ServiceNow Archiving Best Practices

Following ServiceNow data archiving best practices is fundamental for ServiceNow data management. A healthy archiving policy creates a systematic approach for moving inactive data into archives for future use. 

Over time, the data volumes in ServiceNow tables grow, leading to slow queries, difficulties in compliance and data management, and a less-than-optimal user experience. 

Thus, users must archive inactive data to overcome these issues and maintain a healthy ServiceNow instance. 

In this blog, we’ll explore the benefits of, and best practices for efficiently archiving inactive ServiceNow data and optimally leverage its various benefits. 

Table of Contents:

ServiceNow Data Archiving Best Practices

Following these best practices helps organizations implement a healthy archival process:

Consider archiving off-platform

By archiving data off-platform, organizations can avoid additional storage fees, support fast retrieval of archived data, and improve platform performance significantly.

Off-platform archiving is the recommended approach for organizations that generate lots of ServiceNow data and/or organizations with extensive analytics, reporting and other data-driven requirements. 

ServiceNow’s default archiving features only permits organizations to archive data within archive tables hosted within their ServiceNow platform.

Archiving off-platform means archived records can be stored within an organization’s preferred repository, that can be easily integrated with third party solutions. 

This benefits organizations by limiting the amount of data stored within the ServiceNow platform, helping them to avoid incurring additional storage fees that exceed that of purpose-built storage solutions.

It also means that archived records can easily be fed into solutions for analytics, reporting, business intelligence, artificial intelligence and machine learning, to support any use cases that leverage historical data.

This helps ServiceNow users overcome commonly faced difficulties in getting data out of the platform.

Perspectium is an excellent solution that supports off-platform, condition-based archiving for ServiceNow data.

Develop an archiving policy & sync it to data lifecycle management

It’s essential to create a comprehensive archiving policy that outlines the archiving criteria, processes, roles, and access conditions. 

Since data archiving impacts the data’s lifecycle, users must synchronize it with their data lifecycle management strategy. They must consider how long they wish to retain the archived data and when it should be deleted.

Identify and sort the tables where archiving is required

It’s best to start by reviewing the tables, their data and creating an inventory. By sorting data into categories, users can decide which data is essential for current operations and what can be archived. 

The Incident table is a good choice for archiving because it stores a continuous stream of new records. Other notable archiving candidates include Problem, Change, Knowledge and CMDB tables. 

Determine when to archive a record

Requirements as to when a record should be archived will vary from organization to organization, so organizations should consider the context in which a record is deemed suitable for archiving. 

For example, closed cases over 3 months old may have no immediate value in one organization. Whereas in another, periodic analysis of closed cases may mean the organization wants to retain such records in active tables for a longer period. 

Some archiving solutions archive ServiceNow data off-platform, in their preferred repository – however this is not available in ServiceNow’s default archiving feature. In this case, archived records can be easily fed into purpose-built solutions for analytics, reporting, etc.

This allows organizations to archive more frequently, as the data can be made available to relevant solutions more easily.

Once the conditions in which records should be archived, organizations can use archive rules – or condition-based logic – to dynamically archive records that are considered inactive. 

Capture performance metrics before and after archiving

Understanding how the volumes of data in active tables affects performance can better inform an organization’s archiving strategy. 

By capturing performance metrics before and after an archiving event, organizations can use this information to iterate their archival policy, determine when archiving is necessary and prevent performance degradation in future.

What Are the Benefits of Archiving ServiceNow Data Off-platform?

Organizations can archive their mission-critical data off-platform, for future use with secure and automated data archiving solutions like Perspectium’s Data Archive for ServiceNow.  

The most notable benefits of archiving ServiceNow data off-platform are:

  • Increased storage capacity and reduced costs – ServiceNow’s default archiving feature only moves data to archive tables existing within the platform.
    As such, it is not a solution for managing storage capacity and/or avoiding incurring additional storage fees.
    With off-platform archiving, the data is moved out of ServiceNow, and into purpose-built repositories where storage is cheaper.
  • Faster, more efficient backups – Data archiving improves the Platform’s backup and recovery capabilities.
    By removing inactive/stale data from the platform, the size of newly created backups is smaller and the process can be completed more quickly whilst consuming fewer resources.  
  • Improved system performance – By reducing the amount of data stored on the platform, performance is improved as there is less load on the system.
    Queries can be completed more quickly and efficiently, benefiting system performance. 
  • Improved data security – When data remains within active circulation, it remains vulnerable to unauthorized access, cyberattacks, and inadvertent data breaches.
    Archiving older, less frequently accessed data isolates it from the day-to-day operations of your organization, creating an additional layer of protection.

How to Archive ServiceNow Data Off-Platform

For ServiceNow users that wish to enjoy the benefits of off-platform archiving, ServiceNow partners Perspectium provide the solution – Data Archive for ServiceNow

Data Archive for ServiceNow upgrades the platform’s archival capabilities via a ServiceNow-native app, permitting users to archive data within their preferred repository. 

As a native-application, ServiceNow users enjoy a fast time-to-value, as the app is embedded within the UI that users are already familiar with, drastically flattening the learning curve. 

With Data Archive for ServiceNow, users benefit from:

  • High-throughput archival
  • Archiving ServiceNow data off-platform, in their preferred data repository 
  • Secure archiving with encryption 
  • Condition-based logic enabling dynamic archival events
  • The ability to archive records multiple times
  • The ability to archive attachments
  • A ServiceNow-native dashboard for viewing and monitoring archived data

As with Perspectium’s other ServiceNow applications, Data Archive for ServiceNow is implemented and maintained as-a-service.

This helps ensure users get maximum value from the product and service, without having to compromise internal developers time.

Perspectium was created by the founding developer of ServiceNow, David Loo, who used his intimate understanding of the platform to create a performance-impact free means of extracting data from ServiceNow, and connecting it to third-party solutions. 

It is this technology that underpins Data Archive for ServiceNow and enables massive amounts of ServiceNow data to be transferred (over 1 billion records per month) without impacting performance.

To understand more about our off-platform archiving features, contact us today!

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