Develop a Query Language for Event Data of Many Interacting Processes

  • Hoekenrode 3, Amsterdam, Netherlands
  • Region: EMEA – Europe, Middle East and Africa

Company Description

ServiceNow is making the world of work, work better for people. Our cloud‑based platform and solutions deliver digital workflows that create great experiences and unlock productivity for employees and the enterprise. We’re growing fast, innovating faster, and making an impact on our customers’ and employees’ lives in significant and important ways. With over 6,900 customers, we serve approximately 80% of the Fortune 500, and we’re on the 2020 list of FORTUNE World’s Most Admired Companies.®

We’re looking for people who are ready to jump right in and help us build on our incredible momentum, our diverse, engaged workforce, and our purpose to make the world of work, work better.

Learn more on Life at Now blog and hear from our employees about their experiences working at ServiceNow.

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We’re disruptive.  We work hard but try not to take ourselves too seriously.  We are highly adaptable and constantly evolving.  We are passionate about our product, and we live for our customers.  We have high expectations and a career at ServiceNow means challenging yourself to always be better.

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  • Managers aren’t just leaders, they are mentors.
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  • There is plenty of room to grow for go-getters & high achievers!

Job Description

In the Process optimization team, you will have the opportunity to work on exciting technologies on big event logs of processes where the process performance and resource behavior matter.

Query languages are widely used for exploring data and answering various analysis questions from data. SQL is the first choice for work with relational data. However, process data are typically recorded in the form of event with timestamps, and often analyzed in the context of the sequence of events generated by the same process instance, or by multiple related process instances. The analysis of this kind of data with SQL by the process analyst is difficult, and often even impossible as it requires writing complex queries. As a result, most tools addressing process optimization problems implement their own, relatively simple in use, query languages meeting the needs of process analysts. Historically, most of them imply a so-called flat event log model, i.e., they consider execution of each process instance in isolation.

ServiceNow platform for managing digital workflows has a process optimization component, that implements a query language for the flat event log model as well. However, considering process instances in isolation significantly limits the process analysis capabilities.  There are business cases requiring the analysis of multiple cases of the same process, single cases of multiple processes, and multiple cases of multiple processes together for taking their interactions into account.

Although this problem is addressed in recent work, the requirement for the language simplicity is not fully solved, and the proposed implementation is technically infeasible for using in ServiceNow’s cloud environment.

The goal of this project is to design an extension of the existing query language implemented in the process optimization component such that:

  • it implements the given user stories related to the analysis of multiple process instances of multiple processes together,
  • it is simple enough to be used by business users after a brief crash course, without extensive trainings,
  • it meets the internal software, hardware, security, and performance requirements.

The designed extension, or at least its part should be implemented as a prototype and evaluated on datasets provided by ServiceNow.

The project is co-supervised by George Fletcher of the Database group.


What you should know before you get here:

  • working towards a MS in a related field,
  • coursework in process mining,
  • coursework in relational or graph database concepts,
  • strong analytical and problem-solving skills,
  • be a self-starter and possess a strong sense of self-motivation,
  • hands-on exposure via academic or professional/internship experience with a programming language, preferably Java.

Additional Information

ServiceNow is an Equal Employment Opportunity Employer. All qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, color, creed, religion, sex, sexual orientation, national origin or nationality, ancestry, age, disability, gender identity or expression, marital status, veteran status or any other category protected by law.

If you require a reasonable accommodation to complete any part of the application process, or are limited in the ability or unable to access or use this online application process and need an alternative method for applying, you may contact us at for assistance.

For positions requiring access to technical data subject to export control regulations, including Export Administration Regulations (EAR), ServiceNow may have to obtain export licensing approval from the U.S. Government for certain individuals. All employment is contingent upon ServiceNow obtaining any export license or other approval that may be required by the U.S. Government.

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The idea is that you first do an internship to get to know the company and the subject, and then do this master project. For more information, contact Dirk Fahland:

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