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ITSM + ITOM Solutions

The Customer


Geisinger is one of the nation's largest health service organizations. Founded in 1915 by Abigail Geisinger, Geisinger serves millions of residents throughout Pennsylvania and New Jersey through their 13 hospital centers and 2 research centers.  


The organization is widely recognized for their innovative use of electronic health records as well as the development of innovative care delivery models.


The Challenge

As an organization widely recognized for their innovation, Geisinger knew they wanted to replace their outdated systems with a cloud-based solution that would allow them to be proactive and work more efficiently. There was a lack of consistency with their Remedy ticketing system—not all of their IT teams tracked work within their system and all tickets were tracked as incidents, making it difficult to understand the cost of work or services provided.

Prior to the implementation of ServiceNow, Geisinger was utilizing a fully-customized, home-grown Remedy application, which was developed and maintained internally for more than 20 years. This solution was somewhat dated—all data was entered manually and the only integrations were for telecommunications (paging and emailing) purposes.

Geisinger began the transition to a service management model in 2016, with over 800 IT employees taking the ITIL Version 3 Foundations Course and Certification in preparation. They wanted to modernize and transform the way they deliver services to their customers, and needed a comprehensive ITSM tool to enable productivity and process improvements in order to do so.

The Geisinger’s leadership and internal IT teams developed an aggressive proposed timeline:

Q1: Implement a base set of ITIL functions, including:

  • Event

  • Incident

  • Problem

  • Request

  • Change

  • Discovery/CMDB

Q2: Implement Events and Incidents and Associated CMDB to begin the process of recording metrics.

Q3: Complete installation of all modules and retire the previously used Remedy toolset.

Q4: Ensure that the Geisinger team could allow for continuous service improvements and metrics.

Geisinger wanted to stick to their accelerated timeline without having to settle for a customized version of ServiceNow, which proved to be a challenge. A typical CMDB project can take 12 to 18 months before a team can be fully self-sufficient, with larger enterprise organizations utilizing multi-year projects to get into a steady state. 


In their initial attempt at the CMDB implementation, the Geisinger team ended with a limited CMDB after just four months of training and process planning. Combined with their lack of previous ServiceNow experience, the team was faced with many roadblocks. 

Geisinger enlisted Glidefast for their second round of implementation, identifying three primary areas of difficulty:

Requirements Gathering

When Geisinger first started their ServiceNow journey, they were unsure what their requirements were. The initial implementation was slated to start with 20 IT requests so that no workflows were lost in the transition from Remedy, but these workflows were not very well developed at the time, and requesters had a tough time understanding what information was needed on the forms. With no formal governance process or service catalog in place, the team needed assistance  gathering those requirements for development to ensure they were understanding the needs and asks from form owners and requesters.

Organizational Change

Implementing ServiceNow with the mindset of defining structure and processes while simultaneously developing and implementing a new platform proved to be a challenge. There was a large learning curve for teams to adapt their processes to work within the tool, rather than changing the functionalities of ServiceNow to fit within their previously-determined processes. Additionally, without determining ownership over the different processes in the early stages of the ServiceNow implementation, there were difficulties with decision making and structure in regards to managing workflows. Nothing was normalized or standardized within their previous platform. They had attempted to create workstreams in ServiceNow for each of their processes and review decisions needed, but it was difficult to build out and implement workflows from scratch.


Geisinger was transitioning from a fully-customized tool that was developed and maintained internally to a new, more powerful platform with countless capabilities.


ServiceNow required more time and hands-on experience to understand, and employees had to unlearn former best practices in order to understand how to properly develop and customize the new system.

The GlideFast Consulting


Working alongside Glidefast, the Geisinger team was able to work through numerous reimplementations of all of their ITSM modules. Each module was broken down individually to understand the areas of improvement, allowing for in-depth reimplementation processes. 


Additionally, Glidefast spearheaded the training of their current staff and remained on staff with the ITSM team for two years. From improved and more accurate data reporting to refined service portals and intake incident processes for the service desk, Glidefast was able to implement, adjust, and reimplement solutions to help Geisinger address their specific needs.

Utilizing and building off of the out-of-box ServiceNow solution opened up an array of opportunities for the Geisinger team. In total, seven active modules were implemented into Geisinger’s platform, including three different knowledge bases and a mobile app launch. 

Throughout the implementation process, Glidefast was able to guide Geisinger step-by-step as they worked together to reimplement their modules to the out-of-the-box tables and toolset, providing a beneficial learning experience and allowing the team to understand how to configure modules as needed.


The Results

As of August 2020, all custom tables have been 100% removed from the Geisinger platform, with the team now fully utilizing out-of-the-box tables. CMDB was successfully implemented through the incorporation of ServiceNow Discovery and Microsoft’s System Center Configuration Manager (SCCM) plugin, resulting in more than 7 million new records in Geisinger’s CMDB.

All of the platform improvements have led to increased user adoption as GlideFast worked to expand the ServiceNow solution set to other organizational business units. Employees now have the ability to automate workflows, utilize approvals, and build dashboards to view and understand data. 

Integrating Qualys with ServiceNow dramatically improved the company’s productivity. The client’s staff no longer had to manually search Qualys and generate ITIL tickets for Vulnerability Response, a process that took an average of thirty minutes per ticket. Now, vulnerability tickets are automatically created and closed by the Qualys integration, completely alleviating IT staff of the ticket assignment process. As the company’s staff created an average of 25-30 tickets per month, GlideFast Consulting’s solution saved the company up to 15 hours of manual work per month. 

The client deemed this a highly successful partnership and engaged GlideFast Consulting for additional services to implement ServiceNow Governance, Risk, and Compliance (GRC) in their instance.

Their newly developed Knowledge Management module provided the solutions needed to maintain a single source of information across multiple departments. Three knowledge bases were developed for Geisinger; an IT knowledge base; a portal knowledge base; and a portal emergency alert knowledge base allowing approved users to quickly send emergency alerts to the team via the service portal. There are currently over 1,900 published articles across all three of the team’s knowledge bases.


The volume of intake that Geisinger processes on a monthly basis has also increased exponentially with the incorporation of ServiceNow. Within the Incident Management module, there were nearly 24,000 incidents created, with more than 200 request forms being utilized throughout this process. More catalog requests and enhancements have also led to an increase in demand for ServiceNow development and information on new modules from numerous non-IT areas within the company, with over 15,000 requested items submitted over the course of one month.

As a result, GlideFast’s current role is to continue optimizing the recently-implemented solution set, with a focus on increased efficiency and cost savings. An HR Service Delivery suite is planned for development, allowing Geisinger to optimize and automate HR processes and keeping access to all services in a single, easy-to-access platform. A Virtual Agent module is also in the works, further simplifying the process of obtaining information through automated systems.  
GlideFast developers are no longer on staff full time, but Geisinger continues to foster a long-term partnership for projects and development. When overwhelming timelines are introduced that cannot fit within Geisinger’s bandwidth, GlideFast is able to step in and assist.

Requested items submitted over the course of one month

Published articles across knowledge bases

Incidents created within Incident Management module

Request forms being utilized throughout process

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