Inclusion Cloud Digital Engineering
May 13, 2024
🕒 8 minutes
Know24 Recap
Table of Contents

“Every workflow in every business process in every company around the world is going to be completely rethought with GenAI.” 

That was the bold statement with which Bill McDermott opened Know24. And he went even further: He promised that we’re in a kind of renaissance in the information technology industry, a once-in-a-generation moment. 

“And you are the leaders that get to move us forward,” he encouraged the almost 20K attendees. 

From the first to the last session, the concept was clear: From now on, it’s all about giving our people the most powerful tool of our time – AI. We need to empower our workforce with AI capabilities to catalyze a transformation across every corner of our businesses, driving efficiency and innovation in every task we do, big or small

ServiceNow hosted an incredible conference in Las Vegas with three days full of insights, and the InclusionCloud team was there to bring us the freshest insights straight from the city of lights. 

Explore with us the best of Know24

I. Bill McDermott’s Key Insights at Know24 

🟢 What Will Happen to Our Jobs? 

Bill McDermott’s vision for the future of jobs is one of optimism and empowerment

 Many people are concerned about what will happen to our jobs with the rapid advancement of AI and automation. He reflected on how the advent of computing was perceived in the 1960s, where it was believed that 90% of jobs would be lost and only a few positions would remain for top executives. That’s why he emphasizes that there’s no need to worry, and his assertions are backed by data: 

Technology has created over 90 million jobs in the United States alone. And according to him, we’re just getting started.  

He urges attendees to embrace this moment as a global renaissance of innovation and emphasizes their role as culture carriers and force multipliers

“We will create, just in this audience alone, 1 billion hours of productivity this year”. That’s the great opportunity that ServiceNow offers to global businesses, guaranteeing that every minute counts in every workflow

Know24
Nick Baca-Storni, CRO of InclusionCloud with Bill McDermott.

🟢 The End of Soul-Crushing Work 

We’re facing a significant issue here: People are grappling with soul-crushing work, and that’s why they dread stepping into the office. 

McDermott states that there are workplaces where employees are dealing with an average of 13 different applications per day, sapping away 30% of their productivity. 

Who would willingly endure such an environment? That’s precisely why ServiceNow is working hard to set up a unified layer above all other systems, enhancing their functionality. This is what he has called the “platform of platforms.” 

McDermott has quoted Albert Einstein, who once remarked, “I’m not a genius, I’m just curious.” In simplicity lies the answer

Consider AI: amidst its complexity, the aim is to harness its power for the benefit of people. ServiceNow streamlines the chaos, converging it into one cohesive unit. ServiceNow serves as the AI platform for business transformation—an all-in-one solution. With their system of action, AI permeates every facet of your business

According to McDermott, the reason why all of us gather in Las Vegas is to seize the opportunity to simplify, to achieve what others couldn’t or chose not to do. 

And he made it clear: “Architecturally, we’re equipped for it.” Because 70% of the soul-crushing work that workers have to do in companies today can be eliminated by technological transformation and AI

🟢 Predictions Are Difficult, Especially if Future Is Involved 

That quote from Mark Twain was the introduction of a case study of a nationwide bakery chain facing significant operational hurdles. This case highlighted the importance of predictive capabilities in meeting the dynamic demands of customers

ServiceNow’s Now Platform has helped the bakery chain to tackle several challenges such as stalled growth, flat revenues, and increasing waste, with even seemingly minor issues like running out of popular items causing substantial revenue losses. 

ServiceNow’s Now Platform addressed these challenges by integrating disparate systems and data sources into a unified platform using Integration Hub

With all systems connected, ServiceNow leveraged AI capabilities to analyze real-time data from point-of-sale systems, IT-enabled ovens, customer counters, and other sources. This data was used to drive automated workflows, guiding bakery staff in decision-making processes such as when to restock shelves and what to bake based on predicted demand

For instance, if data showed a spike in demand for a particular item during specific weather conditions, AI would automatically alert staff to bake more of that item, ensuring shelves remained stocked and customers were satisfied.  

Now Platform also provided the company with comprehensive dashboards to track KPIs, enabling them to monitor revenue, waste reduction, and customer satisfaction metrics in real-time.  

