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KA2 Delivers Strategic ‘Back-to-Basics’ ServiceNow Project for Global Investment Management Organisation

KA2’s customer provides investment management services including mutual funds, pension management and fund platforms to private and institutional investors. As part of a wider technology evergreening strategy, the customer engaged KA2 to complete a benefits assessment to either re-engineer the existing platform or re-implement a new ServiceNow instance. Based on our recommendations, the decision was taken to re-implement and KA2 were engaged to lead the project.

The Challenge

The company wanted to achieve a ‘clean start’ for its ServiceNow platform, which had been the cornerstone of its ITSM function the previous seven years. The key project outcomes agreed with the customer in line with KA2’s Smarter Framework process included:

  • Building a solid foundation: In the period that the company had been a user of ServiceNow, the platform had become exceedingly complex and was fast becoming obsolete. Functionality that previously had to be custom built and configured to meet the customer requirements, were now available ‘out of the box’. Moving to a new clean instance would allow for a strong foundation to move forward easily with further adoption. Focus was particularly given to IT Change Management, which could take advantage of the existing mature process.
  • Reducing burden: Due to the complexity and technical debt that had built up over time, the customer struggled with each release lifecycle, particularly the testing activity to guarantee release success. A new instance would allow the accelerated adoption of new releases and the additional capabilities offered with less reliance on resources across the company to support the testing and release phases.
  • Declutter: Over seven years, and with previous poor platform housekeeping and operational management, there was much redundant data, reports and configurations that could now be removed to ensure that the new instance was accurate and clean. By removing complex configurations, there was also an opportunity to improve administration activities and enable a more agile delivery model.

The Solution

Using the Smarter Framework delivery model to deliver the new out-of-the-box instance, KA2 spent time to ensure the customer’s business outcomes were fully understood, documented and agreed upon by the key stakeholders.

  • A detailed project plan was designed to meet the customer business requirements, timelines and budget.
  • The KA2 project team was deployed to work in partnership with the customer resources, providing leadership, support, experience and skills to ensure the successful delivery of the end-to-end implementation project.
  • KA2 ensured that the many integrations, data model, data migration, and capability which were fit for the new instance were retained and configured to ensure improved performance.
  • The in-scope processes – IT Change Management, Incident Management (including Major), Problem Management, Request Management, Service Catalogue, Knowledge Management and Service Portal were reassessed with the process owners. KA2 challenged thinking to ensure ‘best practice’ and ‘out-the-box’ functionality was adopted throughout the project.
  • The new z-booted ServiceNow instance and improved processes were implemented following best practice and zero customisation. Throughout the project, KA2 worked closely with the parallel IT Asset Management project team.
  • Data management and transfer from the old ServiceNow instance to the new ServiceNow instance was complex. KA2 undertook all aspects of the migration including data cleansing, restructuring and deploying to the new clean instance.
  • A complex ‘Go Live’ was fully prepared and tested in advance by KA2 in collaboration with the customer’s resources. KA2 worked closely with the customer to ensure all stakeholders required for the release and the associated change approval had confidence to proceed with the final release process.
  • KA2 successfully undertook the release and provided a short period of Early Life Support to the customer post Go Live.

The Benefits

  • The ability to reduce the release cycle and the demand on resources for testing. ServiceNow platform releases are now deployed in days and weeks, rather than months.
  • A clean platform that made further adoption possible with the new capabilities delivered in the ServiceNow major releases.
  • Administration and troubleshooting were improved with no dead or poor configurations hampering the customer’s ability to quickly resolve incidents and issues.
  • The IT Change process, like all other implemented processes, were fully out-the-box. The removal of complex workflows ensured the change, and all supporting processes, operated more efficiently, reduced mistakes and accelerated change approvals and other workflow lifecycles.
  • Further projects to deploy business processes and scoped applications on a now stable and reliable ServiceNow platform could be easily undertaken. This key outcome was designed into the implementation plan and has proved a major benefit for the business.
  • The customer’s ServiceNow resources could refocus their time and efforts on providing new functionality, and significantly reduce the time spent on the maintenance of existing modules.
  • KA2 ensured that the customer’s in-house team were fully self-sufficient and not reliant on external resources to operate the platform post-Go Live.

KA2’s expertise and technical capability were key to the success of our ServiceNow platform re-implementation. The complexity of the project raised a number of challenges, which we overcame together to ensure that the new platform met all of our key project deliverables – a zero-customisation ‘out-of-the-box implementation’ which removed technical debt and enabled rapid adoption of new functionality and agile development capability.

Service Now Platform Owner, Global Investment Management Organisation