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Our four indicators that you should go back to baseline with ServiceNow

Josh Brown
September 10, 2020


Going back to baseline is scary. The customizations and processes you’ve implemented were costly, and even though they could prevent you from staying current, you know them well and you’re fine with their limitations.

This is how we helped a large healthcare organization hit the reset button, maximizing their ServiceNow investment.

As we mentioned earlier, going back to baseline is scary. The customizations and processes you’ve implemented were costly, and even though they could prevent you from staying current, you know them well and you’re fine with their limitations. It’s the devil you know vs. the devil you don’t. We get it. Unfortunately, effectively managing your ServiceNow platform is a key driver of organizational success, and if your ServiceNow platform is constrained, it hurts everyone. 

Recently, we helped a large healthcare organization based in the Midwest (let’s call them Big Healthcare Co.) go back to baseline with their tools and processes. After scanning and evaluating their system, we were able to show Big Healthcare Co. that their outdated custom tools and work-around processes were creating crippling inefficiencies and had generated over 1,000 hours of tech debt. We helped them go back to baseline with ServiceNow which dramatically lowered costs, boosted productivity, and reduced their tech debt by 894 hours (which is 85% better than similar ServiceNow instances) 

What’s the benefit? 

First, when considering a full reboot of ServiceNow, it’s important to understand the potential benefits to your organization. There are several possible positive outcomes but when Big Healthcare Co. went back to baseline, they saw immediate ROI in these specific areas: 

Full ServiceNow utilization 
Once their system was up to date, they could then easily introduce new ServiceNow modules into their workflow with reduced disruption to the organization.

System-wide industry standards 
It often takes greater effort to remove stale processes than it does to start over. Starting over gave Big Healthcare Co. the chance to redesign their system based on current best practices and industry benchmarks, allowing them to reap the full benefits of the ServiceNow platform. 

Reduced upgrade time 
With outdated software and customized integrations, Big Healthcare Co. never really knew what their upgrade times (or organizational downtime) would be. Eliminating unnecessary workarounds help them cut upgrade times in half.

Should you start over? 


As a ServiceNow Elite Partner, we’ve learned a few tell-tale signs that an organization needs to hit reboot with the platform. 

Here are four key things you to evaluate when considering starting over: 

1. How much tech debt do you have?

  • Can you consistently and accurately measure your tech debt?
  • Is your tech debt consistently over 200 hours? 
Big Healthcare Co. had over 1,100 hours of tech debt. Going back to baseline reduced that number to just over 100. 



2. How do your measurables stack up?

  • Can you accurately measure your configuration elements?
  • Are the amount of scripts used to configure within an acceptable range
  • Is your ratio of configuration elements to issues below the industry average of 8.5%? 

By starting fresh, Big Healthcare Co. went from over 85,000 scripts to under 25,000 and lowered their configuration elements to issues ratio to under 6%. 

3. How current is your platform?

  • Are you using the most up to date version of your modulesf?
  • Is your upgrade cycle longer than your release cycle?
  • Are there any areas of your platform that are unusable?
  • Are there any modules you wish you could use but know that implementing would be too difficult?
  • Do you have a high number of customizations that bog down your system and prevent you from updating? 

After going back to baseline, Big Healthcare Co. can now choose from the entire ServiceNow platform and easily implement new modules. 

4. Upgrade Issues

  • Is the upgrade process unnecessarily hard?
  • Do you skip warnings and upgrade anyway?
  • Do you push upgrades without testing first? 

Big Healthcare Co. no longer needs to fear regular upgrades. They can now keep their system current without the extended downtimes they experienced prior. 

Back to Baseline

Going back to baseline with ServiceNow isn’t for everyone, but for Big Healthcare Co. (and many other companies we’ve helped) it significantly improved the health of their organization. If you’ve read through this list of considerations and a couple sirens went off in your head, that’s a good thing. You’re in prime position to reboot your ServiceNow platform and capitalize on a fresh start. Interested in talking to one of our experts to hear more? Get started with our next steps.

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