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Now Forum 18 London – the intersection of now and next

Devoteam at ServiceNow Now Forum 18 collageBy Debbie Elder, Roger O’Kelly, Devoteam UK

For the fifth year in a row, Devoteam took part, along with 2,500 attendees, in ServiceNow’s annual Now Forum at ExCeL London, an event which ServiceNow has cleverly termed “the intersection of now and next”.

Unleash Innovation with the Now Platform

On the first day of Now Forum, 17 October, colleagues attended the pre-conference technical forum, CreatorCon, consisting of workshops and intelligent app builder labs. Exercises included building a no-code app in an hour and building an integration hub. The 500 or so attendees beavering away on the third floor of ExCeL in areas such as customisation or service portals were all fulfilling ServiceNow’s exciting vision of business users assuming a more strategic role within the enterprise.

One of our colleagues who attended CreatorCon as well as the main exhibition, principal consultant Debbie Elder, provided the following insights into the occasion.

Citizen Developers – ServiceNow is focusing on empowering business users with ServiceNow fundamentals training to configure their own applications and workflows, by delivering configuration tools that require little or no coding. The term they use is ‘Citizen Developers’.

I attended the three Track 1 sessions at CreatorCon on day 1: “Building Business Solutions Without Coding on the Now Platform”:

  1. Build your first no-code app in an hour
  2. Put your app to work with workflows – using Flow Designer
  3. Make your app an experience to remember – make your app available to requesters via the service catalog on the self-service portal

I believe there are implications here for the future of ServiceNow consultancies like ours; as ServiceNow steps away from ITSM and into other business areas, such as HR, IT business management, financial management, etc., consultants will require business knowledge to be able to advise on the data model and fit of the software to their processes, rather than mere configuration of the platform.

Customer Success – the buzz is all about customer service and improving the customer experience. This is being achieved with improved mobile apps and the use of chatbots. ServiceNow is enthusing about its Customer Success Center, which contains heaps of material on how to make your ServiceNow journey a success – aimed at customers. “Helping move you forward to the value you’re looking for”.

Case of CSM & AI – I attended a breakout session from Virgin Trains on how they have used the case data captured from their CSM module to reduce fraudulent ticket compensation claims. They have built a custom application that uses AI to identify possible fraudulent claims and collates and maps to other data they already have (such as was there ever a train due to be running on the date and time of the claim). It’s a scoped application but uses CSM data to spot patterns. Very exciting to see how their ServiceNow partner has engaged with them to build a custom solution that knitted into the customer service module – reinforcing my excitement about CSM, that it covers any process that ISN’T ITSM!

Innovation Challenge

With ServiceNow making configuration of its platform simple enough for business users to undertake, rather than engage IT to do it, and lower-skilled IT workers needing to train up in business, as Debbie observes, this should not come as a surprise to anyone operating in a world that speaks daily of transformation. This transfer of skills, driven inevitably by automation, sits with the evolution that AI more broadly represents.

Of course, this ties in with ServiceNow’s vision of One Platform, Unlimited Possibilities, where the vendor is challenging entrepreneurs to take the Now platform into new use cases, industry verticals, and solution white spaces to enable automation built on cross‑enterprise workflows, simple integrations and seamless consumer‑like experiences. And they have formally launched CreatorCon as an innovation innovation challenge, with high rewards for the victors.

Customer Service and Now Forum

Devoteam CSM AI report 2018For the main exhibition on 18 October, Devoteam’s focus was also on customer service management (CSM), following our collaboration this year with ServiceNow on a global CSM Survey, entitled The AI Revolution: Creating a new Customer Service Paradigm. This report uncovers the issues that beset the customer service function today and shows how AI will reinvent customer engagement.

We know that customer service teams struggle to keep pace with customer demand, namely:

  • 39% are challenged to answer repetitive questions in an efficient way;
  • 42% of organisations say they struggle to meet the rising expectations of customer service;
  • 45% of organisations are not available to respond to customer enquiries 24/7.

AI is set to reinvent customer engagement by empowering customer service agents like never before. 74% of adopters of AI are already seeing the benefits of AI technologies that include freeing up agents’ time, more efficient processing of high-volume tasks and providing always-on customer support.

We found attendees at Now Forum were keen to discuss these findings and explore how the AI revolution will affect the CS function.

Our stand also offered an assessment of visitors’ CSM maturity with the help of our very own chatbot! That assessment is still available.

View Devoteam’s video of Now Forum 18 here.

See our Pepper in ServiceNow’s own 1-minute video roundup of the event.

To request the report or take our CSM assessment, please contact

Since the partnership between ServiceNow and Devoteam was formed in 2009, we have gained 270 clients across EMEA and more than 300 ServiceNow experts. Last year, Devoteam secured a status of Double Gold Partner in Sales and Services and was invited to be a Platinum sponsor of Now Forum 18 in the UK and at the three corresponding events in Europe.