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Executive Spotlight: Jonathan Alboum, ServiceNow Federal CTO

Executive Spotlight: Jonathan Alboum, ServiceNow Federal CTO - top government contractors - best government contracting event

Jonathan Alboum, federal chief technology officer at ServiceNow, recently spoke with ExecutiveBiz regarding the attributes of the mission that attracted him to the company as well as the challenges that continue to impact federal agencies as emerging technologies and innovation change our business during the latest Executive Spotlight interview.

You can read the full Executive Spotlight interview with Jonathan Alboum below:

ExecutiveBiz: Congrats on ServiceNow’s recent success in the federal market. Why did you want to join the company and what were the attributes of its mission that attracted you to the CTO role? What do you hope to accomplish with the company?

Jonathan Alboum: “I’ve been with ServiceNow for three years and I love my job. My experience at the company has been rewarding, both personally and professionally.

I am fortunate to work with so many great people and we’ve experienced incredible growth during my tenure. Today, we are working in over 350 federal agencies and have amazing momentum as we continue to expand our business.

ServiceNow is about putting our customers first and making a real difference in the communities that we serve all over the world. I’m grateful for the opportunity to be a part of that and contribute in my own way.

Every day, I have the opportunity to impact projects that have a governmentwide influence.  I work with our customers and partners, helping them to see how ServiceNow can help out with their toughest challenges, like digital transformation, customer experience, and cybersecurity.

For instance, the concept of hyper-automation has the potential to completely change the way people interact with their government. That’s an area that ServiceNow has been leading in for quite some time.

One of the things that I get to do in this job is share stories from our customers about how ServiceNow is making it easy for agencies to embrace emerging technologies, like hyper-automation, as I interact with organizations that have a lot of influence across the government space.

Prior to joining ServiceNow, I worked in the federal government for many years as a chief information officer at a number of agencies, including as the CIO of the Department of Agriculture.

An important aspect of my role with ServiceNow is to share my experiences as an executive in the federal government to help our teams deliver for their clients. I help translate the things we do very well at ServiceNow, like connecting people, systems and breaking down silos, into solutions for problems that all agencies face as they deliver on their missions.”

ExecutiveBiz: With federal agencies working to implement the latest trends in technology such as AI, 5G, cloud and many others, what are your thoughts on the success and challenges that government agencies are dealing with to stay ahead of innovation to establish the U.S. as THE global leader?

Jonathan Alboum: “If you look at the last decade, you see the tremendous progress that government agencies made in their modernization efforts. There are a lot of great success stories about moving systems to the cloud and embracing software as a service capability, especially since the start of the pandemic.

We all had to transition to remote work when COVID hit, and federal agencies were quick to change their operating models. That’s all a result of their strong focus on modernization. There are so many great successes and stories from this time.

The next big challenge is ensuring that all these different capabilities we recently acquired are actually supporting agency missions. These technologies are often disconnected. When not fully leveraged, there are many missed opportunities.

A huge benefit of ServiceNow is its ability to connect things.  An agency’s technologies, systems, and data can come together on the NOW platform to integrate services, providing employees and customers with great experiences and creating visible value.

Following the pandemic, the public expects this from all service providers, including the government. This is the basis for the next phase of public sector modernization. The future is about transforming the way we do our work, moving our manual processes to digital processes and driving advanced automation in support of a citizen-centric, anticipatory government.

Nevertheless, cybersecurity remains a significant challenge. We never will fully overcome the volume of threats out there today and new ones are emerging all the time.  ServiceNow is working with CIOs and CISOs across government to help them manage data and workflows. By applying this focus to integrated risk management and security operations, agencies are better able to prioritize and manage pervasive cyber risks.

Ultimately, it’s important to remember that all government IT modernization and digital transformation initiatives come back to the fact that behind every mission outcome is a process that drives experiences.

ServiceNow works across government to digitize siloed processes – connecting and automating them so that government workflows. By doing so, we are dramatically increasing value and improving experiences for federal employees and the people they serve.”

ExecutiveBiz: With the influence of emerging technologies impacting every aspect of business, how has ServiceNow been able to drive digital transformation efforts to stay ahead of innovation in the federal landscape?

Jonathan Alboum: “I think the adoption of low code capabilities can really speed the government’s digital transformation efforts. As a CIO, my teams spent lots of time, effort, and budget building custom systems because that was what we knew how to do. In retrospect, many of the requirements could be met on today’s low code platforms.

Low code offers the opportunity for non-IT professionals to create applications and build workflows that meet their program requirements. This is a really significant development. Not only is this an efficient way to meet unique needs, but low code apps can also be developed very fast, and the work doesn’t need to flow through the central IT office. There are no bottlenecks or CIO hoops to jump through.

This is all possible using ServiceNow’s low code tools. With our Creator Workflows, low code applications can be easily built by anyone with some basic training.

I’d also note that ServiceNow is unique because our platform is a single piece of technology. It’s one architecture and one database. It’s not a lot of different technologies that have been cobbled together over time in a loosely connected architecture. It’s a single thing.

So, low code apps built on ServiceNow can connect with any of your existing ServiceNow data, making this a powerful approach to digital transformation.”

ExecutiveBiz: What are the core values that are important to your company’s culture? What’s driven your success in such a competitive market?

Jonathan Alboum: “Our company has a great set of core values based on the idea that we win as a team and create belonging so that everyone at ServiceNow feels at home. Our goal is to wow our customers, while always staying hungry and humble.

While we’ve had great success in the recent past, we recognize that the best is yet to come. ServiceNow is really just getting started in the federal market.

One of the sayings that we have is, ‘The world works with ServiceNow.’ There’s so much we can do to help transform the public sector. As an organization, we are energized about the role we play in changing the way people interact with and think about federal agencies. ServiceNow is rebuilding trust in government, one experience at a time.

We have so many dedicated customers that use the NOW platform to better their organizations. Yet, we have so much more that we can do with them moving forward. Our ability to continue to grow is unrivaled, which feeds into my belief that ServiceNow will be the defining enterprise software company of the 21st century and that we will really change the world.

Everyone at ServiceNow feels like they are part of a once in a once-in-a-generation opportunity. This creates an engaged workforce, filled with people who are dedicated and focused on serving their customers.

Our people are viewed as experts across the industry. I am humbled to be a part of ServiceNow and to work together with the federal government to address the biggest challenges of our day.”

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