Amyn Jaffer, Ultima Labs Director
We’ve all heard of ex-employees who have accessed their old company’s database or carried on using their tech after they have left. It’s an age-old problem that hasn’t gone away. The disgruntled employee, the salesperson who goes to a competitor, the new employee who wants to make a name for themselves – it doesn’t have to be malicious, but it can be devastating to a business. No one wants to give away their competitive advantage.
The 2020 Verizon Data Breach Investigations Report found that 86% of all data breaches are financially motivated. This motivation is key in instances of employee data. Another study by Intermedia found that 89% of employees were able to access sensitive corporate applications well after their departure including Salesforce, Quickbooks and other sensitive corporate apps.
Despite HRs and the IT departments best efforts, some things just slip through the net leaving your company vulnerable.
So, how can the latest joiners, movers, leavers (JML) automation technology stop this behaviour?
JML processes in any company are lengthy and complicated with organisations trying to streamline processes, particularly ones that span different departments. If it isn’t done right, it opens you up to error and increased security risks and it’s now even harder to protect sensitive corporate data when people leave or move due to the number of SaaS applications that employees can access from anywhere. It’s also hard to manage and keep track of your assets.
When we talk to clients it’s the JML processes that they all want to improve. They’ve all experienced it taking one or two weeks for new employees to be productive because they don’t have the right tech or access to systems. The impact on new employee experience as a result can be very negative. We know that organisations with a standard onboarding process experience 50% greater new hire retention. While IS Decisions found at least one in three ex-employees are left with access to data after they leave the company. There is also a huge cost implication as well as a security issue if laptops, phones or software licences are left with users – even if they don’t use them, the fact that they’re not reallocated impacts on costs.
JML processes can be drastically improved by using automation technology to free up time for HR, finance and IT departments and reduce costly human errors. Automated processes are not only exponentially more reliable than their manual counterparts but are fully audited. On the odd occasion that they need attention, the software will alert you instantly so you can take action.
The latest JML software has been built to enable customers to develop and manage their own automated JML processes while being integrated with legacy apps and Microsoft Power Automate workflows. It includes over 100 pre-built JML building blocks that a customer can select to suit their JML needs and to accelerate the setup of the automated processes. By combining with Power Automate the software provides a simple to use, familiar and intuitive drag-and-drop interface. One healthcare provider saved 215 working days a year by automating their JML process and reduced their time to run the starter process to 14 minutes.
So, how much of the processes can be automated?
With a blend of Power Automate for connector-based automation, you can automate almost any system. Legacy and bespoke systems with no connectors or APIs can be automated by leveraging IA-Connect’s RPA functionality to directly interact via the user-interface. And once the system is set up and workflows are generated using unique JML building blocks, systems administrators are able to initiate these JML workflows through a standard ITSM system, an HR system or any other trigger point.
The system administrators can give access to the right databases, licenses and apps by simply adding the user to the relevant group or department. They will then be automatically subscribed usernames and told how to set up passwords and so forth. When a person leaves, the administrator can withdraw permissions as simply as they were given and can trigger the processes to retrieve assets from the person before they leave. This ensures there is greater security and compliance for your business. And, if people move within the company all the systems and apps they are assigned to can be changed automatically. Licenses can be removed or swapped, thus ensuring no fees are being wasted.
As with most automation, companies with over 750 employees or those smaller companies with a high staff turnover (e.g. construction, healthcare, logistics, contractors) will benefit the most from these new JML automation services and save money. It goes without saying that any business thinking of implementing this new automation technology would do well to use a firm that is an automation specialist. Not only will the process run more smoothly but they will be able to offer insight into where else automation might help improve your business processes and help tie in your JML processes to other processes that you hadn’t perhaps thought of before.
Do beware the potential pitfalls of implementing poorly designed JML solutions. Many enterprise grade solutions are rigid and standalone which limits the ability to tie your JML processes to other business processes. At the other end of the scale some solution providers are trying to use existing RPA solutions or solely Power Automate to improve JML processes, but these were not designed with JML processes in mind. These can be clunky and difficult to implement, and as they don’t have specific JML focus, these generic solutions can be much more arduous and labour intensive.
There are four main challenges that the JML automation technology resolves. It improves your security posture by producing consistency across the JML process and reducing reporting errors. It reduces costs by giving back time to the HR, finance and IT departments through automation. Critically, it increases employee productivity from day one and improves the employee experience. The best JML technology solutions also allow rapid time to value with a platform that can be implemented quickly and used immediately.