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Around the world, the COVID-19 pandemic has caused lasting changes in how businesses embrace Digital Transformation. This has increased the need for digital workflows to be more seamless and has highlighted the importance of replacing legacy technology, but how can businesses create a business strategy that puts the customer experience at the front and center? We spoke to Ali Kaddoura, Country Manager UAE ServiceNow, about how its significant growth in the Middle East and Africa region is helping to redefine how companies achieve their customer goals.
Can you discuss some of the key challenges your customers are trying to solve today?
The current geopolitical and macroeconomic environment has forced businesses to rapidly transform digitally. In fact, today, IT innovation has gone from being a benefit to a requirement, the IT strategy has now become a core part of the broader business strategy as opposed to being a complementary element. But many businesses fail due to poorly executed digital strategies. Large organizations stuck with legacy or siled technologies face the challenge of building futuristic architectures that can keep pace with evolving business requirements.
We believe ServiceNow is well positioned to address these changes and help customers navigate these journeys.
How does ServiceNow help address these challenges? And what is your value proposition for businesses?
ServiceNow focuses on experiences and workflows. Behind every great employee and customer experience is a great workflow and when work flows naturally, great experiences follow.
So, within our platform, we help organizations break down silos and seamlessly connect their people, systems and processes with enterprise-wide digital workflows. It does this by empowering customers, employees and partners with innovative consumer-level experiences and creating a platform to accelerate time to value. Our goal is to unleash agility and unlock innovation, two key components of any Digital Transformation strategy.
Can you explain some of the key use cases for the Now Platform?
The key to achieving customer goals is having an honest and efficient workforce. But loyalty and performance are hindered by inefficient workplaces, processes and sometimes communication. If you look at the technological landscape of most organizations, you will see that every department, be it IT, finance, legal management, facilities management and HR, will have their own system of record. ServiceNow is uniquely positioned to be the one source of truth that connects all these backend systems and creates a single employee experience. As an employee, you don’t need to log into different systems for an integrated seamless workflow – with our services, an employee can go to a portal and request any service related to their work; a salary letter, legal request, an IT support ticket, or anything else that helps the employee stay productive and get their job done.
From a customer perspective, the demand for a frictionless customer experience and tangible value is increasing. For any service or product you intend to purchase, experience, efficiency, engagement, speed and time to value are the main concerns.
At ServiceNow, we break down silos and help organizations connect their customer journeys with backend systems, ensuring an efficient way of handling customer requirements. We automate and implement self-service to achieve great customer experiences that every business can monetize, regardless of their industry.
Another use case is about streamlining technology operations, as IT functions become a central part of business strategy. Here, we focus on ensuring zero downtime, predictive analysis and ensuring that the business has the right level of visibility into its IT environment. We automate these IT operations, reducing costs, CAPEX and the number of people required to manage these IT assets.
Upgrading IP assets and maintaining IP assets is an area where we pay a lot of attention. We play a key role in technology operational excellence by providing solutions such as IT Service Management, IT operations management and IT Asset Management, all integrated into one service operations platform.
How does ServiceNow stand out from its competitors?
The Now Platform is the ‘platform of platforms’ when it comes to the workflow revolution. Although there are vendors that offer solutions to specific and individual systems such as ITSM or HR service delivery, for example, ServiceNow is the only vendor on the market that offers a unified foundation for all enterprise digital workflows, allowing customers to maximize the value of existing technology. investment and connect siled systems, departments and processes.
Also, because our platform is built in the cloud, ServiceNow customers can be up and running in weeks instead of the months or years it would take a competitor. Time is a key differentiating factor for us because we are cloud-native.
Can you talk about ServiceNow’s growth in the UAE, what are some of the key sectors you operate in?
We are seeing tremendous global growth and innovation under the leadership of our CEO, Bill McDermott. At ServiceNow, we refer to the Middle East and Africa regions as ‘the land of opportunity’ and within the MEA region, we see a lot of growth in the UAE. As of December 2020 IDC META CIO DX Survey57% of CIOs consider workflow management applications a priority for the future of work and 45% prioritize improving customer journeys and these are UAE-wide statistics.
The survey also noted that 45% prioritized improving customer journeys. It’s no surprise that there is an increase in the number of companies turning to ServiceNow for help in these areas.
As a company, we are investing in this region and this is reflected in our growth. We opened our Dubai office in 2021 and have grown the team significantly over the past 18 months, tripling the number of employees in the region. Additionally, we are currently working with several businesses in the BFSI sector and several financial organizations. We continue to serve banks, oil and gas, energy and utilities companies, healthcare providers and telecommunications organizations with industrialized vertical solutions and help them accelerate their transformation.
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