In partnership with UNIFY, Parliamentary Service implemented a Microsoft® Identity Management solution to replace its legacy Enterprise Directory.
UNIFY Identity Broker helped to integrate with Microsoft Dynamics CRM while FIM (Forefront Identity Manager) Event Broker helped to achieve governance and near real-time synchronisation. Provisioning and deprovisioning users is now more efficient and takes only a few hours.
Critical on-boarding processes were error-prone, lengthy and required a high level of Help Desk involvement.
A partnership with UNIFY mentoring the Parliamentary Service project team to deploy on and off-boarding services.
The purpose of the Parliamentary Service in New Zealand is to provide administrative and support services to the House of Representatives and Members of Parliament and their staff, including communication and information technology. On-boarding and off-boarding staff processes were inefficient, with manual workarounds in place where the provisioning process was incomplete, or complete with errors.
Gerry Kessell-Haak, Chief Architect at the Parliamentary Service, who as consulting architect developed the initial specifications of the solution, explained the importance of the system for the smooth running of Parliament.
The staff on-boarding process is important, particularly after an election when there is a turnover of staff. A whole raft of activity goes into the process of provisioning and providing access to staff members.
The Parliamentary Service needed to replace the manual processing of ICT services, reduce the Help Desk’s level of involvement to save time and resources, and ultimately required more effective and efficient identity management and business systems to streamline business-critical processes.
A collaborative partnership harnessing world-class expertise
The Parliamentary Service selected an identity management product that was tightly integrated with the Microsoft platform standardised across the business. The organisation had a clear roadmap for security and implementation, and initially came to UNIFY to help grow their in-house capabilities.
We didn’t want to rely one hundred per cent on our vendors. Working with UNIFY has been a collaborative team effort to ensure we build the right capability and tools ourselves for continued success.
From day one, the UNIFY team demonstrated they had the ability to verify our strategy and approach, which helped immensely with the eighteen month implementation. Their team worked as mentors to guide our in-house team to a successful outcome, and having both Wellington-based and Solution Centre-based technical consultants sitting with us in our office was invaluable. It was also a huge advantage that the UNIFY team had been involved in the creation of the initial Microsoft product.
Tony Temaru, General Manager of UNIFY Solutions New Zealand, said UNIFY’s Forefront Identity Management (FIM) team comprises Microsoft Most Valuable Professionals, Microsoft Certified Trainers and principal Identity and Access Management security specialists.
We have successfully deployed identity and access systems across most industry sectors and geographical and technical boundaries. Combined with the fact we are based locally and are flexible to the needs of our clients, companies can use our global expertise within their own team.
Integration across platforms
UNIFY’s Identity Broker product supports integration with the Microsoft Dynamics CRM, and serves as a connectivity framework for rapid connection development. FIM Event Broker provides self-service identity management for users to automate life-cycle management across heterogeneous platforms, and a rich policy framework across both security and auditing processes. Gerry Kessell-Haak explained that the project was very complex and rolled out over four phases.
We used the Microsoft Dynamics CRM as the core source of people information, which we believe is quite a unique system. The first phase was to migrate data from the legacy system into the CRM. When a person is on-boarded, they go directly into the CRM which kicks off the onboarding process in other applications, right through to card access.
Achieving the strategic objectives
The Parliamentary Service now has a solution with a robust and secure Role-Based Access Control framework that adheres to security best-practice, with UNIFY Identity Broker integrating with Microsoft Dynamics CRM and FIM Event Broker helping to achieve governance and near real-time synchronisation.
The improved data management of user identity information removed complexity and provided for more effective updates and developments, and provisioning and deprovisioning now takes only a few hours. Workflows are now more automated and explicit across business unit boundaries through the Microsoft Dynamics CRM and other applications, minimising dependence on key staff and encoded in the systems managed by the Parliamentary Service.
Tony Temaru said that the FIM solution provides the assurance that information can only be accessed by authorised personnel.
Some legacy systems have significant security limitations due to insecure technology. The FIM solution removes the significant reputational risk of personal information being compromised.
Victor Maceda said the solution also contains an automated policy application which allows the Parliamentary Service to automate provisioning and access.
As correct access to information is an ongoing challenge, this component is beneficial when implementing role changes and re-allocating support staff to different parties and members.
From MIIS to Azure, UNIFY is Microsoft’s trusted partner for quality security, identity and associated secure collaboration outcomes.