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Success story

Leveraging Ivanti to Accelerate Time to Value at a Lower Cost

Banking Is fiercely competitive

On the one hand, banks need agility and flawless service to build customer preference and loyalty. On the other, some of the most stringent regulatory challenges of any industry shackle them. These two pressures make the demand for extreme efficiency especially acute, driving banking IT professionals on a constant search for innovation and better business process execution for both their corporate and branch locations.

“Our goal is to provide better service quality for customers, lower costs with faster time to value for the business, and to have easier management for IT,” says Richard Ferrara, CTO of Woodforest Bank. This is often an impossible dream with the competitive nature of the business, especially for lean organizations.

The challenge

Woodforest National Bank was running an Identity and Access Management (IAM) solution it had long since outgrown. It was slow to update, hard to manage and surrounded by manual processes and cumbersome script automation. IT management was maintaining not just an IAM solution, but many PowerShell and Visual Basic scripts.

It was time for a new system, not an upgrade. But estimates for deploying an alternative, full-blown IAM solution ranged from nine to 12 months. Even a barebones solution would take three months to implement — and wouldn't deliver the value that IT needed to achieve its requirements for low maintenance and high agility.

Marcus Lohr, Vice President at Woodforest, put it this way, “Having a static IAM point solution is not a good thing. It’s difficult because you have to call the vendor back and hire them under a professional services agreement if you make any changes to your environment.” And change was already happening.

The solution

How does Ivanti fit into Woodforest’s strategy? The Woodforest Bank IT team saw that Ivanti would enable them to centralize all of their process automation. This automation allowed them to grow their private cloud for bank employees. Automation was the missing piece — and it was critical to achieving the nimble stance IT needed for a successful future.

Ivanti offered Woodforest Bank:

  • Faster time to value. Ivanti’s deployment was less than eight weeks compared to six to nine months from other IAM-specific vendors.
  • Streamlined operations. Branch managers can now easily manage employees associated with their branches via Ivanti Identity Director.
  • Improved security. Managers can easily remove users’ access to services as well as provide temporary teller access to services for a specified time.
  • Central repository. Ivanti stores all the employee’s access rights and applications to help with faster, secure and more efficient offboarding.
  • Faster and improved on/offboarding. With Ivanti, Woodforest Bank has automated many onboarding, transfer and offboarding tasks, with a log for improved audit reporting. A process that once took three to five days now takes around 10 to 20 minutes.
  • Easy integration. Ivanti is lightweight, fast and easy to integrate into existing infrastructure. No rip and replace.
  • An established community of Ivanti users. Per Marcus Lohr, “Ivanti has built a nice community. We might have questions which could be answered through support, or by other community members, some of whom could offer us a new way of looking at things.”
  • Exemplary support. “Support is huge for us”, said Lohr. ” If we don’t trust the vendor or the support isn’t holding up, we will drop them immediately.”

The result

Woodforest’s goal for onboarding was to remove rights from all the people who once created users and group changes in the active directory, so the bank’s IT team could limit those key functions to a small sub-team. Everything else completed through Identity Director now provides audit logs through reporting. “We are now 90% automated vs. previously around 30% prior to Ivanti,” said Lohr.

Greater security and cost savings

Before Ivanti, terminating a user account was done with PowerShell and VB scripts, plus manual processes. Even so, the termination process was limited to the termination of the account itself. IT still needed to de-provision home docs by tracking the number of days and then removing them. Email account cancellation wasn’t automatic; the accounts would eventually fall off at a given time. Altogether, termination took three to five days. With Ivanti, the process now takes 20 minutes — with much better security and assurance of compliance.

Before Ivanti, manual and scripted processes required two to three days from Ultipro completion (HR system) before an employee could start working. Now with Ivanti, nine out of 10 times employees begin work the next morning

Woodforest is also experiencing significant cost savings. For example, it has a better count of users, which saves real money because many software vendors charge based on the number of user accounts. In the past, when Woodforest IT reviewed their systems, they found about 500 terminated users’ accounts that still had Active Directory accounts. The culprit? The manual scripts employed to terminate AD accounts simply weren’t working.

The ideal was to create user IDs and access them the minute the user walks through the door. “Today, with Ivanti, that’s a reality,” said Lohr. “When the Woodforest employee is hired in the HR system, the same day that user’s account, security groups, and other related attributes are provided. And it happens within 20 minutes when the data feed comes in from our HR system, Ultipro.”

Looking forward to next steps with Ivanti

Given the experience that the Woodforest Bank IT team has had with Ivanti so far, they have bigger dreams for the future. “We are looking forward to integrating Ivanti even more consistently in our environment, and using it from beginning to end,” said Lohr. “Basically, what I see in the future is the ability to create users’ requests and tie them all the way down to a VDI account. At the back-end, IT can request servers and have them provisioned automatically via Ivanti Identity Director.”

Note: A customer’s results are specific to its total environment/experience, of which Ivanti is a part. Individual results may vary based on each customer’s unique environment.


Ivanti Identity Director

Ivanti Identity Director provides an attribute-based approach to identity management and access with automated provisioning, workflows and self-service.

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