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Case Study

Universal Identity Management Across Unique Branch Outlets

Integrated and Automated Identity Management

Executive Summary

Car retail is a very people-centric business, and every car retail outlet is unique in several ways. They can offer a differentiating combination of services, such as selling vehicles and offering maintenance and parts, insurance, and car detailing. All these are led by individuals who understand their local markets and customers. Successful car retailers stand apart from the rest because of their people.

​Performanta’s customer is one of the UK’s largest car retail enterprises, expanding its network of branches by acquiring other outlets. While they appreciate that individualism is essential for the success of these acquisitions, they need consolidated and integrated technology systems to ensure continuous delivery and satisfying customer and employee experiences. In particular, they require a uniform and consistent user identity management service that aligns with their processes and scales as they grow.

Our customer initially approached Performanta to check an identity management proof of concept provided by a different party. Yet the POC soon proved inadequate, and our team used the rest of the allocated week to provide an alternative POC. The solution uses Microsoft Identity Manager as the central hub that coordinates identity data between HR databases and ActiveDirectory with the client’s on-premises and cloud services.

​The client recognised that this was the system they needed. Performanta’s Identity Experts team established the service within a few months, including data manipulation streams to ensure the correct identity information. We created automated workflows that aligned with the client’s processes and now manage the identity environment as a service, enabling our client’s IT teams to focus their attention on other priorities.

The Challenge

Performanta’s customer is a major UK car dealership network that expands its networks primarily through acquisitions, bringing more unique dealerships under its canopy. They combine independent- minded dealerships that offer different services and vary distinctly in their operations. Some might provide only sales, while others include maintenance and repair services, car detailing and even parts retailing.

​Yet while these different businesses might retain their individualism, they should use the same technology systems and a robust identity environment for cost, performance and security reasons. This consolidated environment must support a wide range of roles, from administrators to mechanics who access different systems for different reasons.

​The customer needed an accurate and automated identity management environment, connecting all branches and using data from business systems, including HR databases and ActiveDirectory. It also needed an invisible background process, operated as a service by a third party.

The Solution

Performanta’s Identity Experts team accepted the client’s request to check a proposed proof of concept for their identity project. But we soon realised the POC was insufficient to meet those requirements. Within the week allocated for the evaluation, we delivered a new and more comprehensive concept for their identity integration and management. Assured by these early results, the client gave us the go-ahead for the full implementation.

​Our solution uses the Microsoft Identity Manager (MIM) to integrate information from several databases and business systems, tapping their HR systems to distinguish profiles and roles. We sourced data items from authoritative HR sources, relating that information to business processes and determining what access a person needs to be productive in their job. The data and business processes informed our technical design for the final build. Our team also developed data manipulation streams to ensure accurate and reliable information.

Performanta focused on ensuring our technical design matched the client’s expectations, operations and processes. Most integrated identity solutions fail because they force their methodology onto the business. But our experience with project management enables us to adopt different approaches, working with our client to create business-aligned solutions. This approach is how we quickly delivered a tightly-integrated and automated identity management solution.

The Results

By integrating on-premises and cloud systems into one identity management solution via Microsoft Identity Manager, our service enables every branch site in this car retail business to use the same consolidated sign-in and profile management features. Our client’s employees can access services suited to their role, even though they work in different branches and departments.

Performanta’s teams expediently designed and implemented the solution, consulting with technology and business stakeholders to align the design with the business environment and automate relevant processes. Our communication project management and technical experience accelerated project delivery, encouraging fast service adoption and quicker customer returns. Our automated solution scales with our client’s growth—new acquisitions can seamlessly join the identity management system.

Since our solution uses established company systems and data, it helped the customer further digitise their business. They now rely on a stable, automated and integrated identity management process that draws its information directly from business profiles—supplied through HR databases, ActiveDirectory and several additional systems. Encouraged by the quick delivery time and close alignment to business requirements, our client has started exploring ways to scale Performanta’s solution to other operations.

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About Performanta

Performanta was founded in 2010 and has over 150 staff worldwide, including former CIOs/CISOs from large enterprises. It has a global footprint with a team of 80 analysts working in two SOCs, helping to secure customers across 50 countries, from offices in the United Kingdom, Australia, Germany, South Africa and the USA. Performanta offers a consultative approach to people, process and technology, focusing on security projects in line with adversarial, accidental and environmental business risk. With a holistic cybersecurity view, we understand the modus operandi of the perpetrator and accordingly build an intelligent defence mechanism to make customer environments less susceptible to attacks.

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