ServiceNow CMDB Review

Dependable source of data, scales with demand, and stable

What is our primary use case?

We are using it as the foundation of the ServiceNow platform. It allows you to mature other processes such as ITSM, ISAM, and security operations. It is a SaaS solution.

How has it helped my organization?

It has allowed us to reduce the number of outages and the duration of outages.

What is most valuable?

It is a dependable source of data. If I want to understand what technologies are used to deliver certain business outcomes, this is what I would use. I can know that this particular server is being used to deliver this business application or business service.

What needs improvement?

There are some gaps in the technologies that can be solved. Operational technology isn't quite 100% there yet, but I hear it is on the roadmap.

I would also like it to be cheaper.

For how long have I used the solution?

I have been using this solution for five years.

What do I think about the stability of the solution?

From a technical perspective, we've had no issues. A lot of it comes down to just making sure that the processes are being followed properly, which is a process people's problem rather than a tool problem.

What do I think about the scalability of the solution?

Being a SaaS-based product, it scales with demand. We've had no issues on that front.

It covers a lot because we do employee self-service. We probably have over 300 users. They can be anything across IT because anybody who is interacting with the service desk is going to go through this solution, so everybody in the company has access to it.

In terms of increasing its overall usage, we identify any chances to bring it on board. We use it, and we have also got customers for our CRM to leverage it. We've basically got a philosophy of looking to identify whether they can be on the ServiceNow platform before moving in a different direction.

How are customer service and technical support?

We contacted them occasionally when we come across some form of bug or something. They've been quite responsive to the issues that we've had and helped us in moving forward.

Which solution did I use previously and why did I switch?

I'm not certain about this organization because it was here when I came on board. At previous ones, they had HP or BMC that were replaced by ServiceNow.

How was the initial setup?

Essentially, it was about collecting the right data to store in the database. So, it involved understanding what it is that we cared about, identifying our use cases, and driving the automation to be able to collect that data and store it in the right place. I worked with the security teams to get the access that we needed at various endpoints to be able to allow the tool to function. To get it fully up and running and operational took about ten weeks.

What about the implementation team?

We used professional services to get it off the grounds, and then from there, roles were defined for the responsibility to be applied. It was a part of their job to ensure that it is performing as it should.

It requires participation from the network team and the security team to allow the tool to function. After that, somebody is required to adopt the role of a configuration manager or process owner. 

In terms of the number of people, five or six people were involved, but some of them were only for a handful of hours or for escalations. The security administrator and the network administrator were required quite a bit upfront, and then from there, they weren't involved as much.

What was our ROI?

It has provided the ROI. The consistency of processes has given dividends. Previously, you couldn't scale by just relying on emails and conversations to understand what tasks were being done. It gives us the transparency of everything that is being worked on. We have the whole audit trail as well as all tasks that are being accomplished.

What's my experience with pricing, setup cost, and licensing?

I would like it to be cheaper. If you've got a large environment, it can get quite expensive quite quickly. You still get a return on investment, but everybody has a tight budget.

In terms of licensing, everything is pretty much known upfront. Being SaaS-based, there are no real additional gotchas that we came across.

What other advice do I have?

I would advise others to try to remain as out of the box as possible. It is built for the solution that you're going after. I see a lot of people who try to make it look like their previous tool, and they were leaving that previous tool for a key reason.

I would rate ServiceNow CMDB a nine out of ten. There is always a little bit of room for improvements, but so far, it is much greater than what we had previously.

**Disclosure: I am a real user, and this review is based on my own experience and opinions.
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