🟢 Every Second Counts, In a F1 Racetrack or In Business Operations 

In the fast-paced world of Formula 1 racing, where every fraction of a second is crucial, the Aston Martin Team operates with precision to gain advantages in every corner, leveraging the ServiceNow platform. 

Consider the logistics: traveling to over 24 races in 21 countries within a calendar year demands substantial infrastructure and meticulous preparation for each Grand Prix. It’s imperative to free up team members to focus on what truly matters—finding every possible advantage. 

Just as clarity and efficiency are paramount on the racetrack, Now Platform aims to cut inefficiencies across our business operations, from office workflows to factory floor processes. 

🟢 Now Platform Makes Simple the Complexity 

Bill McDermott passed the baton to Platform Engineering VP Joe Davis and VP of Now Platform Jon Siegler, and they provided an in-depth exploration of the Now Platform and its AI integrations to revolutionize operations.  

They highlighted a common misconception in traditional enterprises: the belief that employees have a unique role and interact with only one system

They cited the case of Rebecca, head of HR, who not only works with HR systems but also manages a large team, mentors other employees, and engages with customers, necessitating access to multiple systems across the enterprise.  

The Employee Experience tool, also known as the “Help Me” experience, serves as a user interface designed to assist employees in navigating various systems and tasks efficiently. The Experience Layer was spotlighted for its people-centric design, driven by metadata to deliver contextual experiences tailored to each user.  

Furthermore, the Workflow Automation Layer was hailed as the heart of ServiceNow, enabling the orchestration of processes across various systems without disruption. Real-world scenarios showcased the platform’s impact, such as the drastic reduction in time spent creating knowledge base articles, from 30 minutes to mere seconds, with the assistance of AI. They also demonstrated how Now Assist transforms enterprise-wide search capabilities, seamlessly accessing both internal and external data sources (such as SharePoint) to provide instant, relevant answers. 

II. Put AI To Work for People 

🟢 Gen AI Is Now Native in ServiceNow Platform 

AI models are now native to the ServiceNow platform, forming the backbone of many applications. Unlike last year, this integration is already available and operational. All products and applications are developed and prioritized to meet the needs of diverse stakeholders, whether in technology, HR, security, customer service, or content creation. 

Over the past year, the focus has been on three major themes: scale, performance, and security.  

On the scale front, an exciting announcement was made: the introduction of Raptor DB, a new backend database optimized for both transactional and analytic workloads tailored to ServiceNow’s needs. In testing, a standard ServiceNow instance managed 35,000 transactions per minute under heavy load. After switching to Raptor DB, this figure soared to 93,000 transactions per minute—nearly three times the previous capacity.  

🟢 Satya Nadella, a Special Guest 

Satya Nadella, CEO of Microsoft, joined Knowledge 24 to discuss the powerful partnership between Microsoft and ServiceNow

Over the years, ServiceNow solutions have been seamlessly integrated with Microsoft’s technology stack, including Azure and Microsoft Teams.  

And now, they’re taking things to the next level by combining the power of ServiceNow’s Now Assist with Microsoft Copilot to supercharge productivity, and collaboration, and streamline business processes.  

This integration allows users to work within Microsoft 365 and Teams—no more jumping between apps

Srini Raghavan, Vice President of Product for Microsoft Teams, took the stage to demonstrate the magic of this integration:  

Picture this: you’ve been out of the office for a few days, and you return to a mountain of updates. Instead of feeling overwhelmed, you ask Copilot for the highlights. Copilot, with Now Assist, retrieves all the important information you missed.  

In another live demo, Srini showed how you can inquire about the laptop replacement policy. Copilot not only finds the policy but also helps you order a new laptop directly within Teams, turning a potential headache into just a couple of clicks

🟢 AI Agents: The Next Big Thing 

Imagine logging into your employee center home after struggling with device issues and software crashes while preparing for a big presentation. Your assistant, branded as Isabella, has already detected the problem. It proactively suggests an operating system upgrade to resolve the issue, allowing you to schedule the update at a convenient time. Isabella even checks your calendar and sets a reminder, making your life that much easier. 

But that’s not all—Isabella identifies unused software on your machine that’s costing your company money. It prompts you to remove these unnecessary programs, saving costs and decluttering your system.  

