Case Study

Assessing and Improving ServiceNow CMDB Utilization

A well-known asset management firm revolutionizes its configuration management process.

A reputed US-based asset management company transforms its IT operations management by implementing well-configured ServiceNow tools and optimizing its ServiceNow CMDB.
Industry & Region: Financial Services, USA

Technology Stack: ServiceNow CMDB, ServiceNow Discovery Cloud Operations Platform: Cisco Intersight, Virtual Private Network: Palo Alto, System Management Software: Microsoft SCCM, Unified Endpoint Management Tool: VMWare Workspace ONE, ServiceNow Service Graph Connectors, ServiceNow Agent Client Collector, ServiceNow Identification and Reconciliation Engine (IRE), ServiceNow CMDB Health Dashboard

Client Overview
Our client is a leading global asset management company in the US. They manage investments of individuals and institutions across various markets, including credit, real estate, and private equity, and provide flexible funding to grow their businesses. By consistently investing in modern technologies, they aim to deliver exceptional value to customers.
Business Challenge
The asset management company was using the ServiceNow Configuration Management Database (CMDB) to store information about its Configuration Items (CIs) or IT resources, such as servers, applications, network devices, and other essential IT components.
However, the client struggled to ensure efficient management of configurations due to the absence of a proper solution for verifying data accuracy and consistency in the CMDB. Besides, the misconfiguration of the ServiceNow Discovery tool made it difficult to retire defunct & unusable CIs and identify incomplete & duplicate CI records. Moreover, it was not gathering data from Layer 2 devices connected to a switch (e.g., Ethernet Switches, Bridges, Network Interface Cards, etc.).
The company was also using various third-party tools, such as Cisco Intersight, Palo Alto, Microsoft SCCM, and VMWare Workspace ONE, and a few more, that weren’t integrated with the CMDB properly, adding more complexity to the process.
All this led to poor IT operations management, which increased operational risks and resulted in ineffective service delivery.
Solution Offered
Realizing they had to rethink their CMDB management and maintenance practices, the client started seeking a ServiceNow partner to resolve their problem and eventually partnered with KANINI.
Our ServiceNow experts kickstarted the project by conducting a requirement-gathering workshop and analyzing the company’s ServiceNow CMDB along with the data population methods. After identifying the problems, we executed the 3 main tasks:
1. Optimizing CI Discovery
  • Migrated ServiceNow Discovery from CAPI-based discovery to pattern-based discovery.
  • Leveraged Service Graph Connectors to populate data from the third-party tools into the ServiceNow CMDB, ensuring it had in-depth configuration details of various IT resources (e.g., workstations, handheld devices, servers, etc.)
  • Installed ServiceNow Agent Client Collector to expand the discovery of IT resources further.
  • Fixed the discovery schedules, ensuring timely updates in the ServiceNow CMDB.
  • Reviewed and fixed the Layer 2 discovery patterns to ensure the successful identification of all the devices.
  • Established a process to exclude retired CIs from the discovery process, preventing false positives.
2. Maintaining Data Integrity and Quality
  • Enhanced the efficiency of identifying and reconciling CIs by using the ServiceNow Identification and Reconciliation Engine (IRE).
  • Set up access control and security measures, which included establishing a structured workflow for change approval, providing full update authority only to Admins and CI Class Managers, and so on.
    • Deployed the ServiceNow CMDB Health Dashboard and configured the required KPIs–Correctness, Completeness, and Compliance–to ensure the health of the CMDB.
3. Testing the CMDB
  • Conducted an extensive code review process and performed functional testing.
  • Incorporated the feedback gathered through User Acceptance Testing (UAT) and fixed bugs, aligning the CMDB with the organization’s business processes.
With all these measures in place, the company now has a complete and accurate CMDB that is contributing to effective and efficient IT operations management.
Considering the success of this project, the asset management company has planned to implement more tools, such as ServiceNow Service Mapping, ServiceNow Certificate Management, and ServiceNow Firewall Audit, with KANINI’s assistance in the future. This would help them build a service-aware CMDB that provides insights into service dependencies, enabling them to manage not just IT configurations but also business services effectively.
Value Delivered
  • Enhanced data accuracy and consistency within the ServiceNow CMDB and improved its reliability.
  • Provided a holistic view of the IT environment, streamlining IT operations management.
  • Reduced the risk of security threats, financial losses, and regulatory non-compliance.
  • Established an efficient change management process to ensure smooth business operations.
  • Enabled effective decision-making regarding IT investments.
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Assessing and Improving ServiceNow CMDB Utilization