Workspace: Contextual Side Panel

Updated: Apr 1



Disclaimer: This is an issue I experience with having the CSM Workspace plugin activated and working with application scope tables that were extended from Case. You may run into this issue with ITSM Workspace, or not, it all depends on your plugins and application/table structure.


The main drive for this post is a certain gotcha I ran into working with a scoped application that had a table extended from Case. Scouring the internet, I couldn't find anything on this, luckily Kieran Anson from the SNDevs Slack helped me on my journey to figure this out.


First off, what is Contextual Side Panel?


It's the small panel to the very right of the Workspace layout, which houses components such as Agent Assist, Attachments, Templates, and more. See this ServiceNow Product Documentation for more information.



How do I exclude, and add stuff?


Navigate to Workspace Experience > Action & Components > Contextual Side Panel, you can disable Action Assignments if you wish, or create new ones. Refer to the link I mentioned above on how to do this.



The problem found when excluding tables:


This post focuses on tables extended from Case and the out-of-the-box Action Assignments created when activating CSM Workspace, but you will encounter the Templates issue on most tables, as it is global functionality. I'm assuming ServiceNow thought everyone would want templates, but here's how to get by these.


  • Templates - Global - Global Scope

  • Response Templates - Case - CSM Workspace Scope

  • Agent Assist - Case - CSM Workspace Scope


Here's how you can do this, it involves some scope switching, but the end result will be captured in your application scope.


If you wish to remove Agent Assist, and Response Templates from tables extended from Case:


Switch to CSM Workspace scope to see the New button, then switch back to your scope or whatever scope the table in question you're trying to exclude is in, locate it, then click Exclude this table, save your record.


No New button, notice how I'm in the scope my table is in, not the scope my workspace is in, however if you built your workspace in the same scope your table is in, i.e. clicking Workspaces > New then this wont be a problem. I mention this because the official ServiceNow Product Documentation suggests creating a new application for a workspace. This is something to keep in mind when determining how to architect your workspace.



Switching to CSM Workspace scope, the New button appears, let's click it.



Notice, tables aren't there, because no (data) tables exist as part of the CSM Workspace scope. The Table column has an attribute of base_start=true and CSM Workspace doesn't have any tables, so it doesn't have any base tables to pull.



Switch over to the scope your table is in, and tables appear.



Click Exclude this Table and if you wish Exclude all child tables and click Submit.


Now our exclusion is there:


Observe how the updates were captured in the scope the table is in, and the scope we had to switch to in order to show tables:



If you wish to remove Templates:


Templates in Global are a little bit different, you can see the New button in your application scope, if your workspace is in the same application scope your table is in switch you should be able to locate it right away, if not you'll have to switch to the scope your table is in, then click Exclude this table, and save you record.


If you check your update set, you'll see the updates were captured in the scope your table is in, so you shouldn't be promoting anything that will impact either the Global and/or CSM Workspace scope. It's important to note that the change will be captured in the scope your table is in, if you've created a workspace in its own application scope, it will not be captured in your workspace scope.


Takeaways


There can be some scope switching involved when using the various Workspace plugins such as CSM Workspace and ITSM Workspace. This is something to keep into consideration if deciding to create a workspace in its own scope as ServiceNow recommends in its official documentation, or choosing to create a workspace in your existing application scope. Guided App Creator works either way, you can launch it when creating a new app, creating a new workspace in Studio, or even navigating to Workspace Experience > All Workspaces > New.


If your table is in one scope, and your workspace is in another scope, you have to create the update in the scope your table is in, and not the scope your workspace is in. This is something to keep in mind when deciding to create workspaces in their own application scopes versus packaging it in your current application scope because even in the CSM Workspace, you have to switch to Customer Service Management and capture the Action Exclusion there. If you're a customer admin and have free domain, this may not be such an issue, but if you're working on Delegated Development, this can be a larger issue.


Hopefully this helps someone prevent any gotchas when thinking about creating a custom workspace or at least saves someone some time trying to find this solution.


If you come across any documentation relating to this, please post in the comments below and I'll update this blog. I comb through the Product Documentation as much as I can, but things can be missed!


Resources


ServiceNow Product Documentation: Setting up the Contextual Side panel in Workspace


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