon

  • Travel Authorization and Reimbursement
  • Student Orientation Tracker
  • Residency Application
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