Service Now: The Now at Work Conference Recap

Posted: 12/12/2019

by: Jo Schneider

Last month,  I was invited to attend Service Now’s “Now at Work” Conference in Sydney. It was an insightful conference about modern digital workflows that unlock productivity and transform the employee and customer experience.

One particular point it drove home was that systems are for processing and humans are for value-adding. If you’re going to go to work, make sure it’s work that is worthwhile. I love this because it’s what we’re always talking to our clients about and this is, of course, where technology can assist!

With the drive for system implementation increasing in the Higher Education sector to increase efficiency, aid compliance and transform the student experience, it was great to hear best practices – particularly from those in the Higher Education sector. Here’s a few of my notes if you didn’t make it there yourself:

The challenges – when things don’t go as planned

So, what actions guarantee that a system implementation won’t go to plan?

  • Not getting your processes right BEFORE implementing a system
  • Not having new processes embedded in your business first
  • Not engaging stakeholders throughout the system implementation
  • Not having a change management strategy in place

We see many of these issues ourselves, and it’s often the reason we get called in to help with system implementations.

The role of technology is to simplify and streamline what is already working well in your business and to use technology to make your processes the best that they can be. With these highly configurable systems we often see universities simply automating what they’re already doing rather than actually using the opportunity to review and improve their process first! While we don’t believe in forcing your processes to fit a system, we do always recommend that you prepare for these implementations by undertaking a process redesign activity first. That way, your implementation adds even more value !

You can’t get around the work of mapping and simplifying your processes before a system implementation of you want it done right and have maximum buy-in from staff.

The opportunities – when things go right

We’ve all experienced – at some point – how incredible it can be when technology shares the workload so that we can work on the value-adding tasks and relationships we need to.

The brand experience was reiterated at the conference, it really got me to thinking that the your brand really is just the sum of small, discrete and individual experiences that your student has with your organisation. With technology we can now get the view of the holistic impact of this experience and start to see the student journey in a central source of truth. Systems like CRMs or ServiceNow are changing how we see this journey and providing us with tools to connect departments like never before, so the discrete experiences are no longer in isolation and the student gets one ‘university’ experience.

Deakin University Case Study

Carmen van den Bogaard, Manager, Performance Reporting and Analytics at Deakin University, spoke about how Deakin University is using Customer Service Management to deliver proactive service for their students from issue to resolution to drive greater student and staff satisfaction.

Her advice for success is:

  • Tap into the knowledge of stakeholders and bring them on the journey with you
  • Make data-driven decisions
  • Phasing the implementation process – starting with the teams with more mature processes first

Key tips and takeaways:

  • Take staff on the journey and embed them in the project
  • Look after your team, and they look after your customers (student experience)

Higher Education Special Interest Group Lunch

The Higher Education Special Interest Group lunch session was an excellent opportunity to network and hear insights and relevant case studies from clients within the Higher Education sector.

The panel, which consisted of Barry Mahoney, Senior Consultant, University of the Sunshine Coast, Blanca Cooke, Project Manager, Catholic Education Network and Lesley Parker, Senior Project Manager, Flinders University, discussed best practices within the Higher Education sector and transforming the campus experience for students, faculty and staff.

Again, it was a great event that confirmed a lot of what we are seeing in the sector and what we are telling our Higher Education Providers too. We work closely with Service Now and their technology partners to make their implementations more successful.

If you’re considering an automation system implementation, please reach out as I’d love to share some of these learnings to help yours be as successful as possible. You can connect with me on LinkedIn here.