To effectively manage and improve your systems, you need to know exactly what assets are in your IT environment and have current, accurate configuration data. With an accurate configuration management database (CMDB), it's easy to understand your organization's IT environment, particularly in the areas of service impact analysis, asset management, compliance, and configuration management.
The ServiceNow® CMDB provides a single system of record for IT. When paired with ServiceNow Service Mapping, the CMDB becomes service‑aware—which enables your ServiceNow applications to be service‑aware as well. Now with your CMDB, you gain full visibility of your infrastructure and services, leading to more control of your environment and better decisions.
The ServiceNow CMDB utilizes a single data model, with common processes, standard taxonomy, and prenegotiated semantics, format, and quality standards for exchanged data. As a result, every table, view, and application built on the Now Platform™ leverages a consolidated, single system of record.
This data model is also easily extensible: out‑of‑the‑box tables and views can be extended with a click; fields from other tables can be referenced and used to drive workflow; and data validation and normalization rules ensure that trusted data can be leveraged across any application, form, or workflow.
The CMDB may be easily and accurately populated with configuration item (CI) data through ServiceNow Discovery and other methods. Fully integrated and agentless, Discovery automatically identifies the type of CI it is interacting with and then launches additional probes and sensors that are appropriate to that device to gather further information and attributes.
The CMDB automatically checks the data for errors, normalizes and transforms the data, and then loads the data to ensure the most recent and accurate profile of that CI. ServiceNow Service Mapping overlays service maps onto existing configuration data to connect CIs underlying a given service, making the CMDB service‑aware.
The CMDB also integrates with the most common infrastructure platforms such as VMware vCenter and Microsoft System Center Configuration Manager, as well as endpoint management products. In addition, data may be imported into the CMDB through web services, direct database imports, and Excel files.
Transform maps and business rules enable inbound data to be mapped to target tables and fields, transformed, merged, and coalesced.
A health dashboard provides a single view of the quality of data at the CMDB, CI class, and CI levels using completeness, correctness, and compliance scores. The CMDB health benchmarks feature provides industry‑standard benchmarks across these scores, so IT can measure CMDB health relative to similar ServiceNow customers.
An auto‑remediation framework enables IT to take action to improve CMDB data quality. High‑quality data may be regularly maintained through a built‑in data certification capability, which assigns tasks to people and groups within IT to validate data models, attributes, non discoverable information, and CI relationships on a scheduled basis.
The CMDB’s business service management mapping functionality provides a clear, graphical view of complex IT infrastructure and service relationships. IT professionals can click through the data map, filtering data, focusing in on specific CIs, and viewing impact and risk alongside in‑flight operational activities such as incident, problem, and change requests.
A CI and service history timeline provides a visualization of planned and unplanned changes to CIs and alerts over time. A simple and flexible reporting engine enables IT to quickly create dashboards and generate reports, which may be scheduled to be distributed on a regular basis. A query builder provides a simple and intuitive way to query the CMDB for CIs and relationships across multiple CMDB tables, including service maps.
Administrators, system owners, and service owners can quickly identify configuration drift, unplanned changes, and incident history to understand the health of CIs they are responsible for and the operational activities directly or indirectly impacting those CIs.
The CMDB automatically integrates with all applications and features built on the Now Platform™, making it rich in functionality and value. IT can use the CMDB with Discovery, Service Mapping, and other applications to gain an end‑to‑end, service‑aware view of CI lifecycles. Where desired, IT can control access to CI classes, entire records, individual fields, and attributes to ensure only authorized users can update CI records.
An integrated SLA engine enables IT to track CIs against service levels and operational agreements. Information may be shared in chat channels and the Live Feed social stream. End users may subscribe to the services and CIs they are interested in, choose from several notification options, and receive messages on all types of mobile devices.
The ServiceNow CMDB is a service‑centric foundation that proactively analyzes service‑impacting changes, identifies issues, and eliminates outages. Paired with IT Operations Management applications, like Service Mapping and Discovery, the CMDB becomes service aware.
Consolidate disparate IT management systems into a single system of action to see what assets are in your IT environment, how they are configured, and how they're functioning at all times. Understand your organization's IT environment, particularly in the areas of service impact analysis, asset management, compliance, and configuration management.
Leverage the knowledge of business applications and the underlying technology in your IT environment to expand your ability to completely optimize your application portfolio. Extended application knowledge with metadata helps to rationalize applications, visualize how they support business capabilities, view their relationships to the underlying technologies, and uncover unique interdependencies between your application and service portfolios.