Developers are the backbone of the software development process and have a significant role to play in an organization’s growth and success. Therefore, it becomes vital for enterprises to empower their developers with the latest tools and technology features that improve their productivity, save cost, and enhance ROI – all to meet the larger organizational goals.
For ServiceNow users, enabling the developers is easier as the cloud-based workflow automation platform introduces periodic upgrades to its applications that are specifically designed keeping in mind the evolving trends in the software market. The latest Utah Release for instance includes a range of new features and enhancements that ServiceNow has added to its developer-focused applications.
In this blog post, we have explored each of these enhancements in more detail to give you a perspective of how these are a great value addition to the various software development processes.
Highlights of ServiceNow Utah Release – For Developers & Admins
1) Flow Designer & Process Automation Designer
Flow Designer and Process Automation Designer are applications that provide a low-code way for developers to automate tasks on their ServiceNow platform, thereby improving their efficiency. The following are some of the significant enhancements made to both applications:
a) Flow Designer Enhancements
The ServiceNow Utah release enables workflow developers to get insights into their action usage and the active status across flows (a set of activities defined to accomplish a task) and subflows (flows within a larger flow). They also get a diagram view of the different stages of a particular flow. This helps them easily understand the overall structure of a workflow and the order in which flow actions are going to be executed.
Talking of flow executions, before the update, flows were executed based on a first-in, first-out basis. But with Utah, developers can now set priorities for their flows, and the platform executes them accordingly.
b) Process Automation Designer Enhancements
The enhanced version of the Process Automation Designer, which is used for more complex enterprise-level workflows in combination with Flow Designer, now allows users to add optional activities to their workflows (certain activities can be added anywhere in the flow while some can only be added to a specific part of the flow).
2) App Engine
App Engine, a low-code tool that allows users to build custom applications faster, includes applications such as Table Builder, Workspace Builder (a new application introduced in the Utah release), and App Engine Management Center. All these applications have been enhanced in the ServiceNow Utah release in the following ways:
a) Table Builder
The Table Builder that allows users to create and manage database tables on the platform now allows developers to easily and quickly choose their preferred tables from a dropdown menu. These table items in the dropdown are displayed along with their descriptions for easy identification and selection.
Additionally, the schema view in table builder enables developers to comprehensively view tables and their related tables on the ServiceNow platform.
b) Workspace Builder
The “Workspace Builder” in the app engine is a new feature that allows developers/users to create, manage, and preview workspaces without writing any code. However, developers may not be able to edit previously built workspaces.
c) App Engine Management Center (AEMC)
The App Engine Management Center (AEMC), which provides a dashboard to allow users to view the lifecycle of the application development process, has been upgraded too. Managers/administrators can now easily understand the time spent by every team member on application development activities and take action accordingly.
3) Automation Engine
Automation Engine–the combination of Robotic Process Automation (RPA) Hub, Document Intelligence, IntegrationHub, and Automation Center–also has some new features added in the ServiceNow Utah release.
a) Robotic Process Automation (RPA) Hub
The ServiceNow RPA Hub, which allows developers and users to manage and control the software bots that are utilized to automate repetitive tasks from a centralized dashboard, is now available in Personal Developer Instances (PDIs).
A “Recorder” feature has also been added to enable developers to record their tasks on the platform and create automated workflows. They also get access to an “Auto-retry” option where failed tasks in the list of work items on the platform are automatically re-attempted.
b) Document Intelligence Application
The ServiceNow Document Intelligence application leverages Artificial Intelligence (AI) to enable organizations to analyze, process, and extract data from documents faster and more accurately. In the ServiceNow Utah release, this application has been enhanced to automatically extract information even from the extended tables and checkboxes in the documents.
c) Integration Hub
The ServiceNow Utah release improves the functionalities of the Integration Hub–an application that allows organizations to integrate ServiceNow with other applications and systems. Users can now import data easily from a CSV file. They also get access to an “Automap” feature that allows mapping source fields to table fields.
A plugin named ‘Stream Connect’, which uses “Hermes Messaging Service”(a new ServiceNow platform capability), has been added to the Integration Hub to enable users to connect “Apache Kafka” (a technology that allows storing and processing data that comes from various sources in real-time and exchanging it with other systems) with ServiceNow. This way, users/developers can leverage Apache Kafka to exchange data between their ServiceNow instance and third-party systems.
d) Automation Center
The Automation Center in ServiceNow, which was launched in the Tokyo release, provides a centralized dashboard for users to oversee automation tasks within the platform. With the ServiceNow Utah release, developers/users get access to a new feature called the ”Automation Tracker” which allows them to monitor specific automated flows created on the platform.
4) Next Experience UI Builder
To enable organizations to build and modify pages in the workspace and create an immersive portal experience for users, ServiceNow came with the Next Experience UI Builder. The following enhancements have been made to this tool in the ServiceNow Utah release:
- a) Guided Page Creation – Provides intelligent support on the platform while creating UI pages
- b) Multi-menu Filtering – Gives elaborate and accurate search results (whether under the “All” or “Favorites” menu) on the ServiceNow platform
- c) Theme Builder – Allows users to create themes that are in line with their organization’s brand guidelines on their instances
- d) History Menu – Provides a history of all the UI pages and workspaces previously opened and accessed by users
- e) Duplicating Option – Enables easy duplication of UI elements with a right-click menu
ServiceNow occupies a significant position in the market, helping organizations across industries streamline their day-to-day operations with innovative solutions. Their periodical upgrades, including the developer-focused enhancements in the Utah Release, stand as a testimony to their commitment to bringing more innovation and enabling organizations to accelerate digital transformation.
If you’d like to know more about the ServiceNow Utah release and you can leverage each of its new features in your organization, reach out to us. As a ServiceNow Premier Partner and a Managed Service Provider (MSP), we can help you with a smooth upgrade of your ServiceNow platform so that you can make the most of this latest edition.
Jeeva is a ServiceNow Technical Architect at KANINI. With 13+ years of experience in Information Technology and the ServiceNow platform, he brings in-depth expertise in designing and implementing ServiceNow solutions such as ITSM, CSM, HRSD, FSM, and more. Jeeva specializes in ensuring smooth ServiceNow upgrades and migration.