By using Windows Azure Active Directory, Dillen Bouwteam has created a more secure foundation for a bigger push into the cloud so that the company can realize greater efficiencies. Cloud-based data remains safe, and employees have a simple, centralized way to get to all of their applications.
Foundation for a Bigger Move to the Cloud
With Windows Azure Active Directory, Dillen Bouwteam has the foundation for moving more services to the cloud without impacting employees’ and partners’ lives. “Once you have the directory structure right, you can then add Windows Azure Multi-Factor Authentication and other Microsoft Online Services,” Dillen says. “We want to move as much to the cloud as possible.”
Moving more applications to the cloud is important to Dillen Bouwteam because of the cost savings and productivity enhancements. The firm reduced its email costs by 80 percent by moving to Office 365, eliminating the need to deploy servers and storage on-premises, and avoiding all the associated software licenses. “Even more important than cost is how much faster we can deploy new applications,” Dillen says. For example, the IT team recently had a request from the business to deploy a new planning tool. It had no servers or storage to spare and would have needed two weeks to order more. However, by deploying this tool in Windows Azure, the IT team was able to deliver it in just four hours.
Enhanced Security for Cloud Services
By using Windows Azure Multi-Factor Authentication, Dillen Bouwteam has an extra layer of safety for its cloud services. “With Windows Azure Multi-Factor Authentication, we have a stronger level of protection for Office 365 as well as our Remote Desktop Services farm, so we have all of our external services well protected,” Dillen says.
Better User Experience
Previously, Dillen Bouwteam employees and partners had to change their passwords every two months. By using Windows Azure Multi-Factor Authentication, the IT staff was able to expand the password limit to six months, which reduces inconvenience for users and the amount of time the IT staff spends on password-reset problems. Employees can also use single sign-on access when inside and outside the office.
Additionally, when employees access websites that have organizational rather than individual credentials, the needed credentials are available in the Access Panel along with the applications that the individual is authorized to access. Employees previously spent time tracking down credentials. “Convenience is essential to our users,” Dillen says. “They want to get into their applications and get their work done as quickly as possible. They can do that more easily with Windows Azure Active Directory.”