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In an exclusive interview with Telecom Review, Rohit Batra, vice president and head of telecommunications, media and technology products at ServiceNow, shares his company’s efforts in helping businesses create value and winning innovation.

Please tell us a bit about what ServiceNow offers.

The Now Platform is the platform for digital business, helping organizations create great experiences, drive new business value and innovate to compete. While there are vendors on the market that offer point solutions for specific challenges, we offer a single, unified platform for all enterprise digital workflows, allowing customers to maximize the value of existing technology investments and connect siloed systems, departments and processes. That’s a key differentiator.

Key solutions for IT, employee, customer and creator workflows include:

  • Technology workflows: Helps companies accelerate digital transformation with cost-efficient, secure and agile technology. The suite includes IT Service Management (ITSM), IT Operations Management (ITOM), IT Business Management, IT Asset Management, DevOps, Security Operations, Governance, Risk & Compliance (GRC) and more.
  • Employee workflows: Helps deliver a unified employee experience by connecting people, processes and technology. The suite includes HR Service Delivery, Workplace Service Delivery, Legal Service Delivery and more. Customers can also leverage Employee Center, our unified portal to keep employees engaged, productive and informed.
  • Creator Workflows: Gives customers the ability to build connected cross-enterprise workflow apps fast with low-code and hyperautomation. The suite includes App Engine, Integration Hub and more.
  • Customer and Industry workflows: Helps deliver frictionless customer experiences that drive long-term loyalty with connected digital workflows that automate work across departments. Our products include Customer Service Management, Order Management, Field Service Management and more. And we’ve expanded to support industries, including financial services, healthcare and telecommunications, working in concert with customers and partners.

Our strategy is to verticalize our product portfolio for industries such as telecom, media and entertainment, financial services, healthcare, manufacturing and the public sector. The verticalization effort includes building industry-specific data models, APIs and integration and core functionalities purpose-built to address industry challenges. Our latest innovation, Telecom Network Inventory, is a perfect example of our strategy and how we worked with a key customer in the telecommunications sector, AT&T, to design and launch a solution that will enable communications service providers (CSPs) worldwide to manage 5G and fiber network inventory.

From your perspective, what are the major challenges for CSPs globally, and how is ServiceNow addressing those issues?

Telecom networks are complex. They include miles of cable and fiber and millions of pieces of equipment. Managing these large networks has historically required labor-intensive, manual processes that are spread across many different apps and systems that don’t talk to one another. The data is disconnected, so CSPs don’t have a single view of how their inventory is running. 

To thrive in today’s complex digital economy, CSPs need an accurate and consolidated view of their entire network inventory to maximize network investments, manage orders, address issues quickly and improve customer experiences. ServiceNow is helping to solve this with Telecom Network Inventory.

Telecom Network Inventory extends the Now Platform to help CSPs manage telecom applications and equipment with greater accuracy, allowing them to better automate their business and enable real-time, customized service delivery at scale, on a single platform. This reduces the burden on CSPs, so they can expand and manage networks with confidence, assurance and speed. 

You mentioned that ServiceNow and AT&T have recently worked together to launch a global telecom product — the Telecom Network Inventory. Can you please tell us a little more about why ServiceNow launched this solution and what are its benefits?

Telecom Network Inventory takes a process-centric approach to network inventory, which has never been done before and solves a critical challenge. 5G is fueling the demand for new services, and the telecommunications industry is moving towards real-time customer service experiences. But CSPs face many challenges, including exponential amounts of network inventory, multiple inventory systems that don’t talk to one another, long development cycles and disconnected business processes.

CSPs need accurate inventory data to be in sync with the network if they want to automate to compete.  With inventory data streamlined on a single platform, CSPs can maximize network investment, quickly deploy services and redefine the service experience.

Telecom Network Inventory helps to address these needs by providing a single platform that connects systems to maximize network investments, manage orders, improve customer service experiences and enable business agility. Key benefits include:

  • Automate service lifecycle – deliver services faster and address issues proactively with accurate inventory
  • Consolidate inventory – consolidate inventory data to easily and quickly manage resources and services
  • Optimize resources – maximize network investments with reliable resource information

And all of this is done with a process-centric approach – not just keeping data for the sake of it, but managing the entire lifecycle of inventory from network build and design and processes associated with procurement and depreciation of the right assets in financial systems, to maintaining the accuracy of inventory and integrated order fulfillment, service assurance and network ticketing workflows.

Please take us through the future roadmap for ServiceNow services and products for the telco sector. Which are your primary target markets?

Our primary strategy is to help our telecom customers with end-to-end service lifecycle automation. From a focus perspective this translates into the following domains:

  • Plan and build – helping our customers define and build out across their physical, logical and virtual networks.
  • Schedule – delivering optimized routing and planning of technicians for installation, servicing and repair.
  • Service Delivery – end to end technical catalog management and order orchestration for service fulfillment.
  • Service Management – which includes delivering a frictionless experience across any channel with integrated workflows for proactive care. Capabilities here also ensure that employees are equipped with the right skills and onboarding and offboarding tasks to ensure they are most effective on day one.
  • Service assurance – capabilities that deliver workflows for automation and remediation, ticketing and SLA management across services.

The ServiceNow Platform is applicable to each industry and every persona within the enterprise, and we’re planning to expand across the world. ServiceNow has 72 offices in 31 countries across the globe. We continue to serve our 7,700+ enterprise customers with 29 data centers spanning five continents. 

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