Welcome to this exclusive interview with Bill McDermott, Chairman and CEO of ServiceNow, as part of the Acceleration Economy Cloud Wars Top 10 CEO Outlook 2024 series. When McDermott met with Bob Evans, he addressed topics including customer mindset, the ServiceNow platform as a means to transform business, and GenAI.
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Customer Confidence and Mindset (01:14)
The AI revolution accelerated customers’ understanding that they need to get today’s “technology force” right, McDermott says. Everything’s up for grabs if companies don’t transform digitally and to give employees back some of their time and offload some of the “soul-crushing” work to computers.
McDermott’s Priorities for ServiceNow (2:36)
McDermott came to ServiceNow to make it the defining enterprise software company of the 21st century, and being born in the cloud gives the company a great advantage. The company has great pride that drives engineers to build the best platform in the world to support digital transformation, to give employees a great experience so they’re inspired to work for your company, and to serve customers in any channel “beautifully.” Today, all companies need to be software companies or “creators.” The ServiceNow platform enables customers to accommodate old, non-cloud architectures as they build, innovate, and grow again on its platform.
Evolving Customer Relationships (05:26)
Providing a platform for engineers to do their best work and start building immediately instead of all the setup work required on other platforms — that’s a 35% to 40% productivity improvement. They can build net-new applications, ideas, and innovations to serve customers and employees and inspire your ecosystem.
C-Suite Engagement (7:41)
ServiceNow has built on its strong suit in technology and CIO relationships to engage the C-suite more broadly on how to digitally transform a company. If a company such as ServiceNow can help a drug manufacturer take the average time to bring a new drug to market from 6.6 years on average to half that time, that would change the industry. “We’re talking about business transformation at mass scale for industries all over the world, and that’s where we need to be playing.”
Dreaming Big Dreams (10:41)
ServiceNow as a company dreams big dreams and builds the technology to make them happen. McDermott describes himself as a dreamer. He came to ServiceNow with a dream and “explained to people that hidden in their dream is also their destiny.”
AI permits people to rethink the status quo and invent something that doesn’t exist yet. Something he admires about the ServiceNow platform is that it rethinks the status quo without abandoning it. “We go in there and clean up the mess, but then take them to the promised land.”
Ecosystem Expansion (12:50)
ServiceNow has a five-year strategic deal with Visa to transform its whole payment services business, considering generative AI as a solution for end-to-end resolution. The success with Visa will become “a template for ecosystem expansion, where great brands and great companies are going to think about platforms like ServiceNow as a strategic weapon to advance their customer service orientation,” McDermott says.
CEO Mindset (19:05)
It’s important to look at the world with optimism and opportunity. McDermott believes that CEOs understand this. He highlights companies in various industries that exemplify this by taking on an AI platform approach to improving lives and ensuring that the work humans do matters.
“We all want to make a difference. We all want to be inspired. And I’m so proud of the CEOs that I’ve had the pleasure of working with,” McDermott shares.
Transforming Customer Service (21:28)
ServiceNow is cautious to avoid disrupting customers’ established strategies and investments but, at the same time, offers the ability to bridge gaps. Addressing the evolution of customer service and the cloud, he emphasizes the importance of meeting customers where they are, be it online or in person. He shares an experience when a CEO said that one-third of customers who cannot find what they want on a first visit will never come back. GenAI and mobile offerings are critical to providing consistent, personalized services across channels.
GenAI Possibilities (24:46)
There was a meeting in Denver that McDermott was attending, and a notable coffee company had a location in the hotel he was staying at. He incorrectly ordered from a location across the street. Through ServiceNow, the order is promptly canceled as the system recognizes the location, confirming that he is in the hotel next to the counter. All accounting is handled, a refund is issued and a new charge is applied. That is Gen AI, fully functional on the ServiceNow platform today.