SOAP interface

favicon-32x32A couple of months ago, the automator got a new important capability: It can now integrate into applications via SOAP.

That opens a new dimension of automations. For example 4me provides a REST API which delivers JSON data objects. SAP provides (mainly) SOAP, meaning that every message MUST be encoded using XML. JSON and XML are quite different, and look rather incompatible:

(, Oct 2019)

Don’t worry! The automator engine translates JSON to XML and vice versa automatically. Therefore a 4me integration into SAP and vice versa is easily done.

Many ERP applications can now be connected and integrated in order to reduce costs and eliminate manual tasks:

  • Microsoft Navision
  • In fact, the complete Microsoft Dynamics suite
  • SAP
  • and many more




4me – Snow integration


With the help of the automator the integration of Snow assets into the 4me CMDB is efficient and effective. Snow itself is capable of sending emails to a specific email address out of the box.

So, how does sending an email out of Snow helps?

  1. The assets to integrate are attached in a csv file
    Snow sends an email with a csv attachment (Snow csv report) containing about 10000 items – example of one project.
  2. The automator reads the csv file
    The csv file gets parsed by the automator. The automator then checks if a certain item already exists. If yes, it updates the item. If no, it creates the item. Further personal assets like assigned computers are automatically linked to the correct user. The effect is that within 4me the support agent knows instantly what CIs belong to a specific user.
  3. Risk mitigation
    The automator sends a status mail to 4me. This mail creates a ticket about the outcome of the transfer.


  • 1 automator package
  • 3 days of development



4me broadcasts – simplified



4me provides broadcast messages. To create a broadcast, a member with a role needs to go to the settings console, broadcasts and add a broadcast message. Furthermore the agent needs to be in the correct account – directory account or one of the support domains. This is useful whenever staff members with roles need to inform others.

The situation

For some organizations it is important that users in Self Service can spread information fast without involving the Service Desk. That way others are instantly informed.

An example

Your company builds a new production plant in a remote area. Many people go on-site. To make life easier for others, you want to spread messages via Self Service. “Take road A and not B”, “use hotel C and not D”. These kind of messages seem not to be important but we were told that it makes a huge difference for people going there.

The concept

In Self-Service we added a button “New broadcast”. The button opens a simple form.


A request is created. Now the automator comes in. This simple package is handling the creation of the broadcast message:


The output

In Self Service and in the staff environment the broadcasts are visible.



Handling requests – Outlook is a NO GO


Surprisingly often mail is used to exchange important information about requests instead of using the organization’s request management tool. One could think that this happens mainly outside of IT when handling HR requests or requests to the finance department. Well, surprisingly enough this is found in many many IT departments.

So, why is this a problem?

  1. Information sharing
    Whenever information is exchanged via email the information for the Organization as a whole is lost because it rests in personal inboxes.
  2. Reinventing solutions over and over again
    If information is berried in emails others can not find already developed solutions. They often reinvent solutions for the same kind of request over and over again. For the Organization, efficiency and effectiveness drifts away and knowledge can not be converted to assets.
  3. Statistics are wrong
    Quantitative indicators are most likely not accurate because up to 40 % of communication is done via email. Performance Indicators like amount of interactions per case etc. are not reliable potentially leading to suboptimal decision making.

What can you do?

Check your request management tool for:

  1. Mention function
    Can you easily involve people to join information collection within a request’s note field and collaborate smoothly?
  2. Make the tool as easy to handle as emails
    The reason why people love email is the unstructured form. Unfortunately most Service Management tools are by far too complicated to support that. Simplify, simplify, simplify or use 4me.
  3. Explain to people why this is important
    If people understand why the usage of the request tool is important and the tool supports easy and smooth collaboration than email exchange will decrease.
  4. If you still get requests via emails you can simply forward that email to a specific address. The automator figures the original sender and registers the request for the sender with a friendly hint to use the tool for additional information exchange.






Your KCS project does not take off…


Business case

Knowledge management in general has the potential to contribute significantly to efficiency and effectiveness. It really becomes crucial when it comes to Self Service. The Organization as a whole benefits if customers search for solutions in Self Service and find them! Usually customers stop searching if they do not find expected articles.

What helps?

1: I find it very helpful to promote recently verified articles in Self Service for a month or so on the homepage in Self Service. That way customers are aware what knowledge articles are available.

