ServiceNow is the enterprise IT cloud company. We transform IT by automating and managing IT service relationships across the global enterprise. Organizations deploy our service to create a single system of record for IT and automate manual tasks, standardize processes, and consolidate legacy systems. Using our extensible platform, our customers create custom applications and evolve the IT service model to service domains inside and outside the enterprise.

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Product Overview

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1 Overview

ServiceNow is a leading provider of cloud-based services that automate enterprise IT operations. We focus on transforming enterprise IT by automating and standardizing business processes, transforming IT’s relationship to its customers, and consolidating IT across the global enterprise. Organizations deploy our service to create a single system of record for enterprise IT, lower operational costs, and enhance efficiency. Additionally, our customers use our extensible platform to build custom applications for automating activities unique to their business requirements.

2 What Do I Get with ServiceNow?

ServiceNow offers the following services and benefits.

  • On-demand IT Service Management and IT governance functions.
  • Guaranteed performance, availability, and continuity of service.
  • Data confidentiality and data integrity.

2.1 Modular Applications

The ServiceNow suite of applications is completely modular. This means that your business can use all or any subset of those applications, as its specific needs dictate. The modules that comprise the ServiceNow suite are illustrated below.

2.2 Core Platform Functionality

The ServiceNow platform offers a core set of functionality available to every instance.

  • ServiceNow Reporting
  • Social IT
    • ServiceNow Chat
    • ServiceNow Live Feed
  • ServiceNow Content Management System (CMS)
  • Platform as a Service (PaaS) support
  • Shared services
  • Line of business applications
Note: ServiceNow Discovery, ServiceNow Orchestration, and ServiceNow PaaS features are licensed separately. Contact your ServiceNow representative for more information.

2.3 Security

ServiceNow maintains a unique multi-instance architecture that provides all customers with dedicated applications and relational databases to prevent co-mingling of customer data. Firewalls, load balancers, intrusion prevention systems, and a segmented network architecture protect each client’s environment.

2.4 High Availability

The ServiceNow high availability architecture ensures that our customers achieve maximum security and data isolation though our multi-instance architecture. The high availability architecture not only improves disaster recovery, but also allows for high availability during preventative maintenance.

Each datacenter includes full redundancy and fault tolerant infrastructure for electrical, cooling, network, security, and server systems that are maintained by ServiceNow personnel. All deployed servers are enterprise scale servers with redundant power and storage configurations to ensure maximum uptime and service availability. Each production application server is load balanced to ensure availability and allow the instance to scale to support more users. In addition, each client instance has multiple connections to the Internet. Mirror datacenters replicate the production database servers in near real time to another datacenter in the same geographic region.

ServiceNow supports the following failover scenarios:

  • During a disaster of up to, and including, the complete loss of a datacenter, ServiceNow will failover the entire datacenter to its mirrored geographic datacenter.
  • If a customer’s infrastructure component fails, ServiceNow will failover customer instances affected by the infrastructure failure to the mirrored geographic datacenter.
  • When performing normal maintenance of infrastructure components, ServiceNow will failover customer instances affected by the infrastructure maintenance to the mirrored geographic datacenter and perform maintenance on the vacated instances in order to maintain the highest levels of security, availability, and scalability.

2.5 Backup and Recovery

ServiceNow maintains seven daily and three weekly backups on disk. Daily backups are preserved for one week. Weekly backups are preserved for one month. The backup data never leaves the datacenter. Backups include data from the primary and mirrored datacenters of all customers instances, including production and sub-production instances.

ServiceNow generally does not schedule backups for specific instances because most instances share a database server with several other instances. The entire database server is backed up each night.

Restoring from backup, especially for production, is a last resort. There is always the potential for data loss because anything saved after the backup was taken is lost. Also, while the restoration process is running, the production instance is unavailable. For some customers, it can take many hours to restore causing an unacceptable amount of downtime.

2.6 Automatic Updates

ServiceNow releases regular updates to customers several times a year at no additional cost. The upgrade process automatically preserves any customizations and allows you to review and approve changes.

3 Who Uses ServiceNow?

ServiceNow users typically fall into one or more of these broad types:

  • Employees use ServiceNow to request IT business services, such as reporting a service interruption or ordering a computer. Learn more about using ServiceNow.
  • IT support staff use ServiceNow to manage service requests, incidents, and problems. Learn more about using ServiceNow.
  • Administrators manage how other users access ServiceNow. They make applications available to selected users by granting the users roles and other access controls. They also typically manage notifications and access to reports. Learn more about administering ServiceNow.
  • Implementers deploy a set of process applications and platform features that address an organization’s business needs. Typically, they install and configure the process applications and may also create custom applications. Learn more about implementing ServiceNow.
  • Developers create new functionality with scripts or custom applications to extend an instance beyond standard configurations. Typically, they automate processes, add functionality, and integrate ServiceNow with outside applications. Learn more about developing ServiceNow.

4 How Do I Log In to ServiceNow?

All you need to access ServiceNow is an Internet connection and a supported web browser or mobile device. Users can log in to the standard user interface or a custom user interface such as an employee self-service portal.

5 Additional Resources

ServiceNow is more than just software. Users also have access to a community that includes: