Lauren McManamon

4 minute read

Ladies and gentlemen, it’s that time of the year - it’s time for your bi-annual list of Flow Designer improvements! In this article, we will not only be covering what changes have been made to existing aspects of the product but also what has been added to its list of abilities. Without further ado, let’s dive in!


Quality of Life Enhancements

To kick things off, we’ve got some general improvements made to the product as a whole - some reflected in the UI, some not. The most obvious of these will be the theming changes made to Flow Designer. For long while, App Engine and Flow Designer lagged behind from a color scheme-perspective, still showcasing our old pastel branding. They have now been replaced with our new, more neon-looking palette (sans a few loading graphics…but we’ll pretend that we didn’t see those ;) )


Power users of the Subflow functionality will be happy to know that its purview has expanded within Flow Designer. Subflows can not only now be used in the Diagramming view but also now have stages enabled within them.



Finally for the general improvements, while it is not reflected in the UI, you will definitely notice this major change made to Flow Designer. Previously, there were some API calls happening behind the scenes that were making certain aspects of Flow Designer run slower than optimal. Some of these were removed entirely and others went through an optimization overhaul to improve their performance. The end results were STAGGERING!

  • 60% Flow load time reduction
  • 98% Time reduction for adding Subflows to a parent flow
  • 99% Flow logic optimization time reduction

Homepage Redesign

On to the grand finale for the improvements; obviously the theming changes I mentioned earlier will catch people’s eye quickly, but so will the new homepage revamp debuting in Vancouverb . Beforehand, you were given essentially just the standard List view of all of your Flows, Subflows, Actions, etc. This has been replaced with a much more dashboard-like experience. The lists still remain, however, you can filter them all down to work you have created with the click of a toggle. In the upper right-hand corner, you will be able to easily pick up on what they were most recently working on by showing the last 3 artifacts you opened. You can see what progress your team has been making below that and track the execution status through reports.


New Features

Edit a Pill

Data Pills are those little bubbles you see within the Flow Designer interface, representative of the values or Objects the actions and logic are running off of. Previously, when a developer had created a data pill, there was no way to edit it; if a change had to be made, the developer would need to delete it and create a new one. This may not seem like the biggest hardship, but led to a lot of capacity for human error. In Vancouver, in both the standard and Diagramming view, you will now be able to double-click into a pill to edit it, saving time and reducing the chances of mistakes being made.


Now Assist Recommendation

AI, AI, AI - its the talk of the town and popping up all over the platform, and FLow Designer is no different! I’m thrilled to reveal that one of the biggest teases of the CreatorCon keynote is here - Now Assist Recommendation! Using the GenerativeAI large language model, as you build your Flows, ServiceNow will make guesses as to what action or logic route should be used next.

In Vancouver, the recommendations are being made off an internal ServiceNow model, based on the Flows and automation that runs all of our cloud solutions and using best practices. Future releases will have more customer-specific options, so stay tuned!

Note: Now Assist will be launched during the second Store release of Vancouver (around November).


Parting Words

Nothing brings me more ServiceNow joy than to advocate for Flow Designer and I hope you enjoy these enhancements and new features as much as I have! If you would like more information on Flow Designer in general, please visit the Docs site to learn more. To see additional content coming out about the Vancouver release, please visit our content calendar here.

Finally, everything we covered here today in this article was shown LIVE on August 15th’s episode of Creator Toolbox. Watch below to see everything in action and be sure to subscribe to the channel for more!