Sunday, October 30, 2011

Remote Support Tool Bomgar & ServiceNow Integration

Scenario 1: Start Bomgar Session from ServiceNow

In this scenario a service desk representative is taking a call with an end user and submitting an incident on their behalf.  At some point the service desk rep decides to start a remote support session using Bomgar from the submitted ServiceNow incident record.

In the picture above, the Bomgar Information popup window is displayed on the screen after the Bomgar Session Key button has been clicked.  There are three options on popup window that can be used to pass the information to the end user to begin the Bomgar session. 
  • Session Key:  The end user can take the session key read to them by the service desk representative and either go to the Bomgar appliance website or the Bomgar module and place it in the session key field.

  • URL: If the end user and service desk representative are already chatting in ServiceNow for example, the service desk rep can send them URL provided and the end user can use that to start the session.
  • Email Button: If the service desk rep decides they want to email the information to the end user, they can click the button titled “Click to email link to caller” and that will send the user in the Caller field the instructions on how to start the session.
Once the end user starts the Bomgar session, it will show up in the service desk representative’s personal queue on their Bomgar Appliance.  It also passes over some information including the short description and sys_id of the incident record.

Scenario 2: Self-Service Bomgar Click to Chat

In this scenario, an end user submits an incident on ServiceNow using either a CMS portal or the out of box service catalog via a record producer.  Once the user submits the incident they have a Get Support Now button available.

After the end user clicks the “Get Support Now” button, the end user is prompted with a message notifying them what user helped them last, and the option to choose a specific representative to help them or just to wait for the next available rep.  

Once the user chooses one of the options, the chat session is started inside the ServiceNow frame.

At this point, the user is waiting for an available service desk representative to accept the chat session.  In the rep’s Bomgar appliance, this user has been put in the General queue allowing any rep to claim this session.  Once again the short description, caller’s name, and sys_id from the incident have been passed into Bomgar. 

During the Bomgar Session

·         Screen Sharing
·         Secure File Transfer
·         Command Prompt Connection
·         Pull back Advanced System Information
·         Log work notes
·         Chat with other service desk representatives and end user


Following the Session

After the session has been completed, the end user is prompted with a Customer Exit Survey.  

Once the survey has been completed and the service desk representative has ended the session, the survey results and session information including duration, basic system information, chat dialogue, and any work notes captured during the session are inserted in ServiceNow and tied via related lists with the incident that generated the Bomgar session.


Leveraging ServiceNow’s reporting engine, it is easy to setup reports to show things like the breakdown of sessions by incident category, sessions by service desk representative, customer exit survey responses and more.


Bomgar Jump Technology

Installing Bomgar's Jump Client gives you unattended access to any system Bomgar supports anywhere in the world.  You can deploy the Jump Client during a Bomgar session, or you can email the client download to multiple computers at once. Once the Jump Client is installed, the technician can Jump to that remote system and provide unattended support anytime.

Also, by installing Jumpoints within each of your network locations, you can access unattended Windows desktops or servers on these networks, without installing software on each end system. The Jumpoint acts as a secure conduit to the remote network enabling you to gain remote access easily to unattended systems.

There are two ways in ServiceNow to utilize this functionality:
  • From an incident record, you can click on the Bomgar macro next to the Configuration item field and start a session

  • There is also a button on each configuration item record

Custom Properties Page

This integration is managed from a properties page and makes it easy to setup after the update set is installed.

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

Automated Provisioning & Profile Maintenance – Third Party Access

Recently I had the opportunity to work with a couple other Fruition developers to deliver a custom Third Party Access Portal, also known as 3PA, to help an international beverage company's third party users (e.g. customers, bottlers) effectively request and sustain access to key applications.  The 3PA portal was to replace their current solution that was not only over extended to far more 3rd parties than originally intended, but was associated with user dissatisfaction, increased support cost, and unfavorable company perception.

One of the main objectives of the project was to enhance the user experience through a simplified user interface.  Third party users can utilize this portal to manage their user profile, request access to applications, and manage their password.  Even though the portal is aimed for external users with the goal to “make their company easier to do business with,” internal employees can also use the interface to invite new or existing users to applications, view access reports, and manage access requests.

Not only does 3PA allow for the external users to have a simplified interface to request access to applications, but similarly streamlines the process of onboarding a new application or editing an existing one.  Utilizing a single form 3PA provides a central location for application information including reminder/expiration/escalation time values for tasks and approvals, display name and image for the portal, relationship to the corresponding business service in the CMDB, and more.   

This one form also allows the application owner to add or edit:
·         Application administrators
·         Related Active Directory groups that grant specific user access to that application
·         Multi-layers of access request approvers and groups based by application and based by application question values
·         Application specific questions to be asked when a user registers
·         Pre-approval rules to automate approvals based on third party user’s email domain
·         Multi-layers of manual tasks and/or automated access provisioning tasks
·         Users that have been invited to register for the application
·         Users that have access to the application

To simplify the user experience of onboarding an application, the application dynamically creates a service catalog item and leverages ServiceNow’s request management capabilities to drive the request process while utilizing one “general” workflow for all applications.  This allows application owners to setup their application without having service catalog, workflow, and general admin experience.
Another objective was to decrease the amount of time it took to provision a user’s application access.  In order to do this, 3PA is integrated with their identity management solution which allows real-time application access provisioning and user creation and profile update in Active Directory and SAP.

The second key part of the portal is the automation of maintenance to a third party user’s profile.  An external user can manage their profile information and password by submitting requests which initiates web service calls and updates their active directory account in real-time.  Below is a submitted profile change request that compares the previous and updated values, allowing a user not only to follow their request from submission to approval to completion, but also compare and track when they update certain values. 

·              Built on top of the ServiceNow SaaS Platform integrating CMDB, Request, User Account, SLA and Access Management
·              Integrates with their Identity Management solution to allow for real-time user account information update/creation and application access provisioning in Active Directory
·              Portal enhances the user experience through a simplified user interface, simplified processes, and automates the registration and profile maintenance processes

Project Team:
Chris Dauw (Director of Products), Engagement Manager
Tom Sobczak (Director of Custom Applications), Project Manager
Sal Costa, Senior Architect
Shane Brazeal, Senior Developer
Darrin Achtman, Developer
Dustin Martin, Technical Analyst