Making Customizations to ServiceNow is Like Throwing Pebbles into a Bag
Sooner or Later That Bag is Going to Break
As humans, we’re never satisfied, we always like to change things. You just purchased a new house and the first thing you do is what? Update the kitchen. Paint the bedrooms. Turn the garden into a desert landscape (just came back from a trip to Phoenix and those front lawns were amazing!).
The same is true for ServiceNow. Your ServiceNow environment is probably just fine, but like your front lawn, everyone has an opinion, and everyone works differently. I don’t work the same way my ServiceNow compatriots, Robert, Edward, or others do, and they probably have their ServiceNow environments set up for the way they work (no matter how weird or wrong I may find it!).
Customizations Aren’t Necessarily Bad—But They Lead to More Technical Debt (or Pebbles)
Don’t get me wrong, we’re not arguing against making customizations, you just might not need to. But, you’ve got to think: “What technical debt am I accruing as I make these customizations?”
With ServiceNow, you can free yourself from technical debt, the additional work you incur because you chose a quicker, easier way to solve a problem rather than the better approach that may take a little longer and be more expensive upfront—until you realize how much more you have to rework when you upgrade!
In general, the more customizations you have, the more complicated your upgrades will become. Another way to look at your technical debt is to think that with every customization:
- You’re accruing more maintenance work, which may be fine if you have enough bodies, but not if you don’t
- You run this risk of changing something foundational throughout the entire ServiceNow system
- Also, as with anything that’s complicated, there is no one right way, but there are a lot of wrong ways
- In general, you’re simply adding more (and unnecessary) complication to an already complex system
And You Ask Yourself Again, Do I Really Need to Customize ServiceNow?
I’ll just come out and say it (no matter how strange it may sound): Not necessarily.
Nowadays, you get so much more added value and flexibility from your ServiceNow instance, you may not even need to make customizations. For instance, when you’re trying to protect against vulnerabilities in your organization, you don’t just get a single, monolithic security app, you get companion apps to go with it.
Think of Norton Antivirus 360: The main app is antivirus of course, but you also get a firewall, VPN, password manager, cloud storage space, and dark web monitoring—all for one (somewhat low) price. And do you even use it all? (I use the firewall, VPN, and password manager, but nothing else, myself.)
Likewise, you get a lot more value from your ServiceNow instance because there’s so much in there—important apps that may be hidden from you in plain sight. So if it’s vulnerability protection you’re looking for, you’ll also get companion apps to help you protect your ServiceNow environment as well as your customers, including:
- Security Incident Response
Quickly prioritize and respond to security threats using workflows and automation
- Vulnerability Response
Efficiently prioritize and respond to vulnerabilities based on business impact
- Configuration Compliance
Identify, prioritize, and remediate misconfigured software
- Threat Intelligence
Add context and threat analysis to security incidents.
- Performance Analytics for Security Operations
Create real-time dashboards and reports with 50+ security-specific KPIs
- Event Management
Collect and process events for incident creation
- DLP Incident Response
Integrate SecOps with your data loss prevention tool to reduce exposure
Upgrades are Important for Keeping the System Healthy and Up-to-date
If getting out of technical debt is a priority, then you really need to weigh the cost/benefit of doing these ad-hoc customizations. Think of it this way: Every time you do a customization, you throw a pebble in a bag. At a certain point, all those pebbles are going to make that bag too heavy and cause it to break. Some things to think about every time you make a customization include:
- Incurring more technical debt for your organization to absorb
- Making it harder to upgrade if you’re worried about breaking your customization
- Changing one field has the potential to affect the whole system
- Risking added technical debt when you clean up ad-hoc customizations that may break its functionality?
The best thing you can do to have a smooth ServiceNow upgrade is to minimize your tech debt.
Check out the screenshot below and see what can come with your ServiceNow bundled vulnerability options at volume solutions pricing where you can group vulnerabilities together at that deliver greater impact against attack.
Thankfully, Your Milestone Team are Experts at Avoiding Technical Debt
Milestone is your partner when you need to get the right upgrades. And one of the best things we can help you get out of—or at least minimize—is your technical debt with the right upgrades.
For instance, if we find you have a ServiceNow instance with a serious vulnerability, we’ll already have information on it, and use ServiceNow Vulnerability Response to ascertain the risks and provide a solution. You can do this same thing with any ServiceNow app.
The great thing is you don’t have to add a new headcount (though in this environment, you can maybe get talent for cheap?). We deliver consulting services to determine the upgrade you need. The great thing is you get a great, stellar business outcome without the exasperation of managing headcount and hiring/letting go.
Responding to Vulnerability Threats Quickly Enough? ActivateVR can help.