This is just the beginning. AI agents like Isabella are set to revolutionize the workplace. They enhance employee experience by handling routine tasks and allowing HR departments to focus on talent acquisition and people care.  

🟢 Take a Picture and You’ll Get a New Workflow 

The last thing you’d expect at a high-tech conference is an old whiteboard, but that’s exactly what was brought on stage. The point? To show how defining a process can be simplified into creating a workflow in seconds. Here’s how it works: 

Once you’ve mapped out your process on the whiteboard, you can create a workflow with minimal effort. CJ Desai demonstrated this in a live demo. He took a picture of the process on the whiteboard, uploaded it to his machine, and gave it a friendly name. Then, he jumped to the workstation, created a new playbook in Workflow Studio, and selected the image.

Instead of needing a developer to spend days or even weeks coding this process, Now Assist handled it in seconds. It generated the basic workflow structure immediately, helping to get started quickly. But it didn’t stop there. CJ showed how to continue building the individual steps using natural language. For instance, he created a step to perform database lookups and send an email notification based on the results, all without needing to understand complex coding constructs. 

This demonstration highlighted the ease and accessibility of creating workflows with Now Assist, making it possible for everyone—from seasoned developers to those with no coding experience—to benefit from this innovative process. 

🟢 Streamlining HR: Self-Serve Onboarding 

Redefining the employee experience is no small feat, but ServiceNow’s My Assist is up to the challenge. Take Mira, a new manager of an IT team, beginning her first day at ServiceNow. With the My Assist app, Mira’s onboarding journey is smooth and stress-free

Before Mira even sets foot in the office, she needs her employee badge. My Assist steps in, transforming her passport photo into a stunning badge photo using AI magic.   

My Assist keeps Mira on track, suggesting she head into the office with her digital badge ready. Upon arrival, the system has already set up the essential tools she needs.  

A pre-booked vacation was causing Mira some anxiety, but My Assist quickly alleviated her worries. Using enterprise-wide search, it pulls information from various sources, confirming her leave approval. It also schedules her typical meeting cadence, which she can adjust as needed. 

Metrics are crucial for Mira’s team, and My Assist generates real-time data visualizations that she can pin to her homepage for daily updates. The assistant also gathers essential resources and ensures she has access to all necessary documents, reaching out to her team if needed. 

In a conversation with My Assist, Mira drafts a personalized email effortlessly, even adding a family photo. The assistant reminds her of her orientation meeting and shows her the way. Curious about her manager, Mira asks for more info, and My Assist provides helpful links and photos. 

My Assist is a key tool that makes life easier for every employee, making them feel supported and ready to thrive from day one

🟢 Jensen Huang Is Riding the AI Speed Train 

Finally, comes the turn of Jensen Huang, CEO of NVIDIA, who spoke about the future of AI. Huang invited the hundreds of attendees to stop looking at the AI train from the side and instead get on the train. “On the train, it’s not moving that fast,” he said. 

Huang explained that we’re shifting from instruction-driven computing, where everything was coded manually, to intention-driven computing, which relies on intelligent intuition. This shift empowers non-coders to use AI by simply expressing their needs in everyday language, without needing to understand complex coding. 

During the demo of Now Assist, he presented the following scenario: imagine your Wi-Fi slowing down during a critical meeting. With intention-driven AI, you can simply express your need, and the system will upgrade your Internet plan instantly. 

The partnership between NVIDIA and ServiceNow aims to make AI faster, more accessible, and practical. AI agents like Now Assist can handle tasks such as case summarization, incident resolution, and knowledge-base article generation, making complex processes straightforward and efficient. 

By integrating AI into everyday workflows, NVIDIA and ServiceNow are transforming how businesses operate. This collaboration ensures that AI works hand-in-hand with teams to transform productivity in every task, making intention-driven computing a reality for all. 

Huang also spoke about the future of AI being multi-modal. This means AI will be able to understand and integrate information from various sources—text, images, voice, and more—providing a more comprehensive and intuitive interaction. AI will not only execute tasks; intelligent agents will also collaborate with people and other AI systems, creating a network of intelligent agents working together seamlessly. 

Conclusion 

Hope you have enjoyed Know24 as much as the InclusionCloud team did! Remember to follow us on LinkedIn, because we are live-covering all the major tech events to bring you the latest and greatest

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