ServiceNow has released four emergency response apps to help public and private sector customers around the globe navigate COVID-19 crisis management, one of which has been developed and donated by the Washington State Department of Health. 

“In this battle to flatten the COVID-19 curve, none of us is as smart as all of us,” said Bill McDermott, president and chief executive officer of ServiceNow, in a recent blog post. “These ServiceNow applications will enable emergency outreach, self-reporting and exposure management, which are precisely what organizations need to do right now to help people get through this crisis.

“We are particularly proud to partner with Washington State’s Department of Health to make an emergency operations app, which they developed on the Now Platform, available to all government agencies fighting this pandemic. This is all about sharing best practices, which is why we’ll do everything we can to get the Washington State app in use everywhere.”

The four community apps aim to help ServiceNow customers, including businesses and government agencies, deal with complex emergency response workflows. Now available at, customers can access these apps free of charge from anywhere. While the app donated by the Washington State Department of Health will remain available at no cost indefinitely, the three apps developed by ServiceNow – Employee Outreach, Employee Self Report and Employee Exposure Management – can be accessed free of charge through Sept. 3, 2020, ServiceNow confirmed in an email to IT World Canada. 

ServiceNow Employee Self Report app. Source: ServiceNow

The Emergency Outreach app is an emergency response tool that uses the Now Platform to help enterprises connect with employees to evaluate the impact of the virus’s ongoing impact on the business. Through the app, employers can reach out to their employees by email to provide safety measures and related information and request a response from them to confirm where they are located and if they are safe. Businesses can also use the company’s Now Mobile app to send push notifications to their employees and receive responses via mobile. The Emergency Self Report app developed by the company helps employees notify their respective employers that they are self-quarantined and provides information as to when they will return to work. The third app developed internally, Emergency Exposure Management is a workflow tool that assists employers to identify employees who might have been exposed based on any infected employee’s job location and meetings history. 

Washington State’s Department of Health, a customer of ServiceNow, initially created the Emergency Response Operations app on the Now Platform for the purpose of managing their own response to the pandemic. Working with ServiceNow, it has now made the app available to all government entities. 

Emergency Response Operations app. Source: ServiceNow.

“As the epicenter for COVID-19 in the U.S., the State of Washington’s agencies, emergency responders and public health professionals had to rapidly assemble an incident management structure to lead outbreak response and mitigate the spread and impact,” indicated Jennifer McNamara, chief information officer of the Washington State Department of Health, who was quoted in ServiceNow’s blog. “Leveraging ServiceNow’s Now Platform, we were able to digitize processes that allowed us to quickly resource critical Incident Management Team positions. This automated a manual and labour-intensive process that was fraught with errors while also providing real-time visibility into resource allocations. Improved accountability will allow us to secure the maximum federal reimbursement for incident expenditures. We are building on the success of this phase with the automation of the other Incident Management Functions such as resource demobilization, planning, logistics, and finance.”

In addition to these apps, ServiceNow’s COVID-19 response plan also includes the introduction of a customer care plan which includes a commitment to maintaining virtually 100 per cent uptime for ServiceNow instances; a Now Community forum to facilitate interaction among ServiceNow partners and customers; and an Apps Suggestions portal that allows its partners and customers to provide their ideas for apps or features related to COVID-19.

The company has also turned its Knowledge 2020 conference into an online-only event, which is scheduled to start on May 5. 


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