Post-GoLive release 20180730, IM Process Change and other Tips for Working in ServiceNow

The first post-golive update was released on, Monday, July 30. It contains over 40 fixes, many submitted by ITS staff members. The quick turnaround for this release is in large part thanks to the excellent collaboration between ITSM Change Agents and project team members.

In addition to release notes, we bring to your attention changes to the Incident Management process, and share a few Tips and Best Practices.

Highlights of Release 20180730

Below are just a few of the many issues addressed; for full release notes, please see the ITSM 20180730 Release Notes article in ServiceNow.

  • Work notes, Additional comments and Watch list fields will now be displayed on Ticket forms.
  • The My Groups’ Work and My Work lists will now exclude Tickets that were “transferred” (e.g. to Requests, Incidents or BNS). If you have already added these lists to your Favorites, you will need to delete them and re-add them.
  • Customers whose AD accounts are no longer valid, will now appear in the Caller/Affected User/Requested For lists.
  • When a customer replies to an email for a record that is closed – whether for Incident, Request Item or Ticket — it will now create a new Ticket, assigned to the IT Service Desk.
  • People outside of IT staff can now be added to the Watch list for Incidents, Request Items and Tickets.
  • Request creation, cancellation and closure notifications sent to the customer will include Submitted Title and Submitted Details of the requested item, instead of just the RITM titles from the request catalog.
  • The Standard Change template has been updated to contain “planned service outage” field.

Changes to the Incident Management Process 

With the introduction of ITSM 2.0, changes were made to the process for Incident and Major Incident management.

  • Service Desk no longer owns all incidents – Incident records can now be resolved directly by the resolver group and do not need to be assigned back to the IT Service Desk. Communication to the customer, through Additional Comments and Close Notes, should be done by the resolver group.
  • MINC role eliminated – The Major Incident Notifications Coordinator (MINC) role has been eliminated. The Major Incident Manager (MIM) is responsible for communications between the resolver and internal ITS stakeholders, throughout the incident resolution; however, they may delegate the task of sending IT Alerts to the IT Service Desk.
  • Difference between Parent <> Child and other Related Incidents
    • Updating a Parent Incident will update all Child Incidents, so we need to be very careful when we are resolving a Parent incident.
    • Updating a Related Incident will not impact the other incident.
  • Difference between Work Notes, Additional Comments and Close Notes
    • Work Notes are internal, used to send information to other members of the resolver team, or even notes to yourself.
    • Additional Comments are used to ask questions of the customer or communicate back & forth while the Incident is open.
    • Close Notes are used to communicate the final resolution to the customer. It could include steps that were taken to resolve the incident or the any additional steps the Customer needs to take to get back to normal.

Find instructions on Incident Management in the Knowledge article on ServiceNow.

If you would like to have the new Incident Management process presented to your group, contact Costa Samaras.

Process tips and best practices 

Configuration Item and Affected Service

When you choose a CI, it may automatically change the Affected Service value, depending on the relationships set up in the CMDB.

The recommended way to fill in the Affected Service and CI is to choose the Application in the CI field; this will automatically propose a Business Service for the Affected Service field. You can then select a different Business Service, but only if it is related to the chosen Application CI.

If the underlying cause of an incident is a lower-level CI, you can add that CI in the Affected CIs list, found at the bottom of the record.

Transfering Tickets to Requests

When you select Call Type “Request” from an existing Ticket be sure to click Update to transfer the Ticket and create the related Request Item. Do not move away from the Ticket record without clicking Update (in the case of a brand new Ticket you would need to click Submit).

Generic Request Items

When creating Generic Request items, on the RITM record, change the Title from “Generic Request” to something meaningful to the customer. You can remove the words “Generic Request” in the Title– there is another way to identify that type of request for reporting purposes.

Note that the initial email notification sent to the customer will still have the title “Generic Request”, but subsequent notifications will have the revised title.

Rich text formatting in Additional comments field

Currently the Additional comments field is not designed to easily support formatted text. However, there is a workaround: you need to use HTML formatting tags, and wrap the entire message in [code] … [/code] tags.


<p>Hello Joe,</p>
<p>Here are the steps you need to follow:</p>
<li>Enter your McGill Username and Password and click <strong>Login</strong>.</li>
<li>Open the <strong>My Work</strong> folder.</li>

In a future ITSM release, we will provide HTML formatting in a more seamless fashion.

Consulting Knowledge articles while you work

For help while working in ServiceNow, you can right-click Knowledge from the navigation bar and open the Knowledge Articles page in a new window.

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