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When It Comes to SaaS Management and Security Risks, You Can’t Be The “Cool Mom.”

Being super permissive so your kids like you is great for laughs, but when it comes to managing SaaS at your company…not so much.

Sandi Green, Product Marketing @Lumos
4 Min Read
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https://lumos.com/when-it-comes-to-saas-management-and-security-risks-you-cant-be-the-cool-mom

This story is part of Security Essentials, the IT Vault’s practical advice for getting the most out of your security team.

This story is part of Foundations Essentials, a collection of must-reads for all IT professionals.

There’s a scene in the movie “Mean Girls,” where the main character shows up at a friend’s house and is shocked at how permissive her mother is. She lets her kids do whatever they want because she wants to be the “cool mom.” Portrayed expertly by the talented Amy Poehler, It’s both hilarious and cringeworthy.

Being super permissive so your kids like you is great for laughs, but when it comes to managing SaaS at your company…not so much.

We get it. You don't want any obstacles between your employees and getting work done. You want to put the latest tools in their hands. You just want them to be happy. Happy employees are productive employees, right?

So, you might get a little lax with permissions, or give in to the argument that the collaboration tool that the Product team is using will NOT work for the Marketing team, so you compromise. You might feel like you’re handing out access like candy. And you immediately regret it, because the risks are real, and they are definitely not cool: overprovisioning, underprovisioning, slow onboarding, dragged-out offboarding, compliance breaches, high licensing costs, increased risks from compromised employee accounts, insider threats – and that’s just the tip of the iceberg.

So, you turn to SaaS management tools for both spending and user management. Saas spending management tools help your IT team maintain control of app purchasing, licensing, and renewals as well as remove duplicate apps and unused licenses to cut costs. SaaS user management tools help IT teams manage provisioning and de-provisioning, role changes, and any other permissions for all of a company’s apps.

Now You’re Covered, Right? Not Quite.

While these tried-and-true SaaS tools help, you (and your IT team) still feel the weight of app and permission sprawl. Look around. Today, employees use an average of 110 SaaS apps, up from eight just five years ago. Free trials are easy to download and install. As many as 60% of SaaS users are shadow admins. SIXTY. PERCENT. And everyone with a company credit card is now an IT buyer. Access is out of control. Permissions are all over the place. And for all that, the “kids” still aren’t happy. Around here, we call that the APPocalypse. So maybe It’s time to stop being the cool parent, and end SaaS management as we know it by automating access requests, reviews, and license management with self-service.

Now don’t get us wrong, we’re not knocking SaaS – just the way most companies are managing it right now. SaaS spend management platforms are a huge step forward, but these tools alone cannot meet IT’s security and compliance goals. And while SaaS user management tools are a great start for managing app access, they don’t solve the entire problem. Even with SaaS user management tools in place, 25% of IT tickets are requests for access. And over- and underprovisioning remain a huge problem as responsibilities change and your team tries to keep up.

So What If We Tried... Self-Service?

At Lumos, we took inspiration from what we had in our pockets – our smartphones. Similar to a SaaS user management tool, any new phone comes with a number of pre-installed apps based on geolocation. Consumers can then visit the app store to browse and download pre-vetted apps, which is just like self-service provisioning.

Best of all, self-service has both spending management and user management functionality, while also addressing the pain points mentioned above. And from a scalability standpoint, self-service allows employees to request what they need, so IT no longer needs to pre-configure workflows for hundreds of apps.

Imagine this: IT and employee needs are no longer at odds. Employees never have too little or too much access. They’re more productive because they’re no longer waiting on IT for app access. And IT can keep costs low and security and compliance high–all without a huge investment.

It all comes together in Lumos Self-Service SaaS Management. Unlike existing SaaS user management tools, Lumos’ self-service capabilities automate access requests for employees by orchestrating access approval workflows and logs. By combining the most important features of SaaS spend and user management tools with self-service, we help companies like yours increase workforce productivity and compliance readiness. No more IT access request tickets. No more app permissions sprawl. No more scrambling to pull together information for an audit.

More productivity. Less risk. And there’s nothing cooler than that.

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