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We’re in this together

Protect your team and fight COVID-19 with these free apps from ServiceNow, deployed for free by CloudGo.  Whether you have ServiceNow or not, we promise to deploy these for you within three days at most. This is a fast moving and fluid situation – make sure your organisation is also moving fast to reduce the impact of this pandemic. Wash your hands, practise social distancing, and leverage CloudGo and ServiceNow’s expertise to help stay safe!

More information about these above applications can be found at below links https://www.servicenow.com/solutions/crisis-management.html

Adopt, Advise, Cloud Infrastructure, CloudGo, CSAT, Customer Experience, Customer Success, HR, HRSD, ITBM, ITSM, Reviews, ServiceNow

We’ve done it! 10/10 CSAT Score

As a Premier partner, CloudGo takes the modern approach with harnessing the vast ServiceNow platform to reap the maximum results. Speaking of maximum results, we are delighted to announce our company has achieved a perfect 10/10 CSAT score, making us the highest rated ServiceNow partner in the region. What does this mean? Put simply, we get the job done in the best way possible!

The CSAT (Customer Satisfaction) rating is established through customer feedbacks post project completion; accounting for and averaged over the past 12 months of engagements. The scale ranges from 0 to 10, with 10 representing the utmost customer satisfaction record! And being the highest CSAT rated partner, our repeat hire rate also stands at over 85%.

Based primarily in southeast Asia and Australia, we serve customers from around the world. Our certified team of ServiceNow engineers have ample experience to guide you through your needs; and across multiple platforms from ITSM, CSM, SecOps and much more! CloudGo is committed to maintaining the highest regional CSAT rated partner title; and that means putting the customer first at every step along the way!

Adopt, Advise, CSM, Customer Experience, Customer Success, HRSD, ITBM, ITSM, SECOPS, Service Management

CloudGo Achieves Premier Partnership with ServiceNow

“We’re excited to announce that CloudGo is now a ServiceNow Premier partner!”

 2019 has been a year of significant growth and changes for CloudGo, and we’re proud to add this achievement to the many we’re ticking off this year.  Premier (formerly Silver) is an exclusive club, where partners must show sales, presales and delivery capability and certifications, all the while adding value to customers and keeping a high customer satisfaction rating.  We average a CSAT of 9.6, with less than one change request per project, and 90%+ of our customers come back from at a least second engagement.  We look forward to continue this growth and provide value to even more customers across the region. Thank you to all at ServiceNow and our customers who have supported and trusted us in this journey, and of course to our great team who deliver results on a daily basis.

Adopt, Advise, Customer Success, Enhance, Service Management

CloudGo Achieves Bronze Sales & Services Partner Designation from ServiceNow

 Achieves Partnership Level in Just Six Months; “We’re Just Getting Started” says Co-Founder

Singapore — November 1st, 2018 — CloudGo today announced it has achieved the ServiceNowÒ Bronze Sales & Services Partner designation.  This achievement recognizes CloudGo’s commitment to training and product expertise, certification and customer satisfaction to provide ServiceNow implementations.

“We’re excited to reach this level of partnership with ServiceNow, but for us and our customers it’s only the beginning,” said Rahul Garg, ServiceNow practice director at CloudGo. “We’re very focused on helping our customers gain value from the wide range of capability in the ServiceNow platform, and our current customer satisfaction rating of 9.67 attests to this.  Our partnership level with ServiceNow shows the depth of skills and experience we can bring to the market. We look forward to continuing to grow with ServiceNow and our customers.”

The ServiceNow Services Partner Program recognizes partners based on their experience, expertise, competencies and specializations. CloudGo has set themselves apart from other ServiceNow partners because of their depth of knowledge, expertise and experience retained within the company. It’s important for organizations to choose a partner who has high levels of achievement within the ServiceNow Services partner program, as it ensure they are committed to staying up to date on the latest product developments of the ever-expanding capabilities offered by ServiceNow.

