Five ServiceNow Implementation Challenges to Avoid at All Costs

With the increasing virtual nature of the workforce and the web of apps, platforms, and databases vital to getting work done, there’s a lot that can go wrong for your teams. One hiccup in your workflow can have a domino effect that impacts productivity, delays restoration and delivery of services, and erodes customer satisfaction. Solutions like ServiceNow, with their promise to make the world of work better for everyday people, are designed to address these issues proactively and deliver the outcomes your business needs.

However, some organizations run afoul of problems as they attempt to take their cloud-based solutions from concept to launch. Avoid these 5 ServiceNow implementation challenges and your teams will achieve greater productivity, fewer interruptions, and smoother workflows.

1. Ignoring Stakeholders’ Needs

Many solutions implementation failures stem from a clear misunderstanding of the expected results. Executive or technical stakeholders fixate on the features or functionality advertised by the vendors, getting excited by the output or outcomes promised. These are all well and good, but it’s important to understand what outcomes you’re trying to achieve.

Think of it this way. When someone is interested in baking a cake, they need to consider not only the ingredients needed and the baking process, but also the tastes and expectations of the people being served. If they want something sweet and you serve them a moist and frosted cake that also has a spicy kick in every bite, they’ll leave the fruits of your labor untouched. Delivery for the sake of delivery without a clear view of what outcome is expected by a customer is costly.

In our experience, any successful ServiceNow project accounts for the real-world impact. Here’s a hypothetical example. Let’s say a higher education firm wanted to implement service portals that students, faculty, and staff could readily access. On the surface, the business might envision the objective to be the expansion of the self-service features of the Now Platform to a wider user base. If they were to look beyond the technical specifications to the desired result, they would see what they’re doing is facilitating higher education without tech disruptions. In short, adopting ServiceNow is a way to make the learning process as smooth as possible.

2. Neglecting to Catalog the Offered Services

Whether you’re looking to support businesses functionality and customer satisfaction with the IT Service Management platform, IT Asset Management, or anything in between, consolidating IT operations into a unified platform is appealing. What slows the process is the organic and unsystematic way organizations have grown over time. This creates silos that separate processes, data, and people from the whole.

Before you launch into any ServiceNow solution, it’s essential to understand the service in play and the necessary outcomes. You cannot automate processes or anticipate challenges that your team faces to automate the resolution unless you have done the work to identify all the workflows to include under the ServiceNow umbrella.

Here’s another hypothetical situation. A large enterprise organization needs to process over 200 new workers each month with relative ease. How would they do it with ServiceNow? By following ServiceNow Success maps, they could transform and enhance their employee experience, replacing disparate systems across various departments with one-stop-shop functionality. As part of any successful project lifecycle, they could identify not only the platforms directly touching the customer-facing team, but the support teams behind them in HR, IT, and finance to create a seamless experience.

3. Over-Customizing Your End Product

Sometimes, organizations let the limitations of their own established business practices dictate their future thinking. Your current workflow or processes might lack the crucial automation features that are key to ServiceNow’s exemplary performance, so you downsize key elements. Or the ease of access, absent in older platforms, might be uncharted territory in the new system and require a reevaluation of your expectations.

Trying to uplift the effectiveness of outdated processes by connecting them to ServiceNow can be problematic. If someone was trying to drive by only looking out the rearview mirror, you’d call them reckless. The same should be said for those organizations clinging to outmoded operations, which often elevates their overall expenses as well as hinders their capabilities. Sunken cost perceptions can be hard to overcome, but stakeholders need to live with the loss and move on to greener pastures.

Organizations also end up creating overly complex workflows that can cause problems overall. The more steps there are in the completion of a workflow, the greater the possibility that something can go wrong. The same goes for integrations. Though ServiceNow is multifaceted and largely tech agnostic, it’s important to recognize when there are redundancies in current systems. Better yet, it’s important to identify where you would benefit from adopting a new cloud platform rather than trying to tie overlapping platforms together.

4. Shortchanging Documentation and Training

What’s the need for documentation? ServiceNow aims to simplify problem solving of support tickets or cases, right? True, these platforms exist to remove lengthy problem-solving and support tickets from the equation with AIOps features, but there are benefits to creating documentation for future users and situation.

You’ll have scenarios where new members of your support staff or your managed service partner need to get up-to-speed quickly. When resolving a customer issue, you’ll need a clear understanding of what’s been done, so any adjustments are swift and streamlined rather than reactive and meandering. Any actions you can take now to outline, delineate, and share information and fixes with future users will only help your organization in the long run.

5. Choosing a Vendor, Not a Partner

The partner you choose to work with means everything. If your business solutions are hyper-fixated on the specifications, but don’t consider your business challenges or real-world applications, then your ServiceNow products will always fall short of their full potential.

You need people who understand the full range of solutions and products available through ServiceNow and have the resources available to integrate the wide range of cloud solutions (AWS, Microsoft Azure, VMware, Google Cloud, IBM Cloud, etc.) into a cohesive whole. Working with a partner like D2M can simplify the challenges to your ServiceNow implementation, helping your digital workforce achieve the performance and results they crave—without any of the long-term headaches.

Want to avoid ServiceNow implementation challenges from the start? D2M can help you. Our team of experienced professionals are outcome-driven and can guide you through the ServiceNow adoption process.


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