How to Leverage Slack and Skype to Save Time in IT Security

How to Leverage Slack and Skype to Save Time in IT Security

Ask 10 IT security professionals about IT security productivity; you’ll quickly find yourself in a heated debate.

Cautious professionals will want to restrict using newer tools and apps because they introduce uncertainty. Other IT security leaders favor innovation and ask, “how can we make these tools work?” rather than aiming to shoot them down. If you want to be seen as a positive contributor to the business, you need to support innovation rather than resist it.

Struggling with IT Security Productivity

Every new communication channel increases your risk exposure. As a consequence, some security professionals want to review and tweak every technology in depth to optimize security. For example, you may want to test Slack thoroughly to see if it meets your IT security requirements. However, you might not be able to stand in the way of progress for long. You’ll have to improve IT security productivity and keep up with the tools your users want to use at work.

The Productivity Benefits of Integrating IT Security and Messaging Services

Like it or not, there’s no such thing as multitasking for humans; you can only switch back and forth between different tasks. At work, this rapid task switching is a problem because there’s a switching cost every time you switch. According to the American Psychological Association, “brief mental blocks created by shifting between tasks can cost as much as 40 percent of someone’s productive time.” Even if you cut that estimate in half, there’s still a significant productivity loss.

If your employees are already living and breathing every day in Slack or Skype, don’t make them switch to another app to get a quick IT security task done. Let them stay focused in Slack and get on with their day. What if every person in your organization could improve productivity by 5% this year by using Apollo? That could improve employee satisfaction and help you achieve more of your goals. If you had more free time at work, you could work on other projects, such as delivering better password training to employees.

Introducing Apollo: The IT Security Chatbot Built to Work with Employee Behavior

Apollo makes identity and access management tasks easier. Instead of lecturing employees and managers to use antiquated systems, Apollo takes a different approach. Instead of the uphill battle of changing employee habits, work with their preferences. If employees like to use chatbots, bring that capability to IT security. For end users, getting account requests approved faster and easier means they can get back to work quicker. For people managers, Apollo means you can finally stop worrying about losing track of an access request and focus on your priorities.

Simple Steps to Improve IT Security Using Apollo, Skype, and Slack

Use these steps to make IT security more convenient for your employees by using the messaging services they already love to use.

1. Identify your most popular messaging service

While Apollo supports multiple messaging services, it’s usually best to start by integrating with a single service. If the initial implementation is successful, you can also add more integrations later.

If you’re unsure which messaging apps are most popular, run a quick survey of your users using Survey Monkey.

2. Implement Apollo

If you’re not sure if it is a good fit yet, request a free trial of Apollo.

3. Integrate Apollo and Slack into your environment

Since Slack integration is built into the product, it only takes a few minutes.

4. Add your IT security requirements

To keep life simple, you might want to start with a single IT security task, such as password resets. In that case, you’ll need to load your password requirements to Apollo.

5. Ask employees to send IT security requests using Slack

Ask five employees to start using Slack (and Apollo) to request a password reset. Ask for their feedback afterward to guide your next steps. For example, you might decide to add support for Skype next.

Tip: If your organization has a formal process for introducing new technology, you’ll need to engage other stakeholders in the organization. For more guidance on this subject, read our post on how to win HR support for your IT security projects. By winning HR’s support, your IT security project is more likely to succeed. In the long term, you’ll have additional allies in the organization for your next major IT project.

What If Your Organization Doesn’t Use Skype or Slack?

Some organizations prefer not to use chat services at work. That doesn’t mean you’re stuck with out-of-date, inefficient processes. Apollo also works with your company’s intranet site, and that’s not all. You can empower employees to use SMS (text messaging) to get identity and access management support. Offering password resets by SMS is important because it makes it easy to get access reinstated if you’re locked out of a system.

Written by Nelson Cicchitto