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By Chris Bedi
I have a really long commute, and the last thing I need is to be surprised by car trouble. Thankfully, cars nowadays monitor just about everything bumper-to-bumper, warning us in advance before minor issues become major problems. Auto mechanics use diagnostics to pinpoint the exact component that needs attention. That’s the kind of real-time monitoring and predictive intelligence ServiceNow® IT Operations Management brings to the enterprise—and our own use is a great example.
For years, ServiceNow has used IT Service Management and IT Operations Management to dramatically improve the quality of our shared infrastructure services, and we’ve added capabilities as the solutions have evolved. Here’s a look at how we use ITOM to stop service outages before they start.
It all starts by achieving real-time visibility into our enterprise infrastructure and services. We do this using Event Management, which seamlessly integrates with our service-aware CMDB and ITSM processes, aggregating inputs from third-party monitoring solutions such as Splunk, SolarWinds, and SAP Solution Manager.
When events come in, they’re analyzed for duplicates or correlations, dramatically reducing “noise” and improving the quality of incidents coming into our Services Reliability Team (SRT). ITOM also automatically prioritizes incidents and intelligently assigns them to the right resource the first time.
The Event Management dashboard (see screen shot) is the “single pane of glass” that shows the health of all business services in our environment. The boxes change color based on the status, and we can get a closer look by clicking on any box to bring up the service map.
From there, we use Service Mapping for a visual representation of the relationships between services, applications, and devices (see diagram). This eliminates blind spots and allows us to pinpoint the problem area. The service map shows us the details we need to identify and fix the root cause of an issue. In this instance, the problem was related to a memory issue on the database server for SAP HANA.
We are living proof of the measurable benefits ServiceNow ITOM delivers, more consistently and significantly than reactive solutions unable to respond fast enough to changing business demands. With it, we’ve achieved:
98% reduction in “noise” coming into our SRT queue by correlating and prioritizing only the most important events into actionable tickets
9,600 hours saved annually through automated alert management
67% reduction in P1 and P2 incidents via Event Management and process improvements
$780,000 in cost avoidance each year by eliminating manual work
ITOM also led to demonstrable results in these strategic areas:
IncreasedVelocity – By consolidating 36,000 events into only 529 incidents, and then prioritizing and routing them to the right SRT resource, ITOM eliminated the time-consuming, back-and-forth communications among teams. This accelerated our time to resolution and improved service availability to our business groups, partners, and customers.
Actionable Visibility – With the Event Management dashboard, our system admins get instant visibility into the health of our environment and can respond quickly to alerts. And with Service Mapping we can quickly pinpoint the device with the issue and address the root cause. The result? We eliminated outages and reduced the mean time to repair through quick identification of fault domains.
Improved Experience – Our system administrators no longer waste valuable time on duplicate or false alerts. When issues arise, the information we need is at our fingertips, saving us the time and trouble of monitoring multiple IT managers can rest easier, knowing their teams have the insight they need to do their jobs. And end users benefit from the greater uptime that ServiceNow ITOM provides. It’s a win, win.
Technology is always evolving, and so is ServiceNow ITOM. Someday, service outages will be a thing of the past—and by continuing to enhance ITOM with machine intelligence and other advancements, we’re confident that day will come sooner rather than later.