CloudGo is a consulting company that solves business problems using digital transformation on modern cloud platforms like ServiceNow. Dual headquartered in Singapore and Sydney, CloudGo has helped a wide range of mid-market and enterprise customers solve service management and workflow problems. For more information visit www.cloudgo.asia or email [email protected]

Adopt, Advise, Cloud Infrastructure, Collaboration, Enhance, Services

Going back to the basics of IT security implementation

To use a simple analogy, building a strong foundation for a house means you can build one floor after another with no risk to security. Security infrastructure in IT needs to be rewired and strengthened at this level to support IT operations, rapid application and development with minimal additional risk to security, enabling rapid and evolving business growth.

We are suffering now, to some extent, from a legacy of thought that there were no security risks and threats to and IT infrastructure. The old mainframe computing model meant that only those with terminal access could change and run code and the security was largely governed by physical access to those terminals. The huge developments in connectivity with WiFi and VPNs and, essentially, the internet, means (and have meant for some time) that physical proximity of access is now irrelevant. It can be argued that the enthusiasm for application development and the world of the internet, ecommerce and mobile has relegated, in some parts, security development to a lower priority.

During the 80s, with companies such as Novell replacing the Mainframe computing model by with contributions to the large area networks, there was a need to expand the functionality of security infrastructure across organizations. Running a mainframe was expensive, companies such as Microsoft and IBM seized the opportunity and became serious market players in the network connected PC space, but even then, security was not a priority, only the advancement in technology. It was not perceived as something at risk, unlike today. It was always about budgets and short – term solutions competing with issues of security. With cursory nods towards anti-virus patching the fundamental foundations of a secure infrastructure were still being ignored.

IT today is fantastically accessible. And that is, at once, the whole point of large parts of it whilst and the biggest threat – the world’s largest technological dilemma is you like.  A door isn’t enough, there is a need for a sturdy door with a robust lock that opens only when required. The landscape has fundamentally changed which requires us to go back and rethink the fundamentals of IT implementation. While there is no doubt that it is expensive and complex, it is imperative. Arguably the greatest threats faced by us today are cyber risks. Giving not enough considerations to the founding infrastructure of systems in the past was the problem – something that we realize today. Everything we now know means organizations must take a step back and look again at the fundamental components of their architecture and systems.

IT changes and technological advances at the end of 90s and during the early 00s, meant that breaches of security started happening on a large scale. More recent catastrophic cyber events called for a huge rethink and re-prioritization of security infrastructure. Organizations and individuals began to realize how cyber security infrastructure is key to the success of any business as the security maturity level of a company brings, not only the security itself, but also credibility to the organization.

With the vast amounts of data available today, and its increasing sensitivity, the core of dependable security lies in the strong architectural foundation of security infrastructure. Security is no longer a trade-off for convenience. As the attacks continue and become increasingly sophisticated, our approach and commitment to security infrastructure needs prioritising and tackling with the same enthusiasm as those looking to break it.

Where does your security sit? How mature is your current security? How resilient are you currently? These questions must be asked by each and every one of us.

The greater the immunity, the more resistance there is to the threat. And immunity comes from having a strong and fit body – a strong and fit infrastructure. Contemporary CIOs should be building a security strategy, taking the lead on restructuring security, and create and develop a culture of cybersecurity-first within the organization.

It’s not just a commercial issue of course and the IT systems that facilitate and support government operations are under a greater risk. It can be a disaster if security breaches happen with government related data. This article talks about current targeted attacks in South and Southeast Asia, proclaiming the importance of building an Information Security Infrastructure that is robust, resilient, and dependable.

There’s a stark bottom line here –  you either have a robust security infrastructure, or you have CloudGo set one up for you!

Adopt, Advise, Cloud Infrastructure, Collaboration, Customer Success, Enhance, Manage, Service Management, Services

Rory Fitzpatrick talks all things cloud, security and office of the future

*This article is reposted from “https://www.systemsgo.asia/rory-fitzpatrick-cloudgo-talks-things-cloud-security-office-future/”* 

Eighteen months into his journey of starting and building his cloud services consultancy, we spoke with Rory Fitzpatrick, CEO and co-Founder of CloudGo.  After starting the business with his colleague from Cloud Sherpas, Rahul Garg, CloudGo now employs 12 people in two countries.  CloudGo has venture backing by systemsGo, an IT Services and Solutions company founded nearly 20 years ago in Japan and now operating across APAC.  Understanding the importance of cloud services and how this needed to be developed hand in hand with an appropriate IT architecture, systemsGo decided to invest in established competence and expertise instead of trying to build a practice from scratch.

