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CASE STUDY: Identity crisis no problem for dm-drogerie mrkt

By Retail Technology | Thursday September 27 2018

European drugstore chain dm-drogerie mrkt has fine-tuned identity and access management with new software

Dm-drogerie mrkt has been using the One Identity Manager to ensure that individual employees can access the applications they need to deliver excellent customer service and protect data by controlling and monitoring access. 

As a result, the company has boosted overall efficiency, security and service levels, as well as reduce costs by avoiding thousands of hours in lost productivity each week.

The drugstore chain has 1,900 stores in Germany, it's country of origin, and 1,600 additional stores in 12 other countries. 

Security requirements 

For years, dm-drogerie used technologies including Active Directory to manage staff profiles and access privileges. In keeping with the organisation’s flat hierarchical model, employees used shared accounts to access applications. As a result, dm-drogerie had no way to track which employees made system changes, making it difficult for the organisation to meet increasing security requirements around identity governance.

“To address this problem, every store employee needed their own individual account,” explained Steffen Dumjahn, software developer at dm-drogerie markt. “And to do this, we needed more automation when it came to IAM. Otherwise, IT employees would need to provision access manually or semi-manually.”

Managing access in this way for 60,000 employees was not an option because it would significantly drive up costs, increase responsibilities for IT staff and prevent people from always having the instant application access they needed to stay efficient and deliver excellent service.

After evaluating IAM solution options, dm-drogerie chose One Identity Manager. For Dumjahn, the fact that the One Identity Manager interface addressed a lot of processes that most companies need, including the use of standard workflow templates that can be customised for individual processes, was key. 

Global identities

All these capabilities made implementation straightforward. IT staff first created one source of truth for global identities and access privileges by connecting Identity Manager with the organisation’s Active Directory and Azure Active Directory. 

They then connected Identity Manager with dm-drogerie’s applications, including its enterprise resource planning system. Next, they configured Identity Manager to automatically provision or deprovision system access according to employees’ roles in Active Directory.

Today, all staff use their own credentials to access IT tools. As a result, dm-drogerie has improved data security. Not only does it have greater control over who accesses applications but also, the organisation can instantly see who granted and removed access privileges, when they did so, and why. 

The company has also minimised expenses by increasing staff productivity.

“Our top priority is to reduce costs,” said Dumjahn. “We do this with One Identity Manager by automatically creating accounts and setting rights for our employees. They can work on the floor and keep shelves stocked without having to worry about requesting system access.”  

At dm-drogerie markt, the automation of IAM workflows has translated into smooth workflows and better service. “IAM is a core business tool, but we know we are doing a better job when people know less about it and our central identity system,” Dumjahn said.

“If every one of our 60,000 employees spent just one minute each day to care about his account or to request the access that he needs to do something like ordering or looking up a product, we would lose about 1,000 working hours each day. That’s a lot of time a person could otherwise spend on working inside the store with customers. We avoid that with One Identity,” he