May 22, 2024
ServiceNow Vancouver launches with domain-specific generative AI smarts, new automation tools


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Today, enterprise automation major ServiceNow launched the latest version of its low-code platform: Now Platform Vancouver.

Available starting today, the release brings generative AI smarts aimed at enhancing productivity across workflows, such as customer service, as well as automation tools for strengthening security and governance. It also adds comprehensive solutions for automating mission-critical processes across healthcare, finance and talent transformation.

“As we integrate generative AI across our workflows, we’re simultaneously expanding our platform capabilities with the Vancouver release to give our customers exactly what they need at this moment — new solutions that help protect their business, lower operating costs, and scale automation for end-to-end digital transformation,” CJ Desai, president and chief operating officer at ServiceNow, said in a statement.

Now Assist smarts for different domains

While ServiceNow started working on LLM capabilities years ago when it acquired Element AI, the company’s first generative AI move took shape in May 2023 when it announced Now Assist for Search, a platform offering that provided natural language responses based on a customer’s own knowledge base. It was backed by ServiceNow’s Generative AI Controller, which allowed organizations to connect their instances to both Microsoft Azure OpenAI Service and OpenAI API LLMs and featured built‑in actions for faster intelligent workflow automation. 

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Now, with the Vancouver release, the company is expanding the Now Assist family of solutions to ITSM (IT service management), CSM (customer service management), HRSD (human resource service delivery), and Creator. 

According to ServiceNow, Now Assist for ITSM and CSM provides users with summaries of incident history, cases and chats, allowing them to resolve issues faster without going back and forth on what’s happened. The features come embedded in the workflow of the platform as well as in a dedicated ‘Now Assist’ pane which can be used from within a specific case or on the dashboard to extract summaries for specific cases, complete with issue details, actions taken and resolution notes, to resolve them. 

Now Assist for CSM
Now Assist for CSM

The HRSD-centric offering taps generative AI and automation to handle previously manual HR functions like providing employees information about their leaves, payroll discrepancies or paperwork changes without needing to sift through loads of documents or previous chats. And, finally, the Creator-focused capability brings text-to-code, allowing users to convert natural language text into Javascript code suggestions (or complete code in some cases) to accelerate development on the Now Platform.

What’s interesting here is that all these capabilities are being driven by ServiceNow’s own domain-specific LLMs, designed to get the most out of the knowledge hosted on the platform while ensuring privacy. This gives users the option to either bring general-purpose OpenAI LLMs to build out their own experiences on the Now Platform or use specific ones built by the company.

“We have domain-specific LLMs because we have domain-specific data and things that we want to expose that are specific to ServiceNow. We have CMDB (configuration management database), we have the service catalog and we have a specific way of writing JavaScript code. For all of those things, when you have a domain-specific LLM, the results are better, faster, safer and cheaper,” Jon Sigler, senior vice president for the Now Platform, said in a press briefing.

In early tests with its own employees and select customers, ServiceNow witnessed 30-40% time savings when its generative AI offerings handled repetitive tasks like content creation or getting up to speed on a case. However, Amy Lokey, the company’s SVP of product experience, noted that these are early results from a technology that’s at a very nascent stage. The company plans to build on these features with the ultimate goal of improving productivity and reducing costs.

What’s more in the Vancouver release?

In addition to generative AI smarts, the Vancouver release focuses on improving the security posture of enterprises with zero trust access in ServiceNow Vault, aimed at helping them safeguard access to critical assets with authentication policies based on granular parameters like location, network, user and devices. It also expands Third Party Risk Management, which visualizes risk from outside apps/vendors, with automated inherent risk questionnaires and out-of-the-box due-diligence workflows and introduces a new Software Bill of Materials (SBOM) to easily process and ingest third-party software components inventory, gain insights into its presence within business applications, assess security risk, and drive response (if needed).

Finally, there are three new solutions to automate critical processes across healthcare, finance and talent transformation. 

For healthcare, the company said its Clinical Device Management (CDM) solution will automate the management of essential devices like MRI machines, guide staff on ordering parts and identify the best technicians for maintenance. For finance, the Accounts Payable Operations (APO) offering will automate the accounts payable process, allowing teams to digitize invoice receipt, reconciliation and payment.

Lastly, for talent transformation, the Employee Growth and Development (EGD) solution will use AI to collect, validate and continuously update employee skills data, giving leaders greater visibility and insight into workforce capabilities so they can make smarter talent decisions that fuel business growth.

All Vancouver release solutions are available starting today while the generative AI smarts will be rolling out from September 29.

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