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Find out how ServiceNow products can provide a service model that can assist users in identifying the root cause of difficulties they encounter as well as resolving issues via self-service.

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Leading fashion retailer gains full transparency into their operational footprint

The client: 

Unifii were engaged by a leading fashion retailer to help consolidate and enhance their internal IT processes. The brand operates globally, focusing on the high street rather than online services, employing nearly 100,000 people in total.  

This major presence on the high street has continued to grow their business, with a particular focus on delivering a continued value and excellence to their customers.

The challenge and main pain points: 

Prior to working with ServiceNow and Unifii, the customer’s IT asset management processes were mainly manual, with heavy use of spreadsheets and multiple asset management tools. The responsibility for managing assets was often sitting between themselves and their suppliers, which lead to a lack of visibility and control of their data. The team were working with no automation either: this meant an increased risk of error, poor communication between departments and wasted time spent manually reporting. This needed to be addressed urgently, as the size of the company and the focus on the high street made it imperative to establish consolidated processes and a single source of truth.

Being a large high street focused brand meant that they were dealing with 390 locations, five data centres, more than 10,000 infrastructure-related hardware assets, and over 500 different types of software. These figures are indicative of the immense responsibility for Unifii on this project. 

The customer needed a single tool capable of collecting and managing all types of hardware and software assets, and making the information available to technology functions so that it could support a multitude of often critical business decisions. 

Unifii were engaged to transform the customer’s IT Asset Management (ITAM) and IT Operations Management (ITOM) capabilities. 

In terms of ITAM, the customer’s main needs were to be able to: 

  • Manage and maintain all current and future IT asset information, which included a single source CMDB (Configuration Management Database) 

  • Develop and design thorough, robust processes to support the ITAM Service 

  • Establish a team to run the service once fully implemented 

For ITOM, the main needs were: 

  • An automatically populated CMDB, with quality data providing real-time visibility into their infrastructure and services 

  • Reduce and prevent service outages by understanding business service relationships 

  • Maintain service health and optimise cloud spend

ServiceNow was the stand out option as the best fit for our business needs during our RFP process. Although our immediate need was to deliver an IT Asset Management service with associated tooling and processes, we recognised ServiceNow as the platform that would best fit us strategically as we continued to mature and transform our service management services.

Service Assurance Manager for the brand

What we did: 

Unifii implemented ServiceNow’s IT Asset Management module for both Hardware Asset Management (HAM) and Software Asset Management (SAM), as well as the IT Operations Management suite of processes which focused on infrastructure discovery and business service mapping. In close collaboration with the customer, we delivered a CMDB with configuration management and hardware asset management processes as a single phase of work, as these are often highly dependent on each other. This allowed for data cleansing to be done only once for both processes and ensure quicker time to value for the customer as a result. Unifii then leveraged these processes to deliver a scalable and robust Software Asset Management process, and used the quality data in the CMDB to provide real-time visibility of the true state of play regarding licence compliance across their software estate.  

Unifii designed, configured, and deployed various Discovery probes and patterns on several configuration item classes, which included Windows devices, servers, network switches and firewalls, along with AV devices and telephony assets. These capabilities continue to update the Configuration Items (CIs) in the customer’s CMDB in a timely fashion, ensuring real-time up-to-date information about their infrastructure and the relationships between its different elements. 

We also worked closely with the retailer’s third-party partners to validate the captured information and, where required, made configuration changes as per specified requirements. The Unifii team configured multiple Discovery patterns to accommodate any additional requirements around bespoke infrastructure or innovative configurations on systems. 

To further help deliver quicker time to value, Unifii carried out integrations with the following systems to populate hardware and software information:  

  • Microsoft SCCM 

  • Workspace ONE 

  • OneStop 

  • Aruba

  • EPOS supplier asset register

Benefits realised:

The customer has seen huge performance and efficiency improvements since implementing ServiceNow ITAM and ITOM. These include: 

  • No more reliance on manual Excel reporting thanks to the on-demand reporting capabilities of ServiceNow 

  • Single point of entry for inventory, removing the risk of duplicating assets and workloads 

  • Complete visibility of the CMDB, allowing them to manage their EUC and infrastructure estate more effectively 

  • New transparency on how their IT is being utilised to ensure maximum ROI 

  • Reduction of re-work now that all information is captured in one place 

  • Full visibility of software licence consumption, expenditure, and effective licence positions for key vendors 

  • Comprehensive dashboards showing critical information and statistics at a glance, allowing quick resolution of issues, forward planning and the ability to monitor trends over time 

  • Unifii have recently upgraded the customer to the Rome release; already, they can take advantage of additional product capabilities without the need for any additional configuration 

 

One of the main advantages of running infrastructure discovery with ServiceNow Discovery is that it’s native to the platform, meaning no further integrations are needed before benefits can be realised. This has given the retailer a total view of their operations footprint across on-premises data centres, delivery depots, offices, and cloud providers. 

Another area that has seen significant improvement is the customer’s application services. The service maps that Unifii have created through ServiceNow Service Mapping provide views of these components that are easy to understand, and make sure all stakeholders (whether business or technical) are always on the same page. In turn, this has allowed the customer to make informed decisions quickly, diagnosing problems and prioritising them based on business impact.

Unifii’s flexibility was key to this relationship, understanding our requirement for a service and not just an application, offering advice on best practise and helping us adapt this to our specific needs. Although deliverables were clearly outlined, Unifii were accommodating throughout, appreciating the learning and growing journey we were on. As we continue to transform our ways of working, we look forward to continuing our working relationship with Unifii.

Service Assurance Manager

The retailer is planning the migration of their IT Service Management (ITSM) processes to ServiceNow to further leverage the benefits of their new CMDB and Asset Repository. This provides a rare but fantastic opportunity for the customer as traditionally organisations will migrate ITSM before addressing CMDB and Asset Management as a second phase. Unifii are also providing a platform management service that helps train and develop internal capabilities for the customer, to ensure they can be self-sufficient in the future if required.

For more information and a free consultation on how Unifii could potentially help your business, please contact one of the team here

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