Rory started by telling me why this relationship with systemsGo is so important.

RF: “At CloudGo, we’re focused on solving our clients’ problems using modern cloud platforms.  This ranges from CRM, to service management, to Office 365 and cyber threat management – helping you sell more, save more, and stay secure with reduced risk.  Part of the way we solve problems is helping our clients get the best out of what are sometimes called business technologies and applications.  With any technology, part of getting the best out of it is ensuring that it is running on a properly designed and optimised infrastructure.  systemsGo has years of experience across technologies and regions, so having the investment from, and partnership with, systemsGo means we’re able to better scale to support our customer’s challenges and collectively adopt a solution approach with our clients.

“So, in your first 18 months what are the key questions and challenges people are coming to you with – what’s on people’s minds when it comes to cloud?”

RF: “Ha, that’s easy, there’s one question that stands out and that is simply, ‘am I secure’?  We’ve had several recent ransomware attacks in the global news so everybody is familiar with cyber security being a huge concern.  At CloudGo we have some specific capability around cyber threat management and compromised recovery across Windows and Linux.  We talk with our clients about points where a software environment and infrastructure environment is vulnerable to attack, known as attack vectors and surfaces.  These include vulnerability from a phishing email and the damage that could do, but also includes identifying insecure servers and network devices and unpatched machines, then hardening that environment to make you more secure.

“So, if I was to use an analogy of guarding a building with security cameras, you’re looking to minimize the blind spots?”

RF: “Exactly, visibility is a big part of it. It’s also making sure the fences and walls are strong enough and high enough, and making sure the right people have access to the building.  Controlling identities on the environment, ensuring that the right people can get at the right stuff at the right time and the wrong people can’t, is critically important.  This is another area where systemsGo are invaluable of course, with their infrastructure competencies and the experience they’ve built up over nearly 20 years.”

“So, after security what are people talking about?”

RF: “Interestingly, it’s user experience.  And by that, I mean our clients are talking about how users interact with applications or business technologies.  Mobile too now is very important and often the starting point of a UX/UI discussion, but the basics are the same.  Having an application that is easy to use and provides a wonderful experience promotes both user adoption and drives better and more productive results.

Whilst cloud-based services take away a lot of headaches we used to get with client deployment, I’d be kidding, of course, if I said that we don’t still encounter challenges with older and different version of operating systems, for example, and we rely on the systemsGo engineering team to help us in this area.

“It sounds like that area of things is very important to businesses”

RF: “It is, and it has broader implications too. Increasingly now businesses need to be adopting the latest business technologies and contemporary architectures for the fundamental reason of remaining competitive in attracting the right talent.

“Can you explain what you mean by that?”

RF: “Sure, people have a huge exposure now to contemporary technology and applications.  They’re doing things on the bus on their way to work that would have seemed fanciful 15 years ago.  People used to have to go to their office to use great technology and applications but now we’re running the serious risk of dumbing them down once they step into the office environment.  Just think how often your apps on your phone update and what your phones looks like now compared to even just five years ago.  Yet we think nothing of stepping into an office and using a system that might not have changed much in 10 years.  To attract the best people and to get the best out of them, companies need to be offering them business applications to do their job and environments that feel contemporary and ‘advanced’ –  that means that companies must consider cloud-based technologies.

Hand in hand with this too of course is the way that office environments must be vibrant and welcoming to the workforce – a workforce that is quite different in its expectations and demands from those looking to join companies as recently as 20 years ago.  With increased numbers of mobile and remote users, the reliance on conferencing facilities and other technology-driving factors, this has become a core proposition for our systemsGo colleagues when they work with clients to design office spaces and merge technology into user needs and great environments.

“It sounds like an exciting time”

RF: “We certainly think so, and so do our team members!  We’re experiencing rapid growth and hence are always looking for good people to join us on our mission of helping our customers solve these business problems.  Knowing systemsGo has our back gives us a level of stability and scale that a young company normally wouldn’t have, and makes us a more valuable proposition to our clients.”

