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Microsoft 365 brings a “Modern” Experience and Enhanced Security


Years after the initial implementation of a cloud-based portal, Arcuity’s customer was looking to improve collaboration further within their Microsoft 365 tenant. Arcuity was brought in to design and implement a new security model as well as determine additional Microsoft 365 tools—available with their current licensing—that could be leveraged to drive toward increased efficiency.

A New, Dynamic Security Model

As part of this effort, Arcuity led several workshops with key customer stakeholders to understand their evolving needs and pain points around managing access and security across Microsoft 365. Coming out of these workshops, Arcuity recommended updating the security model to leverage Azure Active Directory, which allowed the creation of dynamic user groups based on logic and user profile attributes, such as location and title. These new dynamic groups were used to manage security on corporate policies as well as security within their SharePoint Online instance and all tools across their Microsoft 365 tenant.

The Modern Approach to Collaboration

As a Microsoft Gold partner, Arcuity learned that Microsoft would be transitioning all SharePoint classic team sites to the new modern UI. With this advanced knowledge, we made the recommendation to our customer to proactively update all sites to the modern UI while also introducing Microsoft Teams to provide additional collaboration features. With Azure Active Directory groups serving as the underlying security structure, the Microsoft Teams implementation included new collaboration channels for all Property sites, nine Department teams, and six Regions—with effortless and endless possibilities for scalability.

Collaboration to Support a Remote Workforce

Arcuity was already underway with this project when the COVID-19 Pandemic hit in early 2020 and forced the world to shift to a remote workforce seemingly overnight. Microsoft Teams was the perfect tool to enable remote work and collaboration, and with the updated security model driving access, the customer was able to keep teams operating at a high level under rapidly changing circumstances.

While the focus of this project was to optimize the customer’s Microsoft 365 tenant for internal collaboration and communication, the next effort is already in progress to apply a similar experience to the customer’s Investor Portal—a secure portal for external property investors to access tax documents, property revenue reports, and other financial information across different portfolios.