A challenge becomes an obstacle only when you bow to it, and SMEs have proved this statement true by demonstrating their ability to weather any storm with their resilience. According to the CNBC|SurveyMonkey Small Business Index Q1 2023, 51% of respondents reported supply chain disruptions, 75% cited rising supply costs as a major concern, and 46% found challenges in locating the right talent. It implies that SMEs have a tough road ahead with the recession on the horizon, rising inflation, and talent retention; therefore, it is crucial to respond proactively to all challenges. ServiceNow has launched additional capabilities in the Now Platform, and their newly launched Supply and Finance workflows can help SMEs counter all the roadblocks smartly.
Manual Processes in SMEs
Business process automation has played a pivotal role in enabling SMEs to deal with market volatility, but only in a restricted manner. According to the report, only 16% of businesses have automated one part of their business and are yet to scale automation. There are multiple reasons for SMEs’ slow adoption of automation: high cost, lack of awareness and expertise.
Despite the constraints, there are certain areas where SMEs need to take the automation route to fasten the loose threats. There are many disconnected functions and processes where the cracks are still visible. For example, customer service, finance, and supply chain processes are still manual, leading to long processes and lost opportunities.
Many IT processes are manually driven, like managing tickets, incident management, asset management, and more. ServiceNow has introduced new features and capabilities that will support SMEs in optimizing their processes and build resilience by leveraging automation. The newly launched features include GenAI in the Now Platform, Text-to-code, Case Summarization, Finance and supply chain processes. SMEs can leverage these new capabilities to simplify their processes and unlock new possibilities. ServiceNow’s low-code, digital workflows enable SMEs to streamline their processes on a single cloud-based platform, enhancing employee productivity and better customer experiences.
ServiceNow’s Latest Feature Addition
ServiceNow opens new avenues for SMEs and other business organizations to streamline their operations in a low-code environment with its latest feature additions. These newly added capabilities ensure driving speed, efficiency, and productivity of small and medium enterprises.
So, let’s have a look at all the new features and how these capabilities enable SMEs to remove blockheads in their daily operations and scale up effortlessly.
Generative AI Capabilities in Now Platform: Small and medium enterprises need a way out to streamline their repetitive processes to reduce the burden on human resources and improve customer experiences. Generative AI uses Machine Learning frameworks, Natural Language Processing, Intelligent Search, Automation Discovery, and process automation to generate a wide range of content forms, creating limitless opportunities for SMEs. These include preparing personalized marketing content and campaigns, generating new ideas for product development, and providing content for FAQs in customer service.
A medium-level retail business struggled with its customer support and ticket routing operations. Each day, their customer representatives had to deal with customers’ major and minor issues, and there was no specific process to route tickets that needed an immediate response. Exploring GenAI’s capabilities in the Now Platform enables the business to leverage the power of virtual agents to support IT operations like handling customer queries 24/7, resolving technical issues, and empowering users via self-service options. It removes staff burnout as most common issues are resolved automatically with self-service portals, and in case of any complex scenario, the ticket is routed to the right IT person to help in faster resolution.
Regarding incident resolution, Generative AI can quickly identify critical issues by locating similarities across open cases. It enables businesses to take a proactive approach and resolve issues faster. A medium-sized warehousing company providing IT support struggled with resolving customer tickets due to volume and complexity. By optimizing GenAI, the business can easily locate and identify patterns in customer tickets and get to the root cause of the problem: their ticketing system is manual, and due to volume, errors and discrepancies have become deep-rooted. This insight can prove helpful to them to automate the process, and they can resolve the incidents faster.
Prioritization and routing of work is always a concern for SMEs chasing the target in a limited time frame. Using the GenAI in Now platform enables businesses to classify the requests, cases, and incidents and, prioritize them on a requirement basis, and route them to the right person at the right time to avoid escalations.
A small-sized manufacturing company received a lot of requests from customers, incidents, and cases each day regarding billing, product support, or issues of shipping delays. By leveraging GenAI, they can prioritize the requests, cases, and incidents by routing the right case to authorized personnel on time to avoid delays.
