IT Admin: Looking to migrate to Office 365 but need Single-Sign-On? The solution: Solulan through Microsoft Azure Active Directory

9 juin 2015 par Rija Raharinosy
IT Admin: Looking to migrate to Office365 but need a Single-Sign-On? The solution: Solulan through Microsoft Azure Active Directory

We recently completed a migration to Office365 for one of our customers. The IT Team was tired of managing multiple on-premise email and file servers and with IT resources more and more solicited by critical client-facing projects, the customer strategically decided to move to Office365 E3 and free up much needed resources. Another component is that they were not ready to move to OneDrive as they had been using Box, a cloud-based storage service and needed to include Box and other cloud based enterprise solutions such as WebEx within their Office365 Admin portal for seamless identity management and security control. That was not a problem thanks to Azure Active Directory. On a more strategic view, they needed a solution to manage and track end-users identity, and access to all the Microsoft and non-Microsoft cloud business apps like Facebook or Twitter that were increasingly being used by the end users and most importantly, needed a cost effective way to manage the solution. The customer’s requirements was that the end-users needed to log into their business cloud apps using their regular enterprise username and password with Single-Sign-On (SSO) for everyone for all apps with no waiting time.

This post summarizes how as an IT Admin, through Microsoft Azure Active Directory and Microsoft Azure Active Directory Premium, you can leverage Office365 to save time and dollars by managing and providing your users access to their favorite business cloud apps (including competing apps like Google Apps, webEx, Citrix…)  by providing them Single-Sign-On (SSO) and still provide value-add security services such as self-service password reset, self-service group management, group-based application access, advanced security reports and multi-factor authentication.

1. Introduction to Cloud Identity and Access Management

As an IT Admin, as you migrate to Office365, you typically want to make sure you can manage your users and all the apps they can access from one single control Panel. This is what Azure Active Directory does and it is FREE! It enables you to centrally manage employee access and provide Single-Sign-On (SSO) to all your Microsoft and non-Microsoft services you give access to your users (Office365, CRM, and thousands of non-Microsoft apps like Box, DropBox, Google Apps, weBex etc…) and provide multi-factor authentication to protect access to sensitive company information and to help protect your organization from malicious attacks.

In a nutshell, Azure Active Directory enables you to:
- Empower your users as you enable them to work from any location using any device; giving them always-on access to all their work resources using a single set of credentials protected with Multi-Factor Authentication; after a user has signed in, they get single sign-on access to their all their apps and data.
- Track and manage all apps used in your organization:  you can easily add and manage SaaS applications in the public cloud by using the Azure AD, your users can then quickly sign in to your Microsoft and third-party Apps with no waiting time;
- Set up user provisioning to automatically sync users to your app and back;
- Prevent malicious attacks: monitor access and anomaly reports to help secure your AD Active Directory for full visibility so you can mitigate risks to a minimum
- Add any of your own Line-Of-Business App (example: your HR app) for single-sig-on, identity, and access management, querying the directory and more.

2. Scalability and optimum security with Azure Active Directory Premium

Typically, as the IT Admin of a large enterprise with thousands of users globally dispersed, you might want to beef up your identity management capabilities and reduce your help desk calls.
Azure Active Directory Premium will include the following services to help you minimize risks:
- Self-Service Password Reset: you empower users the ability their password
- Self-Service Group Management: you empower group owners to approve requests and maintain group memberships
- Group-based application access: you empower groups of users to access in bulk their Cloud apps
- Advanced Security reports: Monitor and access to your cloud applications with logs that show anomalies and reports that flag inconsistent access patterns – Advanced reports help you improve access security and respond to threats
- Company Branding: add your company logo and color scheme to your Enterprise Sign In and Access Panel pages
- Multi-factor authentication : be empowered to prevent unauthorized access to your on-prem or cloud applications by providing another layer of authentication – in AD Premium, you get a license to deploy a Multi-Factor Authentication server for additional security on premises applications such as remote access VPN, and web applications as well as cloud applications using Active Directory Federation Services (ADFS). Azure Active Directory Premium comes with Identity Manager Servers and user licenses to support any combination of hybrid identity solutions in the case you have a variety of on-premises directories and databases that you want to sync directly to Azure AD. 


In conclusion, Azure AD and Azure AD Premium are the best way to secure and minimize confusion within your user base as far as accessing your business apps are concerned. On top of providing ease of use to your users, you also maintain high grade security empowering you to always know and track what are the Business (or non-business) apps used by your users.

If you would like to read my future posts, then please click ‘Follow’ at the top of the article and feel free to connect via Twitter.



No time to read my post? No worries, watch the video below to learn how you can activate Azure Active Directory and Azure Active Directory Premium

No time to watch my video? No worries, click here to download my Cloud Identity and Access Management Infographic and read it at your own pace!

No time to download my Infographic, now worries,  click here to setup a time to talk to me about your Office365 migration and cloud identity management questions.

About Rija Raharinosy
Rija is looking to build the next UC software company and is the VP of Sales of Solulan, a Canadian Microsoft Gold Partner with presence in US and Europe.

We are rapidly growing and hiring Lync architects and sales champions in US, Canada and France.

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