ServiceNow Negotiations Guide


It’s often said that negotiating without leverage is another form of begging, yet we commonly observe enterprise buyers approaching ServiceNow purchases with little time to execute a deal, no ServiceNow alternatives, and no valid reasons for the sales rep to offer a better, more competitive ServiceNow price. ServiceNow’s sales teams are masters at executing their “land-and-expand” strategy, getting a foot in the door, winning over users, spreading across business units and processes, and growing their footprint. These activities occur as the sales team actively works to remove any and all sources of leverage you may have.


This ServiceNow negotiations report will focus on these key categories specific to ServiceNow deal execution to maximize leverage in your next ServiceNow deal:


1. Developing a Favorable ServiceNow Deal Timeline


The average ServiceNow deal requires 6-12 months of prep work in order to achieve a competitive outcome and ServiceNow price. This section details all the ServiceNow deal activities and best ServiceNow practices that need to be taken to create and preserve negotiation leverage. With an organized strategy around each of these activities, buyers can approach ServiceNow negotiations from a position of power.

2. Creating ServiceNow Deal Options and Alternatives


There are many alternatives and deal options available for buyers aside from ServiceNow competitors. We dive into all ServiceNow motivations and how each can be utilized by the buyer to improve their ServiceNow price. ServiceNow alternatives and options discussed in this section include:


  • Multi-year term lengths: What is the impact to the ServiceNow sales rep’s commission based on the length of your agreement? We detail how multi-year ServiceNow deals factor into compensation plans and how buyers can improve their ServiceNow negotiation position by playing with term length.

  • ServiceNow Product Growth: ServiceNow reps will be motivated by different product growth options. Understand how multiple ServiceNow proposal options can put the customer in the driver’s seat when dictating ServiceNow price and cost.

  • High Profile ServiceNow Products: What ServiceNow products are motivating sales reps to provide the best ServiceNow discounting? How do these ServiceNow products affect sales rep commission? We detail answers to these questions and how buyers can use these products as a bargaining chip to improve their ServiceNow price.

  • ServiceNow Deal Timing: ServiceNow is driven by key fiscal year dates. Learn how to manipulate ServiceNow deal timing through acceleration or deceleration of execution dates to motivate your sales rep to provide the best ServiceNow deal outcome for your organization.

  • ServiceNow Deal Structure Alternatives: Certain ServiceNow deal structures have a higher emphasis placed on them by sales reps due to commission and revenue allocation benefits. We detail what deal structures motivate ServiceNow and how you can leverage them to improve your ServiceNow price.

  • ServiceNow Competition Matrix: Competition is a useful negotiation tactic when competing new ServiceNow purchases. We detail competitive product offerings and cost comparisons from the closest ServiceNow competitors in the IT Service Management (ITSM) space.


3. Controlling ServiceNow Deal Information


Like most major vendors, ServiceNow’s sales teams are experts at obtaining information which eliminates their uncertainty around the deal and destroys buyer leverage. The close relationship between ServiceNow and your internal business users can begin before your first purchase and strengthen over time. ServiceNow information leaks can occur anywhere - on the phone, via email, in your office, at lunch or at ServiceNow’s flagship event, Dreamforce. This section highlights how to proactively plan and raise awareness with business stakeholders on what information is important to protect in any ServiceNow deal. An aligned organization is necessary to minimize ServiceNow cost and continually control the tone of a ServiceNow negotiation.


4. ServiceNow Negotiation Messaging Development


In the last section of this ServiceNow Negotiations report, we detail the four key features all effective ServiceNow negotiation messaging has. ServiceNow sales reps are built to test the buyer’s story for potential inconsistencies up to the customer’s C-Suite. When in a ServiceNow negotiation, it’s important to present a unified message across any groups who interface with the ServiceNow sales team, and that message must be credible, consistent, and positively impact your leverage in the ServiceNow deal. This section also includes popular tactics ServiceNow sales rep use to deflect common negotiation tactics and examples of messages that work effectively in a ServiceNow negotiation.



To achieve a competitive ServiceNow deal, you must align around a comprehensive plan to build deal leverage, protect information, and deliver a credible story in the ServiceNow negotiation. By following the Leverage Management Maturity Model (LM3) introduced in this document, buyers can approach their ServiceNow negotiations from a position of strength and achieve best-in-class results. For additional assistance on your ServiceNow purchase, review some of the other ClearEdge resources listed below to help plan your strategy and mitigate risk.


Download Our ServiceNow Negotiations Guide

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See our other ServiceNow guides below.

ServiceNow Pricing and Sales Tactics


Pricing & Sales Tactics

Rightsizing Your Spend with ServiceNow

Rightsizing Your Spend

with ServiceNow

Top 3 Gotchas in a ServiceNow Contract

Top 3 'Gotchas'

in a ServiceNow Contract