Sometimes, the past is prologue. It just takes a while for current reality to catch up with the foreshadowing.
Take IT innovations that have transformed how business is done. By my lights, three of the first of these began transforming business in the 1400s.
- Adoption of Arabic numerals made arithmetic possible, transforming merchants and trade in. (Ever try adding and subtracting Roman numerals? Not what you'd call agile.)
- The invention of double-entry bookkeeping (in Italy or Croatia, depending on what and whom you believe) made accurate accounting, inventory assessment and business performance analysis possible for the first time. (Once you can count and record what you have, what you've sold and what you've bought, you can know what's making you money, what's costing you money, and how much.)
- The first printing presses made it possible to share information consistently. Including, for example, how double-entry bookkeeping works. (Italian Luca Pacioli's treatise on the subject, while not the first recorded description of the technique, was arguably one of the first "business best-sellers.")
Taken together, these transformative innovations enabled something businesses never had before: a single, consistent, shareable version of the truth based on a single system of record. Something without which modern business would be impossible, or at least very different.
Today, some six centuries later, business IT has reached a similarly transformative evolutionary precipice. And like their earlier counterparts, many of today's IT innovations are focused squarely on transforming and improving how every modern enterprise does business.
The most exciting news about this where ServiceNow is concerned comes from ServiceNow customers. As demonstrated amply and ably by the examples in the ServiceNow Custom Application Showcase, ServiceNow customers are extending the value of ServiceNow well beyond IT in innovative, transformative ways. And these efforts are extending the lessons learned and successes achieved by IT across all types of enterprises, enabling consistently effective and agile shared services and service relationship management.
At the heart of these benefits? The ability to use ServiceNow to create a single system of record that enables a single, consistent, shareable version of the truth, within and beyond IT.
If you are or know of a ServiceNow customer who is delivering transformative innovation with the ServiceNow CreateNow Development Suite and the ServiceNow Service Automation Platform, now is the time to seek recognition of those efforts. How? By submitting a description of the relevant work for consideration during this year's Innovation of the Year Awards. Finalists will be featured at Knowledge14 during the keynote address from Fred Luddy, ServiceNow Founder and Chief Product Officer (and "the Steve Jobs of ITSM").
The deadline for Innovation of the Year entries is March 31, so if you haven't done so already, get yourself or your colleague signed up ASAP. (And if you or your colleague haven't yet registered for Knowledge14, "early bird" discount pricing ends at 11:59 p.m. US Pacific time on February 1, so get on it! (Then, please take my poll on the business value of your latest ServiceNow custom app, and stay tuned for future commentary from me on the results. Thanks in advance!)