Most eBonding efforts—in which two separate IT service management systems are bonded together—involve just a small portion of the data relevant to those systems. Usually, a limited-scale integration, often with data flowing in only one direction, is enough to help facilitate an organization’s short-term operation of both a legacy system and its replacement.
However, sometimes an organization has specific needs that require a deeper and more demanding integration. That was the situation for a FORTUNE 500 company we assisted with a major project to consolidate IT service management onto a single global platform. Because of the scale of the company and the complexity of the transition, a “big bang” migration simply wasn’t an option for our client. The legacy platform absolutely had to keep running.
Rather, in order to successfully migrate from the existing ITSM platform from Service Manager (on-premises) to ServiceNow, our client needed to plan for approximately one year of running both
systems. Specifically, approximately 5,000 analyst-users in the company’s IT department would switch over to ServiceNow to manage incidents. But those incidents and other requests needed to be accommodated in arriving from Service Manager—which still served the company’s 130,000 users.
Our role included both:
- Designing a new ServiceNow environment that would eventually be rolled out to replace Service Manager as the end-user-facing platform—duplicating the existing user interface as much as possible; and
- Design and deploy a fully-functional, bi-directional eBonding solution that would enable end-users to submit requests in Service Manager, deliver those requests to ServiceNow, enable IT users to manage them in ServiceNow, and then deliver updated information back to ServiceManager to update end users as incidents were addressed.
The full-scale integration between Service Manager and ServiceNow had to update records within just five minutes. This meant all work-item data and a subset of CMDB data had to be managed for transitions in both directions.
We developed the solution over approximately six months, applying Azure Automation and working with APIs for both Service Manager and ServiceNow.
We used a series of Azure Automation runbooks and other Azure functions. We monitored the integration using OMS and Application Insights.
While this integration was technically demanding, it had immediate economic benefits. Our client was able to transition its IT users over to ServiceNow, which meant eliminating licensing costs for the software powering the front-end interface for IT users who previously used Service Manager. It also meant our client could eliminate expenses relating to the servers that ran that software.
The large-scale integration between Service Manager and ServiceNow was as critical to the overall project as it was technically complex. We were pleased to provide the architecture and engineering in order to make the project a success.