About Welser Profile
Welser Profile is a family-run business in its 11th generation, with 2.400 employees – 1.500 of them IT users – spread across 15 locations in Europe and North America. The organization specializes in the development and production of roll-formed special profiles, profile tubes and assemblies made of steel and non-ferrous metals.
“tenfold significantly reduces the processing time for privilege authorization. It used to take up to 24 hours to get a privilege, now it can be done within 10-15 minutes. It’s much better now in terms of speed and efficiency.“
Infrastructure Division at Welser Profile
Production and sales offices in 13 countries
No. of IT users
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Background: Manual Processes, Long Waiting Times
Before tenfold was introduced, a typical workflow for assigning permissions would look as follows:
When an IT user required access to a folder they did not yet have access to, they would inform the associated data owner (commonly department head or project manager) about this, who would then input the permission request into an Excel list and send a ticket to the IT department. The IT in turn were responsible for attributing the permission to the user on a technical level.
However, the management of around 1.500 IT users scattered across multiple locations resulted in the accumulation of a considerable number of tickets, all of which had to be handled manually and therefore consumed excessive amounts of time and resources.
No Reporting Option
Another big issue was that there was no way to generate permission reports from the Excel list to see the actual permissions users had at any given time and who was responsible for granting them – even though such information is vital to pass both internal an external audits. As a result, keeping track of all the permissions in circulation and revoking them on time presented an increasingly difficult challenge to IT staff. Phrases such as privilege creep and insider threat are just a few of the threats associated with overprivileged users.
Top Must-Haves For Possible IAM-Solution
Realizing that a change was necessary, Welser Profile set out in 2018 to search for a suitable identity and access management solution to ease the pain. They defined their main goals and requirements for a suitable tool as follows:
Delegate access management responsibilities away from IT and incorporate department heads, managers (i.e. data owners) directly into permission assignment processes
Provide better overview of current status of permissions
Reduce workload for IT service desk
Enable management of DFS shares
After extensive research, three IAM tools were shortlisted: tenfold and two competing products. Thanks to its wide range of functions, clear and user-friendly interface and quick and uncomplicated deployment, tenfold was ultimately able to win the race. Furthermore, tenfold was able to meet one of Welser Profile’s key requirements, unlike its competitors: the management of DFS shares. As the final cherry on top, tenfold offered the possibility to connect additional programs and system via interfaces, which presented another deciding bonus factor.
Quick deployment, easy to use: tenfold is the all-round IAM match Welser Profile had been looking for.
tenfold is known for its quick and easy deployment. With a little help from tenfold’s support hotline, Oliver Schubert and his coworkers at Welser Profile were largely able to set up the software themselves and roll it out in the system. They initially applied it to less complex folder structures to get to grips with the software, but by now, tenfold has been successfully rolled out at three locations.
What Is tenfold Used For?
At Welser Profile, tenfold is mainly used for managing file server permissions and DFS shares, and for conducting their annual user access review. In this process, permissions that have expired or are no longer needed are re-assessed by the responsible data owners. In a second annual review, the IT department reviews administrative Active Directory groups and removes any unnecessary administrative rights.
One thing hasn’t changed: data owners (or “folder owners”, as they are referred to at Welser Profile) are still in charge of approving and declining access requests. However, with tenfold, they can now assign those permissions directly without having to wait for IT to take care of the technical implementation. This part is now covered by tenfold automatically in the background. At the same time, tenfold keeps logs of who requested and approved each privilege and until when it is valid. The result of this shift is that IT professionals at Welser Profile now are no longer forced to waste precious time on redundant tasks, but can address more important matters.
Thanks to tenfold, the waiting time for new permissions was reduced from 48 hours to just 10 minutes!
Improvements at a Glance
Process optimization – Privileges become effective within minutes as opposed to hours or even days.
Fewer detours = fewer errors – The road from user request to the actual assignment of the permission is now a direct path without multiple stopovers.
Less administrative work & more clarity – Because the IT department is now largely removed from the authorization equation, there are fewer stopovers and therefore less backlog due to questions or uncertainties.
Fewer tickets to process = reduced workload for IT staff.
Higher level of security thanks to recurring access reviews.
tenfold removes any privileges that are flagged for deletion from the Active Directory automatically in the background; users thus automatically lose access to files they no longer need to have access to.
The Future with tenfold
Currently, Welser Profile are still busy rolling out tenfold to all locations and folder structures, and with integrating their DFS. Future plans include the management of user lifecycles, i.e. employee on and offboarding, as well as the integration of Azure Active Directory, Microsoft 365 license management and SharePoint Online.
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