Site Guide for the CERN Service Portal

Site Guide for the CERN Service Portal

The CERN Service Portal allows you to:

  • Contact one of CERN's services to get help or to report an issue.
  • Find information about a CERN service and browse the CERN Service Catalogue.

An introductory video on the CERN Service Portal is available here.


Contents of this Site Guide:
The Table of contents is on the right-hand side of the page with links to the key sections.

Please note: you will only see the Table of Contents if your screen is wide enough. Otherwise, you can access it by clicking on the 'three lines' main menu icon in the top navigator bar (left-hand side).1

Versions and updates:
Full history of changes in the documentation is provided at the bottom.2


Top and Bottom Navigation

The top and bottom navigation menu bars are always visible in the portal. They provide access to important information that you can access from everywhere inside the portal.

In the top navigation bar (blue) you have:

  • News: contains recent information related to the ServiceNow tool, the Service Portal, or anything that can affect ServiceNow users at CERN. In particular, it contains the regular broadcast concerning new releases. The Archive tab contains items older than three months.

  • Service Catalogue: the two items here, Services and Functions, allow users to browse the CERN Service catalogue. Further details are given in the section below: The CERN Service Catalogue

  • Service Status: gives access to the CERN Service Status Board (SSB), to Service Availability dashboards and, for the people with the appropriate rights, access to the Service Reports for the IT and SMB departments (C5 and C3 reports, respectively). Details are provided in sections:
    CERN Service Status Board - SSB
    Service Availability Overview
    Service Reports - C5 reports - C3 reports.

  • My items: gives access to all your "active" tickets, both incidents (ticket numbers INCnnn) and requests (ticket number RQFnnn). These tickets have been created by you (you are the Caller), or you have been copied on a ticket (you are in the Watch List). This is also available via the "My items" icon described below: Checking and updating tickets - My items.

  • Help & Tools: this gives direct access to the Knowledge Base, to the layered Privacy Notice and also to the ServiceNow tool (for supporters in ServiceNow). More details are provided below, in the dedicated sections: The Knowledge Base and Data Privacy Notices.

In the bottom navigation bar (black) you have:

  • Contact: contact details for the Service Desk, the ServiceNow team and the Service Management project team.

  • Service Desk: all information regarding the CERN Service Desk (contact, location, opening hours, etc.)

  • SMoD: in case you are dissatisfied with the solution or service provided through your ticket, you can contact the Service Manager On Duty (SMoD) for help, as explained in this page.

  • About: this page gives further details regarding the Service Portal, including a short video, and also access to this documentation.


Home Page

Search - How can we help?

The top part of the portal Home page, "How can we help you?", is a Search area where you can type one (or more) keyword(s) corresponding to what you are looking for. Try, for instance, "network". The auto-complete feature immediately provides a list with the first 12 possible results (it can be less). Hopefully you can select what you are looking for directly from this list:

Otherwise, once you hit [Return], the Search page with All results will be provided:

The main window shows the list of results (below All results for...) and the icons show the type of result (see list below).

The menu on the left-hand side, under Sources, is a filter to restrict the results to the desired type:

  • Knowledge Base (KB)
  • Web forms (create ticket)
  • Service Elements
  • Functional Elements
  • Ticket Number
  • Outages
  • External actions
  • Information

Please note: you will only see the left menu if your screen is wide enough. Otherwise, please use the 'filter' icon (funnel) as shown here:

This opens the filtering criteria described above with the possibilty to select the Sources and other criteria for FILTERS. Select Done to confirm the filtering and see the results, or Cancel to remove all the filters.


Please note: it is possible to search in French to find items that have been written in French (e.g. Knowledge Base articles, documents, web forms, etc.).


Knowledge Base - My Items - SSB - Get Help

Below the Search there are the four main icons:

Giving you direct access to:


Most Viewed Articles - Most Recent Outages - Key contacts

The next part of the portal Home page is divided in three columns for:

  1. Most Viewed Articles
  2. Most Recent Outages
  3. Key contacts

Most Viewed Articles
The most viewed articles from our Knowledge Base library.

