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It’s Time To Fix the JML Process


Spiralling software licence costs, significant security risks, poor employee experience and loss of productivity are all reasons why HR professionals should be looking to work more closely with their colleagues in IT.  It’s time to fix the JML process. It makes sense that the employee database HR owns and maintains should be the single source of truth for workforce identity. 

There has been a lot of talk about new ways of working over the past 12 months. Many of these changes have been borne out of necessity, but here we want to talk about one that has been happening under the radar.

It concerns a set of processes that impact every employee in your business that has the potential to provide enormous value—both financially and operationally.

We are talking about the JML process. This is the framework with which companies manage their joiners, movers and leavers. Let’s explain those terms quickly.

Joiner: a new employee entering the business for the first time

Mover: someone moving to a new role within the business

Leaver: a person who is departing the business

An effective JML process ensures employees have the appropriate access rights and privileges to access resources and perform their role. In an ideal world, joiners can come into work on their first day with everything they need. Movers can switch departments with no friction and leavers do not retain any access they should no longer have.

The problem is, most businesses are operating JML processes that are not just inefficient, they are liabilities. Perhaps we should expand on that point a little.

To fix the issues with incumbent processes, HR and IT have to learn to get along.

The Problem with the JML Process

If you are onboarding users to a beautifully integrated HR system, but then having to contact IT to provide login credentials, you’ll know this creates an uneasy, often strained partnership between HR and IT. These are the two most overburdened departments at the best of times.

While HR manages the flow of information about joiners, movers and leavers, it is IT who is responsible for what applications each employee can access.

Whether a business manages the HR/IT interactions via tickets, face-to-face requests or some other means, it is a manual process. Therefore is at the mercy of human error. Tickets get lost, HR ends up chasing IT to add or remove someone from the user database. Meanwhile IT needs to roll out a new application and needs to know how many licences they need.

It’s a common issue, but not the only one associated with a manual, poorly integrated JML process. Others include:

    • Spiralling software licence costs – businesses end up losing thousands of pounds paying for licences for employees who have long since moved on, or are on long-term absence (maternity/paternity leave or sick)
    • Significant security risks – potentially disaffected staff retaining physical or digital access privileges is a security risk no business should have to take
    • Poor employee experience – joiners and movers can quickly lose enthusiasm when having to twiddle their thumbs for the first few hours or days in their new job, with no chair, computer or access to systems
    • Disruption and loss of productivity when changing roles – this is especially relevant now as enterprises try to become more agile responsive, they need a JML process that can keep up

But it’s not all doom and gloom, far from it in fact. We are entering a new frontier for JML, one that not only solves almost all the issues with the conventional approach but offers significant advances in security, efficiency and cost-saving.

This is not a vision of some far-off future, this is happening across enterprises right now.

The Future of JML is Now

To fix the issues with incumbent processes, HR and IT have to learn to get along. JML should rightly sit with HR, but IT can now take on the role of enabler, providing applications to help HR centralise the process.

Integrating the right identity management platform with existing HR systems such as Workday or BambooHR as the single source of truth for everything identity-related, enables accurate licence auditing, massively improves security and provides a seamless user experience.

The second obstacle they face is planning and implementing the right solution. Think for a second about how many systems and applications your employees use. The list probably includes:

Online collaboration tools (Teams, Slack, Zoom) Online Office suite platforms Cloud-based storage Email services Company intranet Costing tools Accounting platforms CRMs Calendars

What Can HR do?

For your HR team to run an effective, centralised JML process they need a clear overview of their existing process.  Where they want to get to with it? And  they need identity management software that integrates with everything.

The solution we recommend here is Okta. An enterprise identity management solution that offers HR a familiar interface like Workday or Bamboo HR, but integrates with every application that may need to make changes for a joiner, mover or leaver.

With full integration it becomes possible for HR to instantly provision everything ready for someone joining the business or moving departments. And just as easily de-provision everything when someone is leaving. Keeping access to company information secure and avoiding paying for software licences you no longer need.

The benefits of having a single source of truth that sits within HR are numerous:

    • Reduces IT friction – within your IT department and between other departments like HR
    • Enables greater efficiency – especially in HR and IT—two occasionally understaffed and often overworked teams
    • Minimises security risks – leavers no longer at risk of retaining access to systems
    • Saves costs – not just on licences for leavers, but by allowing you to reassign them from long term absentees too
    • Quality employee experience – seamless transitions increase employee satisfaction allow them to focus on work

You can also completely remove the potential for errors by adding automation at every step. Easily auditing your identity directory regularly to look for inactive accounts.  This frees up licences that could be recycled or removed.

JML should rightly sit with HR.  IT can now take on the role of enabler, providing applications to help HR centralise the process.

How to Get Started

The great news is that it is likely you already have most of what you need. The missing ingredients are an identity management platform and some expert support with mapping your current and ideal situations.

Innovate IT can help. We specialise in helping businesses adopt technology that unlocks efficiency, increases security and reduces cost.