Adopt, Advise, Collaboration, Customer Success, Enhance, Services

Revenue vs Margin – What Priorities Drive Business Success?

Recently we were lucky enough to have Mike Matthews from Twisted Thinking speak at a customer-facing lunch at our offices.  As Mike says, “Your results are simply the outcomes of something that happened in the past. And you can’t manage the past. You can only manage the present.”  And when you talk specifically about Revenue vs Margin, there are a number of leading behaviours, leaning indicators, and lagging results.

Champion teams know how the game is played, know what the game plan is, and have the behaviours, outcomes and results mapped out in advance.  If you focus on leading indicators – execution behaviour and the required outcome – then coach to get it right every time, you’ll start a cascade of results.  Your behaviour changes the customer behaviour which changes the results.

As Mike says, “If you want to change your results, you have to change your behaviour – and that means getting very, very clear on what good looks like”.

If you’d like a copy of Mike’s presentation which will give you exact examples of how to achieve this across revenue or margin, or if you’d like to go on our mailing list to know of our future events or thought leadership, email us.

 

Adopt, Advise, Analytics, Cloud Infrastructure, Collaboration, Manage

Driving Office 365 Adoption

One question we often get from clients who have moved to Office 365 is “We like it, but we’re not sure we’re getting all the value we can from the Suite.  Can you help us understand our usage and drive uptake?”

What a lot of people don’t realise is that Micrososft themselves have released a number of good tools to help you understand usage.  First, there’s the upgraded admin center, released in March last year. Next step is to leverage the reporting portal, also released in March last year.

While this was a good start, we’re very excited about the release of the public preview of the Office 365 “adoption content pack”  in Power BI.

“Office 365 gives users the freedom to work from anywhere and the services they need to be more productive and collaborative. Sometimes, however, people need a helping hand to get started with Office 365. For example, if someone doesn’t use Skype for Business, they might not know how to get started using Skype or understand how they can leverage it to communicate better. In either case, the IT department might want to connect with this person to provide them with more information or training resources.

The new Office 365 adoption content pack gives you a cross-product view of how users communicate and collaborate to help IT admins provide more targeted user communication. When you better understand how employees use the various services within Office 365, it is easy to decide where to prioritize training and communication efforts. The content pack lets admins further visualize and analyze their Office 365 usage data, create custom reports, share insights and understand how specific regions or departments use Office 365.”

The reports are a lot more detailed and insightful – for example:

But we’re particularly excited about how our global clients are going to be able to visualise uptake in their various geographies:

Feel free to contact us for more information on how to deploy this in your environment, and then how to make the most of the learning this data and analysis will give you. [wcp_contactform id=”wcpform_hxgn8u984″]

Adopt, Advise, Collaboration, Enhance, Service Management

Service Portal in ServiceNow – Power and Beauty

‘Use Service Portal to create a delightful experience for your users’ – this is the very first line in an article about Service Portal available in ServiceNow Product Documentation portal. Starting from Geneva, I have customized and built several portals and dashboards in Service Portal and my experiences say the above line is completely true. I completely agree and I believe those who are working with and using Service Portal will agree with me.

Many people think Service Portal is an alternative to CMS and hence it’s going to replace CMS. YES, certainly Service Portal is replacing CMS but that’s not the only thing we should think of about Service Portal. It could be as powerful as to become an effective alternative to ServiceNow Standard UI for many users and roles whereas CMS was mainly built for end users to submit request and check the status of their tickets.

Comfort – for both Users and Developers

The ServiceNow platform changes how people work, and Service Portal will change how people interact with data and the tool. With the help of Twitter Bootstrap, AnguarJS, HTML5 and SCSS Service Portal is ready to provide ultimate, ubiquitous and useful (easy to use and easy to perceive) functionalities through different types of computing devices starting from Desktop, laptop to hand held devices.

Service Portal can eliminate “noise” for the logged in user by presenting data the user wants and needs to view and interact with. This delivers a clearer interface, which is key as far as end user experience is concern.