Most Recent Outages
The latest Service Incidents posted on the CERN Service Status Board (SSB).

Key contacts
Emergency and useful contact details.


Create a ticket

When you need help and you want to contact a service, either to ask something or to report a problem, you will need to login and create a ticket. Tickets are handled by the Service Desk or an appropriate support group.

The best way is to use the Search to find the service that can help and create a ticket from their service page (see the section Create a ticket in the desired service or Create a ticket in the desired function).

The Get help form

If you cannot find the service you need, please use the Get help form on the Service Portal homepage.

This will create a ticket with the CERN Service Desk, who will either provide a solution, or pass the ticket on to the appropriate service.

Please provide as much as detail as possible - the more information you can give, the faster we will be able to assist you. Attachments can easily be added and these are particularly useful for support staff to understand the problem or question.

Checking and updating tickets

My Items

"My Items" will show any current (active) tickets you may have being the Caller or inside the watch list. They are tickets for which you expect a solution. There are two tabs:

  • Incidents
  • Requests

In these tabs you will find the list of all "active" tickets, either incidents (ticket numbers INCnnn) or requests (ticket number RQFnnn), which have been created by you (you are the Caller), or tickets you have been copied on (you are in the Watch List).

"Active" means tickets that are open and have not yet been closed by the system. It is therefore still possible to update them.

By simply clicking on a row in the list, you can open the corresponding ticket and see the details. This includes the communication between you (or people in the watch list) and the support staff processing the ticket. You can also type a message and select Send to update the ticket. The support staff (and anyone in the watch list) will be notified of your message.

The communication log is at the bottom (with yellow vertical bars), and is ordered by date with newest messages at the top. The messages are in two columns: on the left you see the messages sent by the support staff, and on the right, any messages sent by the Caller (or people in the watch list).

The Actions menu (top right) gives you access to other views and actions:

  • Tool view: which will open the ticket in the ServiceNow tool.
  • Clone: allows you to make a copy of the ticket, which you can modify as needed to create a new ticket on submission.
  • Feedback: can be submitted at any time whilst a ticket is active. This is to rate the service (answering the question "are you happy?") and it is not for raising new questions. [For questions, please use the field Type your message here… and send the message.]
  • Print: if you wish to print a ticket (on paper or PDF), please use this printer-friendly view link and then select the printer. NB: this only contains the most important data for the ticket (e.g. description, number, caller) and the last comment sent by the support staff.
  • Form view: is another way to display tickets that have been created via a web form in the Service Portal (referred to as "Record Producers" in ServiceNow). This gives you access to the form with the values provided (and may possibly allow you to edit the values, depending on the form).
  • Cancel ticket: if needed, the Caller can cancel the ticket being viewed here. Please remember to state the reasons, which will send a message to the support staff (and anyone on the Watch List).

There is also the possibility to add people to the Watch List from the menu just below, either by typing the name of a CERN colleague in the first field, or by adding any email address in the second field. To add more email addresses, simply use a comma to separate them.


Processing ticket as a member of a support group

For people who are processing tickets (members of a support group with the ITIL role), we recommend to select the Tool View (see picture above) in order to open and process the ticket via the tool. Some features are not available in the portal view, like the form tab to see the values input by the "Caller" inside a Record Producer (web form in the portal).


The CERN Service Catalogue

All CERN Services have been organised and structured into the CERN Service Catalogue, which is composed of:

  • a Business Catalogue, containing “Service Elements” or SE, and
  • a Functional Catalogue, with “Functional Elements” or FE.

Services are provided through Functional Elements. A Functional Element is organised into different levels of support groups and it is these supporters who deal with the tickets.

A Service Element is linked to one or more Functional Elements. This SE-FE relation is classified based on the relative importance of the function for this service. Tickets are assigned to the Functional Element having the highest importance for the service.

