Is your school still using scripts to create student and staff accounts? Or worse, are you still handling the process manually? If so, you're not alone, but you will be soon. More often in recent years, schools have been realizing the ease and cost effectiveness of automating the entire account lifecycle. This means that they are now creating, updating, disabling and deleting Active directory accounts with zero human intervention. Whenever an addition, or a change is denoted in the Student Information System (SIS), the addition/change is automatically added to Active Directory. Additionally, schools are now adding the same functionality to other systems too, most commonly email, and Learning Management Systems (LMS).

PowerShell / scripts only entangle you in more complexity. They often require re-writes, and extensibility to additional systems is quite difficult. It's also only a semi-automatic approach. Do these scripts handle name changes? What about role changes? Perhaps most importantly, what about disables?

Unfortunately, I've heard too many horror stories revolving around the same issue: A teacher is terminated, but hours later they still have access to their school email on their mobile device. The disgruntled (now ex) employee then decides to send out a nasty email to students and parents. This is an unnecessary risk that can easily be mitigated.

Here's another example of the peace of mind that automation can give. Have you ever had that panic stricken moment late at night? The one where you think to yourself "Uh oh. If the person managing these scripts wins the lottery and doesn't come back to work tomorrow, we're in serious trouble!"

With automation in place, these potential nightmares become non-issues. If you haven't automated yet, what are you waiting for?