Chuck Tomasi

4 minute read

Over the past few years, customers and analysts have been telling us two things: “We need more digital transformation of our workflows” and “We need more developers.” Introducing App Engine Studio (AES). AES is the fastest way to start building ServiceNow apps for creators of all skill levels. Let’s break this down into three main blocks: speed, experiences, and scale.


What makes AES so fast? First, a modern/consumer-based design allows you to move through the steps to create an app quickly. Personally, I think it’s the sexiest thing in ServiceNow in a long time! It’s going to be more appealing for those that are new to building apps. It even includes a guided tour that introduces the developer to the various parts of building an app. Quickly walk through the steps of building a table, a flow, experiences, and security in a few clicks. For you veteran developers, you’ll remember that Guided App Creator (aka GAC) in Studio walked you through the steps of creating tables and defining the experiences - AES goes further, faster. You can build flows directly in AES - it’s just another tab! The recently updated Flow Designer UI complements AES very nicely.

Second, templates! That’s right, application templates that enable anyone to create an app based on the templates in minutes. With the initial release of App Engine Studio, you get five templates for common requests. That library will be increasing over time (much like spokes for IntegrationHub.) We also include Flow Templates. Start with one of the many standard flow templates or, like the table builder, create one of your own.


Again, like Guided App Creator, AES enables you to create mobile apps, and you can choose which target mobile app to use! Today, AES can create mobile apps and I’m told by a reliable product manager that we have plans to redesign the entire mobile studio experience within AES.

You can also build multiple Now Experience portals and workspaces to give end-users a truly modern experience far beyond standard lists and forms. Want to see how your experience looks before you deploy? Click the Preview button! Want to go deeper with your workspace experience? Use UI Builder to arrange and configure!


Enabling your citizen developers (aka builders) solves that previous comment about not having enough developers. Empower those who know the “line-of-business” processes the best to build tables and flows and save the complex logic, like building custom actions in Flow Designer, experienced devs. That’s a winning combination! AES also makes it simple to scale your development efforts while maintaining governance over the apps. When the citizen dev is ready to deploy, they submit the app, it goes for review, and is deployed only if approved.


I know some of the experienced ServiceNow devs may be asking “Why do we need another development environment?” The short answer is: to allow more people to dig into the backlog your organization requires to do more digital transformation. While Guided App Creator, Studio, and perhaps even standard lists and forms may be adequate for you experienced ServiceNow devs, AES enables more people to do more work faster. And if you are an experienced ServiceNow dev, I invite you to explore AES on your PDI to understand how it can streamline your development workflow.

You won’t find AES on every instance. First, it’s a store app. Because it has been “decoupled” from the major releases we can provide more frequent updates (including the highly sought-after templates.) It should also be noted that AES is part of the App Engine licensing model. Talk to your account team to understand the costs involved. I hope you’ll agree that the value is worth it.