Each catalogue item is accompanied by a different icon, shown in order:

  • Functional Elements: “technical services" provided by different groups and sections (can be linked to several Service Elements).
  • Service Elements: Service Elements: individual Services that users can request (linked to one or several Functional Elements with different levels of dependencies).
  • Customer Services: groups of Service Elements providing a common functionality.
  • Service Areas: category of Customer Services which have a related scope.

The Service Catalogue can be browsed by Services or by Functions from the Service Catalogue menu in the top blue header:


Service Element (SE)

When selecting “Services”, you will be able to search or browse all Service Elements defined in the CERN Service Catalogue.

The easiest way to find a service is to use the search bar Search in the catalog… and start typing a word. The list will reduce and only the services matching the text will be listed.


Example: type mail in the Search in the catalog…:

This page also lists the Service Areas (SA) defined in the catalogue, and using Expand all, you see all the Service Elements, grouped into Customer Services (CS). You can browse this list or use your web browser search:

Create a ticket in the desired service

Clicking on the Service Element name, takes you to the corresponding service portal page. If the service is using ServiceNow to provide support, the page will contain a description of the service, and a section called Actions with a list of web forms than can be filled in to create a ticket (e.g. Submit a request, Report an incident, and possibly more specific forms for this service):

Please note: if there is no "Action" section, this means that the service does not provide support through ServiceNow. Therefore, no tickets can be created for this service. The service may have provided "Contacts" details (top left of the page) or explained how users can get in contact with them.

Read also: KB0002455


Functions or Functional Element (FE)

When selecting "Functions", you will be able to search or browse all Functional Elements defined in the CERN catalogue.

The easiest way to find a function is to use the search bar Search for a functional element… and start typing a word. The list will reduce and only the functions matching the text will be listed.

Example: type mail in the Search for a functional element…:

This page also lists all of the CERN departments, and using Expand all, you see the huge list of all Functional Elements defined in the CERN catalogue, organised per department and per organic unit. You can browse this list or use your web browser search:

Create a ticket in the desired function

Similarly to the Service Elements described above, clicking on the Functional Element name, takes you to the corresponding portal page. for this function. This page will contain a description of the function, and a section called Actions with a list of web forms than can be filled in to create a ticket (e.g. Submit a request, Report an incident, and possibly more specific forms for this service):

These web forms are used to create tickets directly in the selected function. So if you know which function can help you, this will help speed up the process.

Read also: KB0002455


Edit SE or FE pages in the Service Portal

To be able to edit a Service (SE) page or FE page (Functional Element) in the Service Portal you must have the role of:

  • SE Owner or SE Editor for a SE page
    or
  • Functional Manager (or FE Manager) for a FE page.

These roles are granted via the application aisroles.

When you have the correct role and you open the page in the Service Portal, you will have access to a pen icon with View in tool. You shall click on the icon and the page will be opened inside the SNow tool, allowing you to edit it.

Example for the SE page Batch Service opened by a SE editor:

For more details on how to edit the page please read: KB0004472


The Knowledge Base

The Knowledge Base (KB) is a library of Articles written by the supporters for Functional and Service Elements defined in the Service Catalogue. They are referred as "KB articles" with a number KB00...nnn. All articles are attached to at least one Service Element and to at least one Functional Element, visible at the top of the article.

Knowledge Base articles cover a very large scope of information, and include, among others: frequently asked questions (FAQ), how-to's, collections of tips and tricks, etc. In other words, anything that can help users and supporters to solve a problem, or answer a question/request.

Articles also have a Category, which is used to:

  • Either to group KB Articles on a similar subject, across different Service or Functional Elements.
  • Or to organise the list of articles inside a Service or Functional Element.

Please note: this Category parameter will be mandatory in future when creating a KB article.

Example of a KB article (KB0000209):

  • The title of this article is: Printing at CERN - How to print at CERN.
  • It is attached to Service Element: Printing and Copying Service
  • and Functional Element: Print Device Support
  • and the category is: Printing / Printing - 0 Getting Started.

