By Stephanie Comardelle

Your legacy platform contract just ended and your company is finally switching to the ServiceNow platform. There’s a sense of urgency for various departmental siloes to get up and running quickly, each with their own custom needs.


With all that enthusiasm, there is a natural tendency to run really fast out of the gate. However, it’s better to take a deep breath and set your company up for success in the long term with Governance.  If you get the right people and processes in place, you will realize the full cost savings, automation and improved business processes the ServiceNow platform brings.


What is Governance?

Governance is a set of organizational capabilities that facilitate the realization of a business objective or outcome using best practices of Service Management and ServiceNow platform management. It ensures discipline, so that the decisions you make will benefit the company across the enterprise. 


According to Michael Brown, ServiceNow Delivery Manager, “The first two things I help a customer determine are their big picture success plan, and who is going to make decisions to manage demand.  If these decisions are made by admins in a support organization, you’re just not going to get the rigor you would get with a development team process and mentality.” (Watch video interview)


Initial implementation process owners often go back to their original roles after the launch. Without a qualified leader officially in charge of governing, the siloes will start doing their own thing. And before you know it, you’ve got a Wild West shootout with no sheriff to keep the peace. It is best to assign a specific leader upfront and empower them to make decisions. 


Establishing a Governance Board

ServiceNow enables rapid application development, but just because you can… doesn’t always mean you should. A carefully selected, cross-functional board or steering committee will help you avoid responding randomly to improvement requests or building applications while in production.


A Governance Board is not the same thing as a Center of Excellence. An effective Board crosses company functions and typically includes an executive sponsor, technical governor (architect), platform owner, change manager, demand manager and release manager.


In our implementation engagements we ask customers to identify qualified individuals for these roles and then help them establish good communication, status and steering decisions.  After the initial implementation ends, the long-term success for an organization comes from continued efforts to strategically govern, measure, improve and expand the usage of the platform.


Silo Consequences

One of our enterprise customers in the entertainment industry established a governance process for every new application request that starts with the question “Why CAN’T we do this on ServiceNow?”


Many departments throughout the enterprise have similar needs, like incident management, request management and change management. Without alignment to a Governance roadmap, you can easily end up with time-wasting redundancies and inaccessible data that could be helping you impact your business outcomes.


Some large enterprises, especially those built through acquisitions, often have internal groups that aren’t talking to each other effectively. Without Governance, this can result in multiple instances of the platform that could have been consolidated into one that is vastly more powerful. One of the key values of the platform is having a single system of record.


How ServiceNow can help

ServiceNow works with customer champions to establish a Governance model that ensures business results. We help align their roadmap to their organizational goals and vision, and develop a framework that can scale as the organization grows, all while holding platform owners and admins accountable.


According to Stephanie Comardelle, Core Services Practice Leader, “We help establish a comprehensive Governance model that not only focuses on technical platform governance, but also

  • Strategy Governance
  • Portfolio Governance
  • Convergence Governance, focused on innovation, enterprise compliance, data and business intelligence.”


Getting a strong start with governance will ensure that customers maximize their ServiceNow platform as they scale, and that silo development is kept in check. It’s absolutely worth the time, and will make a big difference to the bottom line.


We’d love to hear from you. Watch this brief video interview with Stephanie and Michael, and visit for more details.


Additional Questions?

Questions regarding the program or materials contact your Services account team or email us here.