IntegrityBit: Playbooks for Customer Service & Guided Decisions

Customer Service Management  |  Playbooks for Customer Service & Guided Decisions
By: Simon D’Orsi


What are Playbooks for Customer Service Management?
Playbooks provide guidance for fulfilling a request, completing a form, or resolving a customer service case. This guidance is provided in the form of step-by-step instructions intended to walk agents through a series of predetermined tasks. Playbooks are a visual representation of a workflow that needs to be completed for the specified task.

What are Guided Decisions for Customer Service Management?
Guided Decisions use information provided by service agents to recommend actions and facilitate the resolution process. This tool is a flow structured as a decision tree that prompts several questions to the agent about the case. It recommends steps to troubleshoot the issue or suggests a solution based on the answers given. Guided Decisions can be affiliated with Playbooks or Recommended Actions to utilize the decision tree within a workspace.


How does this benefit agents working within ServiceNow?

Playbooks break workflows up into multiple stages with activities for an agent to complete. This allows a simple UI to display the necessary steps and choose the jobs needed to fulfill the activity. The ability to mark a group of activities as complete creates an intuitive and fluid path to solve customer problems quickly and efficiently.

Using Guided Decisions helps to improve first contact resolution by dynamically guiding agents along the optimal path to resolve complex cases. It also encourages the consolidation of workload and research to the ServiceNow Platform by having the ability to author decision trees to guide agents. By doing so, agents can remain on the platform without “swivel-chair processes” of rapidly switching between different systems to spend time searching for complicated cases, rather than working towards a solution.

Where do I get these capabilities?

To utilize Playbooks for customer service and guided decisions, simply install the necessary plugins from the ServiceNow store. Playbook plugins for use with CSM include Customer Service (com.sn_customerservice), Dynamic Related Records (com.snc.uib.sn_dyn_rel_rec), and Playbook Experience (com.playbook_experience). There are a few out-of-the-box playbook applications as well. These include the Case Playbook for Onboard, Complaints, and Product Support. If you are to use the playbooks listed, you will also need the Playbooks for Customer Service Management (com.sn_csm_playbook) and Customer Service Case Types (com.snc.csm_case_types) plugins. Guided Decisions are contained within the Guided Decisions Experience application (sn_ga_exp). For further instructions, check out the corresponding ServiceNow documentation for steps on installation and implementation linked at the end of this document.

The future of Playbooks in CSM

Since the future of tools for data analysis and processing are becoming increasingly complex, automation is becoming a vital part of these systems. For companies that use platforms like ServiceNow to thrive, automation needs to be implemented to keep up with advancing technology while providing a pleasant experience for the customer and agent alike.

Playbooks utilize automation in this exact way to effectively resolve issues as they appear. Along with playbooks being used in areas besides CSM, ServiceNow patch notes suggest future support and dependent fixes in the future. According to these patch notes, Playbooks have been updated from before the Rome release in 2021 all the way to the current Vancouver version on November 2023 (currently Nov. 2, 2023, as of writing this). Between its usage of automation and fixes from ServiceNow, this shows a promising future for playbook development and support on the platform.