2: 4me provides an easy way to know what people searched for. Create articles for these specific topics and promote them in Self Service too.

How can I promote articles in Self Service?

With the help of the automator you just need one package to promote those articles on the homepage of Self Service for a time frame of your choice automatically. No manual maintenance required.



Simply write an email to


Service Management beyond IT – or is this too beyond?


Beyond IT

Service Management is not only used for IT requests but also for HR-, Procurement-, Facility- requests and so on.

This of course makes sense, because it structures requests and mitigates confusion. But how far does the beyond IT “hype” go?

Operations support – fresh food delivery

In one of our “beyond IT” projects we handle fresh food supplies from farmers via a delivery company to consumers.

This is easily done with the help of the automator’s end user wizards. The farmer simply organizes the food packages in 4me Self Service so that the delivery company can pick them up.

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The workflow capabilities of 4me help to delivery the packages in an efficient and effective way.

Happy delivery!



automator | Application extension

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Business case

Data often need to be presented in a different form to become information. 4me for example, contains all required components to maintain budgets. There are products,  purchasing workflows, projects and invoices.

To manage financial data in a practical way the components can be presented in summarised form.

The automator

With the automator it is simple to pull data and present them effectively.


Development time

We talk about a couple of hours to configure such a page…





Test Driven package Development

The purpose

TDD (Test Driven Development) simplifies the process to generate well designed package code. It further eliminates the risk of package failures due to implementation changes nearly completely. The notion of Fail (red), Pass (green), Refactor increases code quality on a continuous basis.


The process

At first a test always fails, this means that your code does not implement the feature the test is about. Next you do just the minimum in order to pass the test. So the output of the test changes from red to green. Then you refactor the implementation package and the test should remain green.


Green is a good thing!

The added value

It often boils down to the following scenario. You develop a package, everything works fine for a long time. Then you like to change something. Changing implementation code is always risky. The TDD functionality reduces that risk to a minimum, meaning that you can act faster to implement changes and sleep better!


Product sheet

Tired of closing records manually?

The situation

You are most likely familiar with the ITRP sandbox environment (…/ You configure and test new things there. At some point you want to train people with your specific configuration but over time the sandbox became messed up.

Many open test records like Requests, Changes, Tasks are open and need to be closed before a training starts to make it easier for the audience. The challenge you face is to close probably 100s of records manually.

Manually in the automator age?!? Not so much

You simply need to register a Change that triggers the automator package and you are done. After a couple of minutes your sandbox environment looks clean again and your audience does not get lost in test records.


The automator package – main function

The package is straight forward. It checks whether the above change is selected and started. Then it closes all changes and afterward all requests.

Hint: If a change is closed all linked tasks are closed automatically. That way there is no need to loop over open tasks.

(function() {
 if (!firePackage(PKG_SETTINGS.implementationTaskTemplateId,, task.status)) return;
 log('automationTaskTemplateId: ', PKG_SETTINGS.implementationTaskTemplateId);
 log('task Template ID ',;


//Helper functions

Happy training!



Reduce clicking to obtain information

Use case

Imagine you sit in front of the ITRP inbox. An implementation task has been assigned to you. The specific relevant information rests in the Request’s custom data field because a request template with an UI extension provided the structured input form.

Therefore, you need to click on the Request link of your task, to open the Request in a new tab (cmd + shift + click). The inefficient thing is that you need to work with 2 tabs,  you read specific information in one tab and you need to comment in a second tab.


The automator solves this problem with a couple of lines of code


//This package copies "custom_data" from the request
//to all tasks, so that people do not need to click

const PKG_SETTINGS = {
 automTaskTemplateID: 139

(function main(){
 if ( !== PKG_SETTINGS.automTaskTemplateID) return;
 const chg = task.change;

 if (chg.requests.length === 0) return;
 const req = chg.requests.first();
 const reqCustomData = req.custom_data;

 for (let t of chg.tasks){
   let mergedCustomData = assign({}, reqCustomData, t.custom_data);
   update('tasks',, {
     custom_data: mergedCustomData;


The automator package copies all UI extension data to all tasks if a certain Task Template is used. Therefore it works in a generic way. Independent of what you have in your Request UI extension. It always works!

Furthermore you can select what UI data you want to see in specific tasks. Simply put your field selection into the UI Extension and add the extension to your task template.


Now, you instantly know what you need to do, without clicking around. Makes sense, right?