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ServiceNow Citizen Development Program: Empowering Non-Technical Users

In this blog, we discuss how a Citizen development program with ServiceNow can create applications to solve everyday business problems, streamline workflows, and foster innovation across your organization.
ServiceNow Citizen Development Program | Binmile

With the advent of new technologies and processes, businesses are compelled to offer digitally enhanced solutions and improved competitiveness. However, as the demand for software solutions and apps grows at a breakneck pace, IT departments feel overburdened and organizations struggle to fulfill every request from the end users. Businesses are recognizing that rolling out strategic applications can help them edge out the competition. One of the ways to do it without creating an IT backlog crisis is to tap into the untapped resources. Herein, citizen developers bring unique knowledge and additional bandwidth into the mix to make creating more apps possible.

This key initiative in many organizations is reducing IT workload and allowing them to focus on core business activities. Competent cloud platform, ServiceNow is also empowering these ‘citizen developers’ with the tools and processes needed to build their applications on the Now Platform. So who is a citizen developer? How can businesses leverage the program to power their digital transformation without burdening their IT workforce? Moreover, what are the benefits of using ServiceNow citizen development? If you’ve got these questions, then this blog is for you. Let’s learn how anyone can be a citizen developer using the Now Platform and what advantages it brings to an organization’s workflow and profit margin.

Enhancing Innovation and Productivity with ServiceNow Citizen Development Program

What is a Citizen Developer?

According to ServiceNow’s official website, citizen developers are “non-IT employees who create applications or enhance existing systems, often without formal training in software development. Typically, these individuals leverage no-code/low-code platforms or other approved tools to build solutions that meet business or personal needs.”

Therefore ServiceNow citizen development would involve a software development process that requires limited to no coding experience. Additionally, the tools provided to them must be easy to use and also provide enough functional depth to accommodate their business needs. That’s where the Now Platform enters, which lets them automate, extend, and build digital workflow applications or apps across the organization. Do you know how it is democratizing and expediting app delivery? Features like drag-and-drop and pre-built blocks empowered 62% of citizen developers to develop an app in less than two weeks, 27% did it in 2 to 4 weeks, and 13% took more than a month.

Also Read: ServiceNow Platform Implementation Process

How to Build a Successful ServiceNow Citizen Development Program: 7 Key Steps

How to Build a Successful ServiceNow Citizen Development Program | Binmile

We’ll understand the benefit of implementing Citizen Development later in the blog as it offers more than speedy app development. For now, let’s focus on how businesses can leverage the Now Platform with Citizen developers. Here’s a step-by-step guide to help you utilize the platform that offers a single mobile and web application development platform to quickly build business applications to power digital transformation.

Step 1. Define Your Goals

Clearly state what your program intends to achieve. Whether it is streamlining the processes, stimulating innovation, or improving the customer experience, the primary objective should be well-defined. Give a tangible number; it could be the total cost to save or a faster time-to-market period. Doing so helps you stay on track, while attracting the participants and in determining the program timeline and vision.

Step 2. Establish Governance

Set up an effective governing system or guidelines with the main objective of ensuring the citizen-developed solutions are aligned with organizational policies and security protocols. Discuss the roles and responsibilities of every party involved. From citizen developers, IT team, and business stakeholders, this helps you bring accountability to the program. You can also benefit from the ServiceNow App Engine Management Center for lifecycle governance and control enforcement.

Step 3. Empower Your Participants

Strive to develop a workplace environment that fosters innovation and drive to learn beyond what their roles and responsibilities ask them to do. Help them garner the knowledge and resources that will enable them to train and guide others in the future. These participants or ‘champions’ are the ones that drive a collaborative and supportive infrastructure which is ultimately the foundational function of your mentorship program.

Step 4. Cultivate Skills and Support

The next step is to create a comprehensive training and support system. Provide both offline and online classes as well as occasional one-on-one sessions, you should also customize the training to the skill levels and specific roles of your employees. A centralized ecosystem or forum that explains, and offers tutorials, lessons, or how-to guides empowers citizen developers.

