3 Lessons learned from Implementing ServiceNow CSDM

ServiceNow CSDM Game

From the introduction of CSDM until now, we have been involved in several projects where we implemented and defined ServiceNow CSDM (Common Service Data Model) together with our customers. Here’s what we learned so far.

TIP: Haven’t got a clue what CSDM is? Read our blog The Common Service Data Model explained first.

1. Scale your initiative to maximize impact and value
2. Use proven frameworks to define your services
3. Save time and effort with an end goal in mind

1. Scale your initiative to maximize impact and value

Changes to both the ServiceNow CSDM and CMDB are often considered complex and time-consuming. The key in CSDM and CMDB initiatives is not to try to do everything at once. Start with a small set of applications, CMDB classes or services.

Tackle your most critical services first, like business-critical applications or any other known infrastructure components that are currently already discovered or well-documented. Taking a step by step approach will help you get familiar with the solution and its processes and concepts.

Furthermore, prioritizing and focusing on smaller batches means you book results earlier, allowing the organization to experience the benefits of a well-structured CSDM and CMDB—creating more support for future projects. After the first batch, you can pick the next batches and gradually build out your CSDM maturity.

Are you following the best practices for a healthy CMDB?

2. Use proven frameworks to define your services

When taking a closer look at the CSDM model and its objects—Business Services, Technical Services, Business Capabilities, Applications—the concept is not new. This means there is a lot of reference material already out there, like:

The CSDM data objects occur in multiple architecture reference models, industry frameworks and taxonomies. Take these models, frameworks and taxonomies to jump-start your journey. You can easily adopt or tailor these industry standards to your business or organization.

3. Save time & effort with an end goal in mind

A clear focus on the goals and desired results will help you speed up decision making and prevent you from diverting from your path. Because when you have your priorities straight, your time and efforts are spent on things that matter the most.

For example: Say, you’re currently in the process of outsourcing parts of your IT infrastructure to a third party supplier. In the first step of CSDM (Crawl), you would gather and define the Application Services, the underlying infrastructure CIs and the relations between them.

But, when you’re planning to outsource your IT infrastructure in the near feature, these efforts would be a waste of time and resources because the underlying infrastructure will not be your responsibility anymore. Therefore, it shouldn’t be managed in the CMDB anymore either. Instead, focus your efforts on defining the right Technical Services and Technical Service Offerings (Walk). Following the CSDM guidelines, managing the outsourced services is done via Technical Service Offerings.

Need help with CSDM? We've got you covered!

We’ve already helped many customers embark on their ServiceNow CSDM journey. And we can also support you! We make sure you avoid some common pitfalls like budget overruns, missed deadlines and scope creep.

Our very own online CSDM game explains your team what CSDM is and what phases there are: Crawl, Walk, Run and Fly. After only one workshop, we extract the right services data. And most importantly, because we successfully completed the journey before, we ensure your CSDM initiative will become a success.