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Knowledge is power, and with great power comes great responsibility. ServiceNow offers a centralized repository for knowledge articles and content that empowers both users and support teams of the tool, but the value depends on ongoing feedback between both parties. The Employee Service Center not only provides a centralized location for requesting a form of service across multiple departments and teams but it also can be utilized to offer self-service guidance.

The University of Maryland leveraged Virtual Agent – an intelligent chatbot targeted to assist, and in some cases, a resolution to common questions and requests – to provide quick assistance and recommended informative content such as knowledge articles, which contributed to a reduced incident volume and Service Desk call volume by almost 25%, as users were able to self-resolve their inquiries.[1]

The key to knowledge is effectiveness; by adopting the “empowering others” mindset; what we can share with others gives them the ability to resolve issues, have a better experience using a tool or service, or perform work.

ServiceNow provides support fulfillment routing in a user-friendly manner to help users get their requests and issues resolved… but it also takes it a step further by housing a library to be utilized for quick assistance and potential immediate resolution – this could be around topics such as guidance for tools or troubleshooting tips – both contribute to an enhanced customer experience.

Think about when rolling out a new tool, it’s important to provide users context and direction to provide guidance and reduce frustration – both contributing to a good first impression. Consider the basics and anticipated questions that can be answered through knowledge articles:

  • What is the purpose of this tool? How can I request access to it? How do I log in?
  • What does basic navigation look like? What are the most frequent functionalities and the steps to follow?
  • If I need technical support, how do I request it?

By publishing and sharing knowledge articles ahead of time, it will help the Go-Live and user adoption of the tool go much smoother, contributing to enhanced buy-in, as well as the reinforcement of the benefit of knowledge content.

A common inquiry to support teams is when a user needs to reset a password – whether it’s a cadenced maintenance activity or a case of forgotten credentials, it’s a great example of a process to hand over to users for faster resolution. Step by step instructions with images walking the user through, can not only deflect a one-time ticket but impart the confidence that if the need arises again, they have the knowledge to resolve their password activity needs.

The confidence gained from self-service abilities can then attribute to the excitement of sharing with others – therefore spreading the wealth and growing the “empower with knowledge” mindset. The more capabilities we can provide as self-service solutions resulting in decreased resolution time, the more positive the overall user experience with tools and services.

Not only do knowledge articles allow for an enhanced experience for end-users by providing assistance and potentially deflecting ticket submissions, but they can also be utilized to increase efficiency within support teams themselves by standardizing processes and work, and documenting institutional knowledge to reduce the risk of single points of success.

Documenting processes, solutions, and standard work can help teams streamline onboarding, maintenance activities, and error resolution. Consider when a new employee joins a team – they have a lot to get up to speed on, regarding how to perform work in this new space that also may include a new tool to learn. Having a repository that is effective and informational will assist them with getting acclimated, therefore expediting their valuable contributions to the team. This same thought process can be utilized for troubleshooting and common fixes, to provide consistency and efficiency when working through end-user submissions. Cultivating a shared space for support teams to help each other provide solutions can positively impact the customer and support user experience.

Sometimes, a recurring incident is a result of an underlying problem – multiple users are experiencing the same error therefore queues receive common tickets based on the same core problem. Whether it’s proactive or reactive, it’s important to communicate to users that this issue is known and being worked on, and what the workaround is, if there is one. Known Error articles are a type of knowledge article that is tied to a problem, that uses a template to provide information around the issue, cause, impact, and workaround. This will potentially help deflect further redundant incident tickets, as well as assist users by limiting the disruption the problem is causing.

ServiceNow also offers key functionalities for leveraging knowledge articles to further empower support teams and end-users. Embedded Help can provide quick tips on various pages within the tool, including links to solutions around common questions and issues, as well as general basics and the purpose of the form. Agent Assist is another example, that displays related knowledge articles and catalog items in real-time, as users begin to document their issues – which can, in turn, be a final opportunity for deflection before submission.

For optimal efficiency, knowledge articles should be living artifacts, always ensuring accuracy and clarity for the highest benefit of use. To this point, ongoing feedback is crucial. Knowledge articles have a great mechanism for receiving feedback. Users can give them a star rating, mark if they were helpful or not, and add comments. This piece is important in ensuring that content not only makes sense to support teams but also to those that are brand new to the tools and services the content is pertaining to. By giving users the ability to add value to the conversation from the receiving end, it allows their voice to be heard in striving to provide quality content.

The power of knowledge lies within the empowerment of abilities in the hands of users to increase their satisfaction with tools and experiences, and that power comes from both sides of the support structure.

  • Do you reside on the support team side of the conversation? Try and identify topics of opportunity that could be helpful for yourself and team members and begin building your library of knowledge. Encourage your teammates to do the same!
  • Are you an end-user that utilizes ServiceNow for requesting assistance? Be sure to check out if there are knowledge articles available – you may be able to resolve your questions without having to wait for a support team response! And remember, if you find content that is super helpful or instead could be improved – your feedback matters as it will help the experience for others; leave comments and ratings so that support teams can ensure knowledge is of the best standard for users just like you.

If you are a healthcare organization and are interested in implementing ServiceNow to take advantage of these great tools, such as knowledge articles, in your organization, contact the Optimum Healthcare IT ServiceNow team to set up an introductory call.

[1] Source: https://www.servicenow.com/customers/university-of-maryland.html

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Kristi Compton

ServiceNow Practice – Manager of Resourcing & Service Delivery

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