Lending access to temporary employees or contractors

Do you share company information with individuals you don’t employ, such as independent contractors? Is this really a good idea?

Many organizations find that they need to give contractors, temps, etc. access to their network in order to perform their jobs, but this may become a major issue. For example a wholesaler may offer clients a portal where they can view inventory and order status, their customer details and outstanding invoices.

Organizations need to ensure the safe exchange of information to outside parties. This process can be simply and easily managed automatically using HR technology.

The Active Directory Issue

Individuals external to the company who log in to the network, via a portal, must be able to authenticate themselves easily in order to preform their jobs. The easiest method of achieving this would usually be via HR technology. An active directory account is usually chosen for external service providers who need to access their network. Organizations often enter into agreements with Microsoft to prevent client access license (CAL) fees needing to be paid unnecessarily for infrequently used active directory accounts.

A drawback of adding external parties to the internal active directory is that the number of active directory accounts increases significantly. After all, if any external individual can log in via the portal, this could result in potential financial damage. These issues can easily be solved though using an identity management solution enabling real-time user account management for external customers.

The CRM Solution

Another consequence organizations face when deciding to add third-party accounts to the active directory is that it involves a source system other than the one used for internal employees.

For them, HR technology is often used to create network user accounts, but customer data comes from a CRM system. More often than not, CRM systems do not contain clean and up-to-date information, making them problematic to use as a source system for user accounts.

If organizations want to act as identity provider for external customers, this means they either need to optimize the content of their CRM, or look for another source system.

Organizations can address this problem by not populating the active directory until the customers log in to the portal the first time, enter their details and are granted access after internal validation. By creating a link between the CRM system and the active directory, it is then possible to add to the customer details using information from the CRM system.

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