By Dick Stark
ServiceNow (SNOW) was in the news again last week for its proposed acquisition of IT Service Dependency Mapping vendor Neebula Systems for $100 million cash. Neebula gives SNOW an ADDM like product offering with its Service Dependency Mapping (SDM) and brings SNOW into the IT operations management (ITOM) market with its Service Performance Monitoring offering. On paper this seems like another good way for SNOW to continue to take core ITSM share from incumbents like BMC and HP. SNOW remains on a roll and is expected to overtake HP for the #2 ITSM market share position within the next 12 months.
BMC, however, is not going to allow SNOW to eat its lunch forever. Despite, all the attention focused on SNOW, BMC is still the overall market leader at around 40% counting its Numara and Track-It acquisitions. And with FootPrints v12, Remedyforce Summer 14, and a coming new release of Remedy, BMC is fighting back with strong alternatives.
What’s even more remarkable, is that SNOW’s momentum exists arguably despite Remedy’s technical superiority as compared to SNOW. The Gartner Magic Quadrant still rates BMC higher, and ITSM University, an independent ITSM “think tank” as of February 2014, still rated BMC Remedy considerably higher across a wide range of categories such as functionality, architecture, and pricing. Perception is reality, and this is where SNOW really shines.
SNOW has also excelled because of its SaaS based architecture which is becoming a defacto standard among CIOs. CA, HP, and BMC have all struggled to keep up. The good news is that Remedyforce is BMC’s fastest growing ITSM product with more than 600 customers. In that same ITSM University study, Remedyforce was ranked third behind Remedy and SNOW, and ahead of HP, Frontrange, Heat, and CA. Other competitors such as EasyVista and Cherwell were not evaluated due to their relatively small market share.
SNOW is “making hay” with this perceived SaaS competitor weakness. For example, when SNOW competes against Remedyforce SNOW points out that Remedyforce is not for larger organizations because of its lack of enterprise integrations, especially around monitoring and discovery. That is not true. . RightStar has already developed or assisted with integrations from Remedyforce to BMC systems such as FootPrints Asset Core, ADDM, BPPM, and Atrium Orchestrator. Additionally, we’ve also integrated Remedyforce to non-BMC products such as SCCM, LANDesk, Altiris, Courion, Spiceworks, Active Directory, Cloud Coach, VersionOne, Lawson, and Workday.
One place where SNOW excels is the user interface. For incident management, SNOW is very user friendly, and activity history and date and time tracking are easier to see. But don’t count Remedy or Remedy on-Demand out yet. The usability and performance improvements in the next version of Remedy will provide a significant improvement over past versions and a strong counter to SNOW’s claim that its software is much easier to use than Remedy.
Finally, SNOW doesn’t win them all. Just this past weekend RightStar migrated 60,000 SNOW tickets to Remedyforce for a large public relations agency. The customer turned off SNOW because it is consolidating its US and UK operations into a single incident, problem, change, and configuration management system based upon Remedyforce.