We needed to be able to understand real day-to-day transaction usage in order to determine what authorization to provide a department or group of users
Palo Alto, California (PRWEB) March 4, 2009
Tidal Software, a leading provider of application scheduling and performance management software, today announced that its customer, Tennant Company, has completed successfully, a comprehensive audit of global SAP transaction usage using Tidal Transaction Analyzer. According to Tennant, the Tidal solution greatly simplifies the auditing process and enhances security by providing a clear picture of transaction usage. Tennant Company is a world-leading manufacturer of indoor and outdoor environmental cleaning solutions and specialty floor coatings.
From a security standpoint, Tennant needed a clear and specific understanding of which transactions were being executed on a daily basis and by whom, in order to restructure and update their transaction approvals on a global basis. The complete and accurate picture of transaction usage provided by Tidal Transaction Analyzer allowed Tennant to streamline their transaction approval process.
"We needed to be able to understand real day-to-day transaction usage in order to determine what authorization to provide a department or group of users," said Mary Burdorf, Tennant's security administrator. "The only real way to do that was to be able to see what they have actually executed over a given period of time. The tendency over time is that transactions that a user once needed are no longer needed, but the transactional authority remains for years. Another critical point was that we had to make sure that all our authorizations were consistent with real need, and that there were no segregation of duty conflicts. Tidal Transaction Analyzer provided us with a very clear picture of transaction usage, and it was very easy to use."
"Without Tidal's Transaction Analyzer we simply would not have been able to conduct the audit," Burdorf continued. "It would have required accumulating the data for a long period of time, then downloading it into a database that we would have had to define. Then we'd have to spend a lot of time looking at the results in that database. The whole process would have been too cumbersome to do at all."
Tidal's Transaction Analyzer provides Tennant with all the transaction information they need right at their fingertips. They can access it at any time to determine if a given transaction is really needed, or what impact removing it would have on users who are assigned to it.
"For example, we could look at a particular transaction and determine that there were, say, 130 users assigned to it, but that it wasn't currently being used by any of them," said Burdorf. "That way we could be sure that removing the transaction would not have a negative effect on any of them."
Burdorf explained that before deploying Tidal Transaction Analyzer, we would have had to start with a blank page and guess which transactions a user really needed.
"That process is both time consuming and confusing," Burdorf continued. "Without Transaction Analyzer you are truly working with a blank page not really knowing what a particular user needs. With Transaction Analyzer we can go to a specific business process area, say customer service, and see that they have access to 400 transactions. We can also see that everyone in the department has only executed 50 transactions. That allows us to clean and modify access completely within the actual rules and requirements of those users."
Another important requirement for accurately streamlining SAP transactions is the global nature of Tennant Company. "We work in the main office here in Golden Valley, Minnesota, but Tennant's operations are very global," said Burdorf. "We have offices in Europe, Asia, and Australia as well as the America's. They all use SAP, and they are all in the same system. Tennant has a centralized SAP instance servicing the global organization."
"Without Tidal Transaction Analyzer, the global authorization role redesign process would have been overwhelming," continued Burdorf. "The total redesign took about a year and a half to complete with myself and two contractors working on it. That may sound like a lot of time, but when you start drilling down into the details of a transaction you find yourself interviewing the whole department to find out what they have executed. Without using Tidal Transaction Analyzer, it would have taken at least twice as long, and I cringe trying to think of what tools we would have had to use to get the task completed at all."
Tidal Transaction Analyzer allowed Burdorf and her team to greatly streamline the process. They were able to sit down with the managers of a department and show them all the transactions that had been executed. Then a decision could quickly be made about which ones they really needed.
"Having all the details so efficiently at hand made it much easier dealing with the department heads," said Burdorf. "We had essentially done all the upfront work for them, so meetings with them were quick and efficient. That's a very important requirement when you are dealing with business department heads because their time is so valuable. They've got to keep the business running."
Burdorf explained that security is always the "low man on the totem pole" because people are afraid they will take things away from them that they need. The data from Tidal's Transaction Analyzer allowed the security team to show them that they are getting exactly what they need and not anything they do not need.
"My experience with showing the results from Transaction Analyzer to department heads is that they were pleased with how easy to read the reports were," said Burdorf. "They were also often surprised at the actual usage because they thought certain transactions had been used more frequently than others."
According to Burdorf, the most important thing about the data generated by Tidal Transaction Analyzer is that it clearly showed that none of the transactions they would lose would prevent them from doing their jobs. The tool allowed the security team to not only see how many times a person had executed a transaction, but also when they did it to see a calendar pattern of need. They could also see when a particular transaction executed a particular program. This additional level of detail allowed them to include some specific customization of the approval process.
"Thanks to Tidal Transaction Analyzer we were able to complete this massive reorganization of transaction approvals in a very reasonable timeframe," said Burdorf. "But probably the best thing about it was that Transaction Analyzer data provided us with the credibility we needed when dealing with company department heads."
"Through better automation Tidal has simplified the otherwise arduous task of auditing for security and compliance," said Thomas Hooker, Tidal's vice president of marketing. "Any company that wants to track and understand its SAP transactions easily will benefit from Tidal Transaction Analyzer. We invite the SAP user community to learn more about this product."
About Tennant Company
Tennant Company is a recognized leader in designing, manufacturing and marketing solutions that help create a cleaner, safer world. Products by Tennant include equipment used to maintain indoor and outdoor surfaces and coatings for repairing, protecting and adding beauty to concrete floors as well as equipment parts, service, maintenance and financing. Tennant is headquartered in Minneapolis and has worldwide marketing and manufacturing operations. Company stock is traded on the New York Stock Exchange.
About Tidal Software
Tidal Software is a leading provider of application scheduling and performance management software that radically simplifies IT operations by automating and integrating performance and process management. Tidal's solution puts IT operations management into the business process using new levels of automation, visibility, and control over systems. Tidal makes applications such as SAP®, PeopleSoft®, and Oracle E-business Suite™ more efficient, reliable, and secure to return greater business value. Tidal also gives IT deep visibility into and precise control over new SOA-based composite solutions consisting of packaged applications and custom components in Microsoft .NET and Java. General Mills, HP, ING Direct, Microsoft, and T-Mobile are among the Tidal customers who use Tidal to reduce operational costs by running IT at higher efficiency rates and containing overall data center footprints. Privately held, Tidal is venture-backed by Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers, Novus Ventures, Panorama Capital, and VantagePoint Venture Partners. For more information, contact Tidal Software at (650) 475-4600 or visit http://www.tidalsoftware.com.
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