Seinäjoki University of Applied Sciences (SeAMK) and Sedu (Sedu), the Educational Consortium of Seinäjoki, form a Finnish training hub for more than 10,000 people. Modernised user management provides a foundation of digitalisation and ensures the quality of services.


"We introduced the new Peppi student information system, and at the same time we decided to renew our user management together with Sedu,” says Veli-Matti Mäkelä, IT Designer at SeAMK.

"Before the project, our user management was laborious, and it was a huge amount of work to solve errors. The self-coded application required a lot of follow-up and was fault sensitive,” says Mikko Kuja-Lipasti, IT designer at Sedu.


"We wanted an Identity and Access management service that doesn't require much care and can be easily expanded and developed. We needed a secure partner with whom we can jointly build high-quality user management for the needs of our education. From the service provider, we required experience in similar projects."

"Pulse Integration met all our criteria, and their experts had experience in user management projects made for different educational institutions,” says Mäkelä.


Identity and access management in order throughout the life cycle 


The service covers staff, all students, and external users. SeAMK employs nearly 400 people and the school has approximately 5500 degree students and also open university students.  Sedu has 600 employees and more than 5,000 students. In 2018, the student flow was 12,500 in Sedu.


"We can now manage staff and student identities and permissions automated throughout their life cycle based on information from primary sources more efficiently. Automated user management plays a very important role in the entire operation of our educational institutions, as the number of users is so large. User management work is now being handled more efficiently than before. External users, such as curators and healthcare professionals, are also covered by user management,” says Kuja-Lipasti. "We are informed of errors and warnings that require action. User management now takes a few minutes a day, having previously taken 2-4 hours a day to work on it. Time has become freed up for more productive work."


Staff and students have access to the tools they need to study, such as Microsoft 365. They have access to the information systems, services and teaching materials they need with a single id. You can use the account to log in to online courses and sign up for courses. The user management solution implemented by Pulsen now automatically takes care of the identity, including SeAMK's foreign students. "User Identity and access rights are automatically disabled, when the end of studies or employment relationship is known", Mäkelä says.


Foundation of digitalisation


Pulsen provides educational institutions with support services, ideas, and expertise for developing user and access management. Pulsen Support only has experienced professionals who can resolve even the most challenging support requests. Thanks to support and maintenance services, the service is also suitable for organizations that do not have their own IDM experts.


"We can get help quickly, if we are not able to solve situations that require measures ourselves,” says Kuja-Lipasti. "The number of support cases and errors related to user management has decreased clearly. It is more efficient to solve errors now. It's made easier by the fact that we know them, and they know us. Modern user management enables the promotion of digitalisation in a completely different way. We can utilise Teams and cloud services in studying and teaching more efficiently", Mäkelä says.

Since the reform, cooperation between Pulsen, SeAMK and Sedu has continued to be close, for example, in monthly follow-up meetings. "We can effectively renew our user management in the event of changes in our primary sources. We have been able also to optimise the use of O365 licenses."


Educational institutions invest in user management


"Educational institutions are now investing heavily in identity management, which is an absolute basic prerequisite for digitalisation. We know the processes, information systems and needs of educational institutions. We offer a unique self-service portal and versatile workflow management. We take advantage of existing licenses for customers that come through Microsoft license agreements. We provide comprehensive reporting on permissions and roles for daily use and auditing with Microsoft Power BI. The reports show who has access to and which systems,” says Ilkka Nissinen, Senior IAM Architect at Pulsen Integration Oy.


Pulsen also provides a clear roadmap for developing identity management and works closely with the Microsoft school team.