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ServiceNow powers Royal Mail multi-sourcing

As part of its £500m IT transformation, Royal Mail has deployed ServiceNow to manage new suppliers

Royal Mail has deployed ServiceNow to manage its multi-sourced IT function using the service integration and management (Siam) and information technology infrastructure library (ITIL) version 3.0 frameworks.

The cloud-based service desk tool has now been updated to the latest release and is being used to manage 27,000 desktops, several thousand Windows phones and 100,000 Windows-based personal digital assistants (PDAs).

Having moved from CSC to multi-sourced IT, Royal Mail realised it needed a Siam model to manage the key suppliers of its IT services.

These are Computacenter, for desktop management and support; Capgemini and HCL, for applications maintenance; and Atos, for datacentres. In addition, Lockheed Martin, Tata Consultancy Services, CSC and Steria work on applications development.

Dennis Rocks, portfolio director for service delivery at Royal Mail, joined the organisation at the start of the transition from a single outsourcer to multi-sourcing three years ago.

At the time, he said the main IT supplier managed all the interactions, and Royal Mail’s service delivery team of 30 was an offshoot. Now Royal Mail is at the centre of IT service delivery. "We use ServiceNow both internally and with external IT suppliers who all conform to ITIL 3," said Rocks.

Among the key requirements for delivering a multi-sourced IT service in a seamless manner was collaboration across all suppliers. “It was key for us to get Siam to work to ensure all parties worked together and understood the dependencies on each other,” Rocks said.

ServiceNow has enabled Royal Mail to enhance supplier performance by providing a central system that can be used to track and analyse what is being delivered against service-level agreements (SLAs), and includes a self-service portal that suppliers can use to resolve any incidents or queries.

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Earlier in October 2015, the organisation went through the upgrade from the "Dublin" release of ServiceNow to the "Fuji" release. According to Rocks, this was achieved with minimal downtime.

"All our suppliers tested the platform because there were significant changes in the way the screens are presented," he said.

ServiceNow is considered an enterprise resource planning (ERP) platform for IT, which Rocks said means it is capable of doing more than IT service management.

"We deployed the core capabilities – a  CMDB [configuration management database], as well as incident, problem, change, release, request fulfilment and knowledge management. There are 150,000 configurable items in the CMDB. But is also proving to be flexible as a non-IT tool," he said.

For instance, the human resources department's joining process now runs through ServiceNow, while Royal Mail is also investigating how it can be used to implement messaging tracking at depots where customers of Royal Mail re-arrange deliveries or report that a parcel has been damaged.

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