It’s been a huge relief for the developers as well, for two main reasons:

  • Compared to building or customizing a portal in CMS, it’s way more comfortable and easier to configure and build in Service Portal. No more Jelly script needed for building portal!!!
  • Unlike CMS which could be quite restrictive, the sky is the limit in terms of potential ways of implementing business requirements. It can interact with every component in the underlying ServiceNow platform and incorporate any UI technologies easily.

Possibilities – case studies

By building different widgets and with the help of CSS driven page layout Service Portal can be leveraged to present information and action for a user within a single page. You can lay down several widgets that are dedicated to display designated information in a much more autonomous manner. It’s like a multi-dimensional facet which gives you 360-degree view of your data, and you can pick different perspective and make decision effectively and efficiently with few mouse clicks – and most importantly, staying on the same page.

I am going to share 2 case studies that support the claims so far we have made in this article.  Many thanks to our good friends at Cask LLC who bought us in, and did a lot of the design and creative work that we built on this project.

Case study 1: Procure to Pay portal

We’ve recently deployed a project for a finance department at a large customer, managing the Procure to Pay process entirely through a Service Portal front end. The entry page was designed in such way that the related information is grouped together and presented whenever the user wants to view.

There are top row widgets which are used to display top category information for the logged in user. Upon selection of the widget in the top row, there are dynamic tabs below which are populated and provide further categorized information. The number of tabs depends on the top row widget selection. For example, when you click on My Approvals widget, it gives you only two tabs as opposed to four tabs when ‘My Activities’ is selected.

Widgets we deployed include:

  • The Filter widget which dynamically displays saved or default filters for the selected category and logged in user. Users can edit the filter on the fly to filter the data instantly without saving it for future use.
  • The Vertical List widget displays the list of items/records with summary information based on the selected top row widget (main category), selected tab (sub-category) and filters. This vertical list can also be paginated, so instead of showing all records at a time it lists first few records for big list with the ability to let user load more data whenever needed. It has sort options and sort criteria dropdown box to sort the list as required.
  • The detail widget present detailed information about the selected record along with related records in tabular fashion. You can also perform different activities like attaching an attachment, creating a duplicate record, sending email or inserting a comment. You can also turn a switch on or click a button to view further information related to the record if you need. For example, you can view list of approvers for the record or you can turn on ‘View cost allocation’ switch button to view further information.

Case study 2: Financial Close Management Dashboard

This project focused on helping the Finance department manage the processes for closing the month. This is like the Procure to Pay app but even more complex in terms of transactions and functionalities.

This Close Management Dashboard introduced a carousel to display more widgets within the same page – while there are seven widgets, only 3 are displayed at any one time.

We also incorporated different graph libraries to present data in different fashions – for example vertical lists and detailed forms on the one page.

Final comments

This is not our intention to review these two portals, and there’s only so much we can show in a blog post. But I wanted to showcase the possibilities and potentials of Service Portal that we can harvest out of Service Portal capabilities as per our need.

The beauty of Service Portal is reusability – whatever you develop that can be reused for other portals. It could be a Style Sheet, Widget, Header, Footer, Theme, or any other dependencies (APIs, Angular Services, Directives etc), they can potentially be reused. This reduces time to market.

A word of warning – what is needed is proper planning, where planning should be completely aligned with business need and expectation. Importantly you need a good layout designer that depicts the plan and verifies whether the need and expectations are met. Attention to details (e.g. font color, font size, positioning etc) is very important in this kind of project as your ultimate objective is to give user a delightful experience.

Best of luck, and feel free to reach out if you have any questions.

Adopt, Advise, Cloud Infrastructure, Enhance, Manage, Services

CloudGo Turns One

Many thanks to all who joined us at last week’s birthday party! We’re happy and grateful that our business, our idea, of a consultancy that delivered business value through cloud and digital transformation, has made it through the first year.  We’d like to thank all those who have made it possible – our customers, partners, friends, investors and supporters.

We’ve been going through some significant changes recently – we’ve tripled in size in the last year, opened our Australian office, and launched a new Cloud Infrastructure and Collaboration practise to be led by Haythum Auda (see the other blog post).  Our Salesforce and Service Management practises continue to grow, and we’ve delivered a number of advisory workshops and engagements recently.

Thank you all again – we look forward to an even bigger party next year, and more cake!

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