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How to start the implementation journey with ServiceNow

Knowing where to start is the most critical step in your ServiceNow journey. Our best practice resources can help you identify the right sequence and planning approach, based on the business outcomes you envision from your Now PlatformTM implementation.

ServiceNow® can help you improve your IT and enterprise service management with a powerful range of capabilities. To get the most out of these capabilities, you need to:

  • Correctly approach the implementation roadmap
  • Build adoption momentum and capture early ROI
  • Sustain and grow value by implementing the right reference architecture and prerequisites

Knowing how to start will help you avoid common missteps that can keep you from expanding capability and usage. Five success factors can increase your implementation success:

  • Success Factor 1 – Clearly define and prioritize your short‑ and long‑term ROI goals, and match them with your implementation priorities. Before implementation, use your business case and capability roadmaps to define and rank the business value you expect from your Now Platform implementation. Be sure to look at both initial deployment and growth opportunities.
  • Success Factor 2 – Make sure you have a foundational configuration management database (CMDB) model, as well as processes for CMDB development and maintenance. To achieve the potential of the Now Platform capabilities, you need effective configuration management. Put baseline capabilities in place for CMDB modeling and maintenance. Start with a simple or bounded set of configuration items (CIs), and expand these as capabilities mature.
  • Success Factor 3 – Identify and capture quick win opportunities to drive early adoption momentum. Request fulfillment, incident management, and a service catalog provide high‑visibility, low‑cost opportunities to quickly engage a large base of users in requirements development, acceptance testing, and usage. Successful engagement will help you build momentum for the rollout and consumption of additional capabilities.
  • Success Factor 4 – Don’t wait to build effective governance, training, and organizational change management. Implementation efforts often prioritize technical activities over management activities that can actually provide greater value. Ideally, the start of a ServiceNow journey should include resources and executive support for developing a governance operating model, training and skill development, and organizational change management.
  • Success Factor 5 – Revisit the service strategy frequently, and avoid repeating patterns that limit future opportunity. Don’t limit ROI potential assessment to the initial Now Platform deployment. Adoption growth will likely uncover new opportunities and priorities, especially beyond IT. Avoid making inflexible decisions based on individual focus areas in the initial implementation, and you’ll have more opportunities to extend the Now Platform to new functions and use cases. Now Platform leads and sponsors should regularly engage with business stakeholders to identify new opportunities to improve enterprise service value.

ServiceNow recommends a five‑stage implementation planning process. Follow these stages for recommended approaches on key decisions and how‑to guidance:

Explore additional phases

Plan

You want to be sure everything is in place for a smooth, successful deployment.

Deploy

You want to be sure you’re following best practices during implementation.

Optimize

You’re up and running and want to get the most from your investment.

Extend

You’re ready to extend ServiceNow into other areas of your enterprise.

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