Chances are almost 100% that if you’re reading this, you’ve had to deal with some level of employee churn so far this past summer.  Staff turnover is a predictable problem that presents unique security challenges, and there are almost certainly some unique logistical challenges to your specific business.  However, there are opportunities hidden within this problem set to not only automate your onboarding and offboarding, but also set the stage for explosive growth in 2021.

The opportunity in disguise –  Employee offboarding presents you with the unique opportunity to record and define what specific tools and systems that employee needs to use for their job; list these out and create the “actual” list of tools that a new incoming employee or new contractor filling that void might need access to.  This might be as simple as a Microsoft Office 365 account or include other Software-as-a-Service tools.  Employee onboarding also presents a unique opportunity – eventually, market conditions will recover and you’ll be faced with the challenge of hiring new W2 staff, or, perhaps more likely, new 1099 staff.  You can either take the time to properly document offboarding steps and you’ll have a ready-made guide to re-hire back into that role, or, you can think through the steps in advance and document it anyway.   As a bonus footnote, re-hiring with a more rigid, defined process will help the new employees understand the way your shop operates, so you’ll also be setting the stage for redefining company culture as a process, procedure based growth machine.

So, technically, how do you accomplish this?  First things first – before you automate anything, you’ll have to write down how you want it to work manually first.  You’ll be tempted to jump right in and start building the automated process first, but you’ll heavily benefit from documenting your ideal framework first.  So, grab a blank sheet of paper from your printer, the closest writing stick you can find, and start writing down bullet points of systems you’ll need.  Once you’ve finished that, you can start to look at tools which can automatically handle some of these tasks.  The easiest way to handle the security end of things is to look at each system and see if it supports Single Sign-On (SSO).  We’re a big fan of using Microsoft’s Azure Active Directory services and setting other cloud based services, like DropBox for example, to authenticate against the Active Directory.  If you set up Single Sign On for other services like this as well, you’ll be able to enable and disable accounts from one place to turn up and turn down services for a staff member automatically.  You’ll also benefit from reporting capabilities to determine when employees are signing on and what resources they’re using.  Automations can be designed and built in Microsoft Flow, Zapier or Automate.io, though there are several other platforms available which can also achieve this goal.

In summary – define the high level systems per role, write down what you’d like to see, then configure a framework to automate those tasks.  If you are managing these tasks for your organization, feel free to reach out to us and we’ll be happy to take a look at the systems you’re using and recommend a few best practices and a high level design.  We love automation and security and we’d love to talk with you!

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