Step 5. Showcase Success and Celebrate

Promote successful citizen-made apps to the general public and further their development by showcasing success stories. This may inspire others to take part and show that the program is effective. Highlight, appreciate, and acknowledge achievements to boost morale and encourage others in ongoing participation.

Step 6. Measure and Adapt

One must establish key performance indicators (KPIs) for measuring a program’s performance. Some of the points could be the number of applications developed as well as user adoption rates, cost savings, and turnaround time. Regularly audit and evaluate your program training resources and approach based on this data. This helps you make informed decisions on where you stand or if you are aligned with the goals that were set out earlier or not.

Step 7. Foster Collaboration and Innovation

Promote, and perpetuate collaboration of citizen developers, IT, and business stakeholders by creating one core organization platform. Develop communications channels, platforms for sharing experiences, and networks of collaboration. When you foster the dissemination of information and give a chance(s) for feedback and review session(s), this brings about transparency and progressive changes to the process for a higher success rate.

*Bonus Point

ServiceNow also offers training to citizen developers for creating ServiceNow applications. Here’s how you can avail it:

  • To access Citizen Developer Training please set up an account with the ServiceNow webpage.
  • Click on the account icon in the top right corner of the landing page.
  • Select “Get a ServiceNow ID”.
  • Fill out the details and press “Sign Up” at the end of the form.
  • Once logged in, search for “ServiceNow Citizen Developer Learning Path.”
  • After reaching the path, go to the ServiceNow Access catalog item and choose the option “other.”
  • State the request that you need the “Citizen Developer” role.

Happy learning!

Read More: How AI with ServiceNow Drives Innovations

Empower your organization with automation and customized app development without coding with us! Get in touch today!

Top Benefits of Implementing ServiceNow Citizen Development Program

Here are the top 5 benefits of using the ServiceNow Citizen development program for your business:

Top Benefits of Implementing ServiceNow Citizen Development Program | Binmile

  • Enhanced Speed and Agility: The program can empower organizations to build applications quickly with ServiceNow’s low-code/no-code tools. This skips the often long predetermined IT development cycles, letting businesses respond faster to current market changes and opportunities.
  • Fueled Innovation: It provides an innovative environment by empowering employees to solve complex problems and automating tasks directly within the ServiceNow ecosystem. Domain or Subject Experts can come up with innovative approaches to fix critical issues, leading to a generation of new ideas.
  • Improved User Experience: Citizen developers are already business users, so they understand the challenges and bottlenecks faced by their colleagues. Thus, they can build apps that are convenient, comfortable, and focus on the specific needs of customers – using this approach they may achieve more positive feedback and greater acceptance for their product.
  • Empowered IT Teams: With citizen development, the IT resources can be deployed on crucial tasks as citizen developers don’t require IT expertise to create apps. However, your IT team can guide over complex projects, and strategic plans, and provide oversight while citizen developers handle routine affairs in the process of the app development services.
  • Optimized Costs: One of the key benefits of citizen developer applications is that they may involve lower ServiceNow custom app development than traditional application development. ServiceNow enabled citizen developers to leverage low-code/no-code platforms that cut down on development time and resource allocation further resulting in decreased operational costs.

Read Further: Hybrid Cloud Management with ServiceNow

Wrapping Up

Citizen development is surely going to gain traction and transform the way businesses offer digital solutions and operate. After all, to gain a competitive advantage through digital automation, it makes sense to empower non-IT employees to create applications that solve their day-to-day challenges. Moreover, it is allowing businesses to easily complete weeks of work in just minutes via automation of the end-to-end deployment process. Thus, empowering IT to move at the speed of ever-evolving customer speed. However, it can pose challenges if not implemented properly. Hurdles like investment costs, governance, and compliance issues, among others. With proper strategy and fostering a learning environment, businesses can leverage this transformative force to create apps that automate workflows with ServiceNow and drive your company’s transformation efforts.

It can be overwhelming to understand how to utilize the ServiceNow citizen development program or the way low-code development can boost your workforce’s productivity. We recommend you consult with software development company. With its expertise and technical know-how it can help you reduce the technical barriers to software development, and be more efficient and innovative.

Binmile Technologies
Nipun Porwal
Sr. ServiceNow Consultant

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