Power Up Your Manufacturing with ServiceNow’s OT Solution
ServiceNow

Power Up Your Manufacturing with ServiceNow’s OT Solution

By: Hari Krishna Aeda

Publish Date: February 28, 2024

The new wave of innovation driven by Industry 4.0 is sweeping through the industrial manufacturing landscape, promising advancements in manufacturing and technology. This shift requires hyper-efficient manufacturing capabilities that transcend geographical boundaries, offering exciting opportunities for businesses across various sectors. Within the intricate infrastructure of modern manufacturing plants, two key technological pillars stand tall: operational technology (OT) and information technology (IT).

OT encompasses many essential equipment, including supervisory control and data acquisition (SCADA) systems, programmable logic controllers (PLC), measurement devices, and human-machine interfaces. These elements work in tandem to ensure seamless plant operations while safeguarding against potential hazards by adhering to predefined process parameters and safety protocols.

Yet, amidst this interconnectedness lies a looming threat: cyber-attacks. As factories become increasingly digitized, they are more susceptible to malicious intrusion, risking unplanned downtime and jeopardizing the safety of personnel and assets. Given these challenges, the imperative for robust OT management has never been more apparent.

ServiceNow for the Smart Factory

ServiceNow addresses these pressing concerns with its Operation Technology Foundation – a comprehensive solution designed to fortify OT infrastructure and mitigate cybersecurity risks. With ServiceNow’s innovative approach, today’s factories can navigate the complexities, ensuring uninterrupted operations and safeguarding against potential threats to both productivity and safety.

One of the critical components of ServiceNow’s offering is the Manufacturing Connected Workforce application. This application transforms how employees engage with their work, offering a more intuitive and streamlined approach to daily tasks. Equipped with ServiceNow, your workforce workday has access to the necessary tools, information, and insights conveniently accessible in one place.

Moreover, ServiceNow accelerates the modernization of OT operations through low-code and no-code applications. Organizations can tailor these applications to their unique needs: incident management, asset inventory, collaborative monitoring, extended troubleshooting, problem-solving, or in-depth situational analysis. With ServiceNow, the possibilities for enhancing manufacturing processes are limitless.

Navigating the Convergence of OT and IT:

However, the convergence of OT and IT in the manufacturing environment presents its own set of challenges. Keeping track of all OT assets amidst this convergence becomes increasingly complex. Here’s a quick look at how ServiceNow helps unify IT and OT assets into a single database:

  • Operational Technology Management
      Provides a visual map of the status and dependencies of OT assets. You can use it to keep OT systems secure and up and running and connect them to digital workflows and production processes.

 

  • Asset Management
      Tracks inventory, financial, and contractual details of hardware, devices, and non-IT assets throughout their lifecycle. You can use workflows to handle asset requests, obtain approvals, issue chargebacks, and provision services.

 

  • Configuration Management Database (CMDB)
      Centralizes all configuration information, helping leaders better understand critical CIs and their relationships. You can also import and integrate third-party data into CMDB classes and properties. These classes align with the levels of the Perdue model, providing a structured approach to OT asset management. By mapping OT assets to the Perdue model and integrating them into the CMDB, ServiceNow enables organizations to gain comprehensive visibility and control over their entire asset landscape.

 

ServiceNow’s incorporation of OT assets alongside traditional IT assets aligning with the various levels of the Purdue model culminates in the ServiceNow Industrial workspace, a centralized platform that offers a comprehensive view of all OT assets.

The Benefits

  • It empowers organizations to contextualize and safeguard their operational technology systems, enabling connectivity with digital workflows and swift responses to emerging threats.
  • It enhances core operations by digitizing and streamlining standard operating procedures (SOPs), facilitating shared knowledge and collaboration across the enterprise.
  • It empowers factory workers by equipping them with digital tools and knowledge, enabling them to adapt, collaborate, and excel in rapidly evolving conditions.

 

ServiceNow Manufacturing Solution – Operation Technology Foundation

The Perdue Model serves as a guiding framework for OT assets, delineating the various levels within an industrial environment. Level 4/5 represents the Enterprise Zone at the apex, encompassing the corporate network where overarching organizational operations occur. Level 3.5 designates the Demilitarized Zone (DMZ), acting as a buffer between the OT and corporate networks, safeguarding critical systems. Further down, Level 3 delineates the Manufacturing Operations Systems Zone, housing the operation and control systems vital for production processes. Continuing the descent, Level 2 marks the Control Systems Zone, home to supervisory control systems overseeing operational functions. At Level 1, the Intelligent Devices Zone accommodates process control systems, while Level 0 constitutes the Physical Process Zone, representing the physical machinery and processes at the heart of industrial operations.

Perdue Model

Perdue Model

OT Assets Population in ServiceNow CMDB

OT Assets Population in ServiceNow CMDB

Within ServiceNow’s CMDB, the population of OT assets unfolds through a meticulous process. OT assets, including network infrastructure, security apparatus, backup/recovery mechanisms, monitoring tools, and management systems, are systematically scanned and collected from the OT network. These tools interface with ServiceNow via Service Graph connectors, facilitating the seamless transfer of OT asset data into the CMDB. Once within the CMDB, this data undergoes mapping to corresponding OT classes, facilitating its integration and organization within the database. As a result, the CMDB emerges as the singular source of truth for all OT assets, offering a centralized repository for comprehensive asset management.

Conclusion

The benefits of ServiceNow’s Operation Technology Foundation extend beyond operational improvements. Organizations can ensure the integrity and confidentiality of their OT assets by contextualizing and safeguarding OT systems, connecting to digital workflows, and responding swiftly to threats. Moreover, by providing a unified platform for IT and OT assets, ServiceNow enables manufacturing companies to enhance their operational continuity and resilience in the face of evolving cyber threats.

As a ServiceNow partner, working extensively with manufacturers worldwide, YASH Technologies can help you leverage OT management to improve productivity, redefine operations, and modernize and optimize your operational technology management environment, connecting people, processes, knowledge, and technologies on the Now platform. Our unique ServiceNow implementation approach and domain expertise have helped businesses customize the platform to meet unique business requirements and reimagine change management and governance processes.

Related Posts.

Manufacturing , Manufacturing Indusry , ServiceNow

Taming the Supply Chain Beast: How ServiceNow Manages the Manufacturing Lifeline

Bharat Ram Kumar Nutakki Satya Narayana Murty Tummala

ServiceNow Vendor Risk Management , Servicenow VRM , Vendor Risk Management
ServiceNow Platform
ServiceNow , ServiceNow Platform
Compliance , Governance , Risk , Risk Management , ServiceNow , ServiceNow GRC
Create Sales Orders from PDF/Unstructured Data
BFSI , ServiceNow , ServiceNow ITSM
BFSI Organizations , CSM , Customer Service Management , ServiceNow
5 Best Practices to Digital Transformation in BFSI and How ServiceNow Helps
BFSI , Digital Transformation , ServiceNow
BFSI Industry , Digital Transformation , ServiceNow
BFSI , Digital Transformation , ServiceNow