Access to KB articles

KB articles in the Service Portal can be accessed in several ways:

Here is an example for each method:

* Through the global Search: from the Home page, or by using the search bar at the top right of all portal pages, entering some keywords and selecting the Knowledge Base filter on the left-hand side:


* From the Knowledge Base page: by selecting the icon from the Home page. This page lists all the top KB categories that are used to organise articles independently of their Service and Function Elements. You can click on the Category cards to browse the articles, or use the search above:


* From the Service Element (SE) or Functional Element (FE) page: you have the list of KB articles on the right-hand side. For the full list, please select the link View more articles in this SE or View more articles in this FE:



* By filtering your search for a Service Element (SE) or Functional Element (FE) via the global Search: then follow the link to KB Articles (in green) displayed for the required result:


CERN Service Status Board - SSB

The CERN Service Status Board is a dashboard providing up-to-date information regarding incidents, interventions or changes that affect services, called Outages. We recommend you login with your CERN account in order to see full details.

Service managers are providing the information in the OuTaGe records, also referred to as OTG, with a number, as for KB articles, i.e. OTGnnnn.

The default Summary tab displays the list of what is happening today. There are separate tabs for Service Incidents, Interventions and Service Changes. The tabs give access to a list of outages of the specified type and which can be ongoing, upcoming or completed / resolved.


Service Status Board views

At the top of the Service Status Board (SSB) you can select the view you want to see. Currently there are four different views filtering the OTGs posted by specific groups of services:

  • All Services: no filtering is applied, shows all Outages (OTGs) from all services.

  • Computing Services: displays Outages (OTGs) related to computing-related services. This is not restricted to outages in the IT department, but also include those from computing groups in other departments, such as FAP (BC group) or EN (ACE group).

  • Mobility Services: shows Outages (OTGs) related to the mobility services (see list).

  • Accelerator Controls Services: displays Outages (OTGs) related to the accelerator controls services (see list).

All Service Status Board (SSB) pages contain a list of Outages (OTGs) records matching the criteria defined for this page. The main OTG fields are displayed across eight columns:

  • Short Description: brief description of the Outage.
  • Service Element: main service that is responsible for following up this Outage.
  • Services: list of services which might be affected by this Outage.
  • Impact: on the service, which can be: no impact, degraded, or down.
  • Location: gives the building information for this Outage, if relevant.
  • Begin: Outage start date.
  • End: Outage end date. For incidents it is the date and time when it has been resolved.
  • Last Update: date of the last update to the Outage record.

The Short description is a link that opens the full description of the Outage (CERN login may be required).


It is possible to add your own tab containing a new custom filter by using the + icon:


Add new Service Status Board Entry

Service managers who are providing information on the Service Status Board (SSB) have the possibility to do this from the portal by using the link Add new SSB entry on the top right of the SSB page. This opens the Outage web form in the SNow tool.


Service Availability Overview

The Service Availability page is a dashboard providing an availability estimate for IT services. To appear in this dashboard, the “Availability” field on the Service Element (SE) page must be activated by the ServiceNow Support team.

The Availability State value is provided by the service manager. There are three possible values: Unavailable (red), Degraded (orange), and Available (green). The following icons are used:

The following icons are used:

At the top right of the Service Availability Overview page there are two links:

Public screens view | FAQ

  • Public screens view opens the dashboard displayed on public screens in several buildings at CERN. This dashboard is generated with the Open Source software Grafana and maintained by the IT-CM monitoring team.

