The Human Element Ignites Intelligent Automation

The Human Element Ignites Intelligent Automation

ServiceNow has been hard at work across its software engineering departments in an effort to being new levels of Machine Learning and Artificial Intelligence to the cloud services that contemporary businesses now depend upon.

With firms in all verticals now looking for strategic direction in their IT Service Management (ITSM) roadmaps, the next tier for many businesses is a new level of Intelligent Automation where the ServiceNow platform can be used to find ways to automate as many workflow and process actions as possible.

In slightly more technical terms, this is technology that is capable of extracting data out of specific customer instances across defined industry verticals. That anonymized data is then shipped to a ‘training engine’ where a data model is built to create the Intelligent Automation brain power.

That same computer brain intelligence can then be used by other ServiceNow platform customers who themselves can further help to train the open models being created.

The human factor

Reflecting on the way these technologies are now impacting enterprises, ServiceNow EMEA Vice President Sales Philip van der Wilt reminds us that we still need to embrace the human factor when putting these new Intelligent Automation mechanics into practice.

“The emphasis for ServiceNow is very much on the end user experience. An IT tool on its own is not a solution, nor is any organizational structure. The human element needs to be there front and center for any contemporary cloud and mobile technology to actually work,” said van der Wilt.

Stressing the reason why ServiceNow calls its annual user, partner and customer event Knowledge, van der Wilt explained that the community gathering element of shows like Knowledge17 (and the rest of the working year for that matter) are crucial to successful digital transformation and adoption of Intelligent Automation.

Tearing down enterprise walls

“IT can help lead and initiate change, but essentially it’s all about tearing down walls and bringing people together,” said van der Wilt. “A lot of companies tend to take the workflows and processes they have an attempt to make things a bit better. Instead, we need to challenge CIOs with the imperative to do things differently and become thought leaders within their own organizations.”

These assertions have one proviso heeds van der Wilt, “All changes in any enterprise need to have contextual value and relevance. This way the CIO can justify all changes to the CEO and change can be strategically implemented across all Line of Business functions.

Ultimately we get to a point where we have moved from ‘alert & response’ as we move to embrace a model of ‘predict & prevent’,” he said.

Service advantages

ServiceNow’s Intelligent Automation Engine works to prevent outages before they happen, automatically categorize and route incidents, predict future performance and benchmark performance against IT peers.

ServiceNow has now brought Machine Learning and Intelligent Automation to the four of the biggest IT use cases that IT has today. Advantages will be felt in automatically categorizing & routing work; predicting future performance; and benchmarking performance against peer systems.

As these new powers now come online, van der Wilt is enthused and excited about the service advantage opportunity in front of us and the new era in workplace productivity that we can now enter. At the same time, he also reminds us to keep it real and talk to each other like human beings so that we can get the most out of the data models and technology brain power at our fingertips.

It’s time for new Intelligent Automation… and maybe a hug too.

Adrían Bridgwater
Technology Journalist tracking 'developer' for Computer Weekly, Forbes, The Register & Internet of Business.

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