ServiceNow has become extraordinarily central to many IT operations and software delivery activities. More than ever, organizations need ServiceNow to be integrated with the rest of the software delivery toolchain to automate the flow of work and eliminate any of the overhead that may be slowing down cross-functional collaboration. In addition, IT leadership is looking for ways to marry the data and insight available in ServiceNow with the information stored throughout the rest of their best-of-breed toolchain to improve visibility, decision-making and business outcomes.

 

Synchronizing ServiceNow Problems and Incidents with Jira and Other Agile Tools

The first use case that organizations often seek to address with ServiceNow integration is improving the problem/incident resolution process when developers need to be involved. 

So many IT support professionals are frustrated by having to duplicate information about tickets from ServiceNow into other tools. Teams are wasting valuable time trying to keep records up-to-date in multiple systems and sending emails and chat messages to follow up on details and statuses. The fact that teams use different systems of record and different workflows makes collaboration and communication between IT support staff and developers very challenging. 

Tasktop's ServiceNow integration eliminates those issues by creating a completely visible and traceable defect reporting and resolution process. Tasktop automates the flow of information across tools, synchronizing work items created in ServiceNow into the Agile planning and issue tracking tools used by developers, like JiraVSTS or many others

 

Service integration pattern example 

 

Tasktop flows all the information necessary for collaboration from tool to tool in near-real time, including fields, statuses, and attachments. Teams can also exchange comments directly on the artifact inside their own tool, maximizing productivity for support engineers and developers and creating a completely traceable thread of communication. 

Tasktop integrates ServiceNow with tens of tools in the IT toolchain, including test management tools, which means support engineers can view the ticket's progress as the fix goes through testing.

Tasktop supports ServiceNow including the Service Desk, Agile Development (previously SDLC), and PPM modules, to help you flow the right information from your ServiceNow toolset to other tools used in the software delivery process.  

Common artifacts flowing in ServiceNow integrations include: Problems, Incidents, Tasks, Project Tasks, Defects, Features and Stories and many additional native fields.

 

Why Integrate ServiceNow with Tasktop?

Tasktop's easy-to-use, reliable and scalable Integration Hub helps teams collaborate with each other seamlessly, with practitioners never having to leave their tool of choice or copy/paste information.  

  • Avoid plugin pandemonium: While many tools may offer inexpensive plugins for ServiceNow, they are usually unsuited for large software delivery organizations with thousands of employees. Unlike Tasktop, plugins provide very narrow functionality with no granular control over behavior and proliferate point-to-point integration between tools. Tasktop provides a scalable integration infrastructure for Enterprise IT, providing admins with full control over workflow, field updates, field display and data transformation. 
  • Reliable version support: Your toolchain is constantly being updated as vendors release new software updates. Tasktop's Integration Factory runs over half a million tests every night on over 300 tool versions to ensure your integrations will continue to work even as you upgrade to the latest and greatest version.  
  • Making sense of your data: With so much variability in the way teams capture, organize and manage their work in multiple systems of record, it's exceedingly hard to create meaningful metrics without a lot of manual data manipulation. Taskop's Model-Based Integration standardizes the information exchanged by integrations, normalizing the data in real-time as it flows across repositories. It also stores the normalized data into a reporting database, making it possible to generate reports and metrics across tools easily. 
  • Easy-to-use, reliable and scalable: Tasktop, a "Now Certified App" since 2013, is used by nearly half of the Fortune 100 to connect their software delivery toolchain, with ServiceNow emerging in recent years as one of the most popular integrations.  

 

Popular ServiceNow Integration Patterns

As ServiceNow continues to expand beyond IT service management to project and portfolio management, Agile development and enterprise DevOps, there are many different use cases for integration. These are the most popular ServiceNow integration patterns in 2018:

 

#1 ServiceNow to Agile Planning & Issue Tracking to Test Management: Improve Ticket Resolution

Both support and development teams need a visible and traceable defect reporting and resolution process. In this common integration pattern, ServiceNow trouble tickets that require engineering involvement are automatically created in the developer's Agile planning or issue tracking tool as a new issue or story. The ticket can be routed to the correct development team and tool based on fields like Configuration Item or Assignment Group. The assigned developer and the support engineer can exchange information about the issue directly on the artifacts themselves, from within their own tools. As the issue progresses through development and test, its status is updated in ServiceNow to keep the support engineer in the loop. 

Here’s an example of this pattern in ServiceNow, Jira and Micro Focus ALM:  

 

And another example of this pattern in ServiceNow, VSTS and Micro Focus ALM:  

 

#2 ServiceNow to Agile Planning & Issue Tracking: Improve Work Prioritization and Transparency

Developers have to support both planned work and unplanned work, for example from incidents assigned to them from ServiceNow. An integration between ServiceNow and Agile tools allows developers to see all their assigned work in one single view and prioritize where to focus. At the same time, the status of the incident is visible to practitioners working in ServiceNow. 

 

#3 Demand Management to Agile Planning: Drive Feature Creation from PPM

An integration between ServiceNow's PPM module and your developers' Agile planning tool helps kick off story breakdown faster. When a demand matures into a project in ServiceNow PPM, the integration automatically creates a corresponding feature in Jira, TFS, Agile Central or other Agile planning tool. There's no manual trigger or handover - rather the feature appears in Agile and the development workflow can begin. 

Similarly, ServiceNow PPM can be integrated with requirements management tools like Jama or DOORS, so business analysts and product owners can break down programs into requirements before flowing them over to developers. 

 

#4 Release Automation to ServiceNow: Automate Change Requests 

This popular integration pattern automates tasks as part of the release pipeline. For example, when a build is ready for deployment (a CI/CD tool like Jenkins has a successful build0, Tasktop automatically creates a change request in ServiceNow. The change request's manifest will include a list of the stories in the build, each linked to the story artifact in the Agile planning tool, to facilitate the approval process.  

 

#5 ServiceNow Agile Development (SDLC) to another Agile Planning & Issues Tracking Tool: Improve Performance Management

It is not uncommon for an organization to have multiple Agile planning and issue tracking tools, with some teams or roles using ServiceNow Agile Development (SDLC) and others using another tool, like Jira, VersionOne, Targetprocess or LeanKit. This integration pattern creates one master view of the activity across all Agile tools, by flowing the epics, stories, bugs, sub-tasks and other artifacts into one of the tools as ‘master’. Reports are run off the master, encompassing data from all Agile tools.

 

#6 Test Management to ServiceNow Agile Development: Improve Defect Resolution

Integrating test management tools such as Micro Focus ALM or QCTosca, or QASymphony with ServiceNow Agile Development improves alignment between software engineers and test engineers. Defects opened in test management are automatically created in ServiceNow Agile Development as new issues in the appropriate project’s board. Changes the developer makes to the defects’ status are visible to the QA engineer in test management.

 

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