  • FAQ opens the Knowledge Base article KB0002674 (Service Availability in SNow (SLS)). This KB article is aimed at service managers and contains further details on the Service Availability dashboard.
    N.B. All the relevant Knowledge Base (KB) articles are grouped together here:
    Knowledge Base > ServiceNow > Service availability and monitoring


COVID-19 Service Availability Overview

A COVID-19 Service Availability Overview page, is also provided in the Service Portal for use during the Coronavirus crisis period. As for the Service Availability dashboard, you access the COVID-19 page in the top navigation menu Service Status:

This page displays service availability and service level information during the Coronavirus crisis period. This dashboard is linked from the Coronavirus: information, measures and recommendations page provided by the HSE department.

Service owners are responsible for ensuring the description and status of their Services are kept up-to-date. More details in the KB article: KB0006581.


Service Reports - C5 reports - C3 reports

This part concerns the weekly service coordination meetings in the IT and SMB departments:

  • the C5 meeting (CERN Computer Centre Coordination Committee) in the IT department;

  • the C3 meeting (Coffee, Coordination and Communication) in SMB department.

Service managers fill in service reports for Outages (OTGs), in a similar way as for the Service Status Board (SSB), and in this way, report all incidents, interventions or changes that have affected their services during the week or are upcoming interventions scheduled for the near future.
N.B. there is a flag in the top header bar of all OTG records to select where the record should be published, with three possible values: C3, C5 and SSB. The same record can be published in several places.

For people who are entitled to read of fill service reports, the Service Portal provides a quick access to the functionality via the menu Service Status in the top navigation bar, where you have:

  • C5 Service Reports: list of all service reports for the year and direct access to the “C5 Report for this week” and “C5 Report for last week”
  • C3 Service Reports: list of all service reports for the year and direct access to the “C3 Report for this week” and “C5 Report for last week”
  • Submit a new report: opens the outage web form in the SNow tool, that must be filled for the report.

There are three relevant items in Service Status menu:

  • C5 Service Reports: lists all service reports for the current year and gives direct access to the “C5 Report for this week” and “C5 Report for last week”.

  • C3 Service Reports: lists all service reports for the current year and gives direct access to the “C3 Report for this week” and “C3 Report for last week”.

  • Submit a new report: opens the Outage web form in the ServiceNow tool, required for each new report.

Service managers can find more details here:
Home > Knowledge Base > ServiceNow > OTG records (Outages) > Service Reports (C5-C3)


Data Privacy Notices

ServiceNow is hosting the forms providing details about any personal data processing, called Records of Processing Operations (RoPOs). All CERN services that process personal data must fill in a RoPO, which will be published as a Service Privacy Notice in the Service Portal.

The page Layered Privacy Notice, available in the menu Help & Tools in the portal top navigation bar, lists all Service Elements in alphabetical order that have Privacy Notices:

To find a specific notice in this page you can use the Search of your web browser.

The Office of Data Privacy Protection, ODPP, is working with all stakeholders at CERN to ensure that we are identifying and adopting best practices in our approach to the processing of personal data.

Please note: the RoPOs, published as privacy notices in the portal, can only be edited via the SNow tool (https://cern.service-now.com/), and not from the portal. Only published RoPOs (state Published) can be searched and found in the portal. When a RoPO is not is state Published it can only be found in the SNow tool. To access and edit a RoPO you have to be Service Owner or Service Editor of the service attached to this RoPO. (See also KB0006685)

Further details are available here (you will need to login):
Home > Knowledge Base > ServiceNow > Data Privacy Protection




Footnote

1Table of content:

Please note: the RoPOs, published as privacy notices in the portal, can only be edited via the SNow tool (https://cern.service-now.com/), and not from the portal. Only published RoPOs (state Published) can be searched and found in the portal. When a RoPO is not is state Published it can only be found in the SNow tool. To access and edit a RoPO you have to be Service Owner or Service Editor of the service attached to this RoPO.


2 Versions and updates

  • Version 1.0 published on 15 May 2020

List of changes after publication:

[01-06-20] New section Edit SE or FE pages in the Service Portal

[02-06-20] New sub-sections My Items and Processing ticket as a member of a support group.

[09-07-20] Ticket Number has replaced My Items in the list of search sources (change in release 20.05)