By Shane McDermott, Director of Alliances at iQuate

Last week we announced that iQuate had received an Application Certification from ServiceNow, one of the hottest tech companies around and a big player in the IT management space. Gartner named ServiceNow a leader for the second year in a row in its 2015 Magic Quadrant for IT Service Support Management (ITSSM) vendors.

This is pretty impressive for a start-up that only launched in 2004. But what makes ServiceNow’s rise even more spectacular is the big names it’s taken on and the marketplace it’s disrupted. There are over twenty ITSSM vendors, including established IT giants like CA, HP and IBM. At the end of the last decade their tools began to look a little inflexible and out of step with the burgeoning world of virtualization and a gap opened that ServiceNow was ready to fill.

What disrupted these established players was ServiceNow’s SaaS-based platform. Using flat architecture with a single data model, the traditional silos that hamper IT management were broken down and new life was breathed into a moribund market segment. Swinging the market even further in ServiceNow’s direction was an enhanced service scope in ITIL 2007, and the extension of the ITIL Service Catalogue in particular.

The ServiceNow platform could quickly embrace the new processes while older more rigid helpdesk tools struggled to stay relevant. The likes of CA and HP have seen their service management revenues decline since 2010, despite attempts to emulate the cloud-based approach that has proved so successful for ServiceNow.

Fellow travellers in disruption

Meanwhile, we were on a parallel journey. We at iQuate recognized early on that virtualization and clustering technologies were transforming the data center and posing big challenges for IT management. The piece in the puzzle we focused on was discovery and dependency mapping in data center environments where applications were increasingly decoupled from the infrastructure layer.

We could see this was becoming a big deal for large enterprises as they looked to take advantage of new cloud services only to find themselves embroiled in what Gartner has termed bimodal IT – where one strand is legacy and stable and the other is all about innovation and agility.

Organizations that want the agility of hybrid IT – taking different services from different clouds – risk missing out on the benefits because they don’t have the visibility they need to ensure the new estate is always optimized. That got us thinking about our role in the wider world of IT management and we knew we had to work with ServiceNow.

Complementary services

ServiceNow certification means organizations can use our dependency mapping solutions to populate ServiceNow’s configuration management databases (CMDBs). IT Ops and Service Managers will be able to explore further the complex relationships and dependencies that underpin infrastructure in the modern data center.

The combination of our discovery and dependency mapping solution with the ServiceNow platform provides not just a thorough inventory of assets that might otherwise have been hidden, but also an understanding of how relationships work across complex virtualized estates. By pulling our data into their CMDBs, IT teams will have the information they need for optimization, asset management and more effective system configuration.

This is a significant breakthrough – iQuate working with the capabilities inherent in ServiceNow for the creation of a comprehensive IT record that is invaluable for strategic and tactical initiatives. We see a big use case around cloud infrastructure management where the challenge is orchestrating multiple and very disparate services. You can’t orchestrate anything without a clear understanding of the components at your disposal.