Finding the gaps in existing processes is crucial, and then taking a proactive approach to choose which processes should be automated is critical. A small retail company fulfilled a large number of orders in a day, and all processes were done manually. By enabling GenAI in the Now Platform, the company can derive insights from their data to drill down to the details that the orders are taking longer to fulfill due to the manual process of creating reports for out-of-stock items, getting approvals and putting purchase orders to prepare their stock and then they can decide to fill the gap by automating the process of inventory management, purchase orders, and accounts payable.
SMEs can supercharge productivity by enabling GENAI capabilities in each process and workflow. Employees get accurate information at the right time in front of them, which helps them resolve issues faster. A medium-scale wholesaler in the clothes business struggled with managing inventory stock according to trends and demand due to low visibility in the process. By opting for low-code digital workflows powered with GenAI, the wholesaler can have insights from past data along with a clear view of future demand that helps in maintaining required inventory and improving customer satisfaction. By connecting AI to analytics in real-time, the business benefits from enhanced visibility in each process, and decision-making is streamlined.
Case Summarization: A new feature launched by ServiceNow focuses on improving productivity and reducing manual processes. There are many cases in IT, HR, and customer service where the manual record of all the incident details, all the touchpoints, actions taken by all the parties involved, and incident resolution is taken. It is a mandatory manual task that is performed across all organizations, involving a lot of manual bandwidth and time. But, using GenAI in case summarization, all the tasks can be automated, and the case summary is ready without any hassle. It helps to reduce struggle between different departments and improve employee productivity as simplifying these complex processes enables employees to focus on areas where human intervention is needed.
Text-to-code powered by GenAI in Pro and Low-code Environment
Developers need to regularly work on some commands (create a file, write a simple function, read data from a file, write data to a file, connect to the database, create a report, and much more) that require manual work. They need to create the same code for routine commands, but by using the GenAI-powered text-to-code solution, the developers can automate the entire process. All they need to do is to write the code in natural language text describing the type of code they intend to have. The GenAI in Now Platform will transform the description into high-quality code suggestions. In some cases, developers can get complete code that they can review, edit, and finally implement. Therefore, the coding practices throughout the SMEs can be streamlined with GenAI.
Finance and Supply Chain Workflows
ServiceNow has launched finance and supply chain workflows that are powered by Intelligent Automation. The digital workflows enable finance and supply chain, and procurement processes to be streamlined with the power of AI to leverage the benefits of reduced costs, faster time to market, and improved customer service.
Small and medium businesses often struggle with supply chain disruptions, but using low-code digital workflows can simplify their operations and build more resilient supply chains. The finance and supply chain workflows are designed to bring people, processes, technology, and data into a single cloud data to ensure more transparency and better control over the finance and supply chain processes.
The latest features include:
Accounts Payable Operations: Using the low-code workflows, all the manual processes like data entry and 2-way/3-way matching invoices with purchase orders and goods received are automated. Moreover, SMEs can add more suppliers to their existing vendor database and include ESG, legal, and compliance activities into the single platform for more visibility.
As APO is part of Source-to-pay operations, the entire process of sourcing vendors, procuring goods, and making payments is brought down to a single source of truth. The Source-to-Pay operations enable SMEs to handle their existing resources smartly, manage their spending more efficiently, and ensure to bring only those vendors on board that meet the ESG benchmark.
To complement the newly launched APO service is the Clean Core ERP with App Engine, which employs a low-code environment to identify the technical debt of legacy ERPs to replace, remove, or automate it. It empowers SMEs to leverage end-to-end automation of their entire finance and supply chain operations and transform their ERP journey with Intelligent Automation.
A wholesale company dealing in Auto parts had a dedicated team using multiple tools for managing finance and supply chain operations. However, there were some discrepancies related to visibility in data, hampering their operations. They wanted to have a consolidated view of their finance and supply chain operations with end-to-end workflows that supported automating manual tasks such as invoice generation, shipment tracking, and preparing reports. Using ServiceNow’s Now platform, they can gain a consolidated view of their operations on a single cloud platform, and finance and supply chain workflows can boost operational efficiency.
The latest features offered by ServiceNow in the Now Platform are designed to empower small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) and other businesses. These features enable the use of GenAI, providing SMEs with capabilities, security, and analytics power. The goal is to empower the human workforce and make processes faster and more efficient. This leads to improved turnaround time and customer satisfaction. Trigent empowers small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) across various industries to scale, increase speed, and enhance productivity to achieve their business goals with the capabilities of ServiceNow.