To streamline processes for requesting, approving and assigning access for new employees to email, Box, Sharepoint, my.SMU, network drives and other platforms, last year the Office of Operational Excellence established the Account Permissions Initiative earlier this year. In August, the initiative team launched a series of new account permission request forms available via help.smu.edu. The forms have been redesigned to ensure all required information is submitted with the request to minimize delays caused by incomplete forms. The team created help guides for each of the forms to assist managers in completion.
The forms or their fields may not appear different to managers submitting requests, but the process to assign permissions was completely overhauled. “In many cases, a single request would involve multiple teams,” said Rachel Mulry, project manager for the initiative team. “This, of course, required more time to complete as the request moved from team to team through the workflow. With the new processes, we’ve minimized the number of teams needed for approval or interaction with the request. In some cases, we have been able to eliminate any need to involve other external teams at all!”
OIT is now managing account request submissions and aims to fulfill them in under a week. “For those processes requiring training prior to any permissions being assigned, we have enhanced the communication to both the manager and the employee, enabling them to assist us in completing the permissions in a timely manner,” said Mulry. “We are closely monitoring the improved process and working on completing the request within the timeframe outlined by the established service level agreement.” Prior to the redesign, account workflows were requiring an average of 9.5 days to complete. Since they were implemented, requests are now being completed in 4.6 days on average.
The initiative team continues to work on automating permissions assignments based on job classifications and roles. “We recognize there is a significant amount of work to be completed before we can realize that goal,” said Mulry. “In the meantime, we will continue to refine the processes to ensure all employees have the access and training required to fulfill their job responsibilities at SMU.”