The Phased Approach to Implementation

Over the past 11 years I have, as a consultant and project manager, implemented and managed many projects in the IDM field. These projects have varied from very small to enterprise level solutions. This experience has given me quite an insight into how the business works, how to gauge customer expectations, and even how to anticipate some requirements before they are provided. One important thing I’ve picked up along the way however, is the ability to recognize the need for phases within projects.

Phasing is not necessary for every project, of course, and teaching our consultants how to determine when phases are required is one of the keys to successful implementations. With the ever-changing technologies used in organizations, the need for a phased approach is on the rise. These technologies themselves often dictate the need for, and number of phases for a project.

A phased approach has many advantages, one being the project timeline. Often a project is rushed due to timeline constraints and the players involved simply charge forward to get the project completed. This will result in missing requirements as well as a lack of proper testing and tweaking - which results in a lackluster outcome. Using phases can help avoid this wasted effort. If time is spent qualifying requirements up-front, everyone involved will be able to plan and schedule the project efficiently. Resources can be scheduled and deployed as needed, depending on the project phase requirements. The ‘sink or swim’ approach can be quite overwhelming on staff and leaves them with little time to adjust to change. Incremental change in phases mitigates these teething problems.

Additionally, this method promotes quality work due to the nature of phasing itself, which breaks the project into smaller components to be produced and reviewed. The resource(s) work to produce the product based on the requirements for the phase they are assigned. Once the production is complete, then the project manager (or other resource assigned to managing the phase/project) reviews the end result of the phase, often with the customer.

Working with the customer through the phases of a project instills confidence in the project, the resources working on the project, and the company providing the solution. As the project proceeds through phases and their associated deliverables, the customer is provided a transparency they are not otherwise afforded which gives them the ability to deal with issues the project may encounter, or sudden new requirements. This improves the ease of implementations as well as creates strong relationships between the solution provider and its customers.

Battle of the email solutions: exchange vs. google apps

In the industry I am in, with the job functions I perform daily, I see more and more organizations moving from an in-house email solution such as Exchange to cloud-based email solutions like Office 365 and Google Apps. This is due to many reasons and an easy way to see why is to compare Exchange and Google Apps.

Read more

Category

General, consultancy

automated account management, cloud based email solutions, Compage Exchange and Google Apps, compare cloud based email solution, compare email solutions, Exchange, Google Apps

How to manage credentials the easy way

A seemingly simple, yet tedious task for anyone in the information technology field is credential management. End users are given usernames and passwords for various systems in an organizations environment, and the hope is that the end users can manage these credentials with very little issue or assistance.

Read more

Category

General, consultancy

Easy Password Management, Manage Passwords, Password Management Easily

Account Management in Education: How Can It Be Improved?

Many school districts and even some higher-learning institutions have their technological infrastructure run by a skeleton crew due to things such as politics and budgetary constraints. Situations such as this can often lead to many issues within the organization: Lack of network resources for end users Inability to properly support end users and systems No time to research and implement newer technology This causes frustrated overworked admins to think outside the box and turn to other solutions, such as software-based, automated or semi-automated identity management.

Read more

Category

General, consultancy

Account Management in Education, Automated Provisioning in Education, WFM in Education

Group Policy Object; What is it and how can it allow for seamless deployment of software

In any organization from a small business to a large enterprise, control over user’s access to various resources on the network is a key component of managing the corporate environment. Access to resources such as network shares and printers to things such as settings on local stations, are just some of the items an administrator wants to manage centrally and cohesively. A common method to manage domain resources like this is via Group Policy in Active Directory.

Read more

What is the Next Step in the Evolution of the Password?

Passwords are the most common form of authentication and the current de-facto standard. In fact, passwords have existed in tech since the early 1960’s when they were implemented at MIT for the time sharing system on their computer systems for researchers. In order to allow multiple researchers to have their own personal “profile” when logging in each user was given a login name and password. This allowed each registered user to access the system for their weekly time allotment.

Read more

Category

General, consultancy

Password management, security management, two factor authentication