Requirement #2 for a Modern Directory – Ubiquity

Written by Rajat Bhargava on November 4, 2014

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This is our third installment of our series of blog posts discussing the requirements of a modern directories. In our first post, we reviewed the five keys to a modern directory:

  1. Cloud-based
  2. Ubiquitous
  3. Easy management
  4. Security
  5. Simplicity

First, we discussed the need for an innovative, new directory service to be cloud-based. The second requirement is ubiquity. Ubiquity is an interesting word in this context as we don’t mean it to say that the directory is everywhere, but rather it works with everything. Technically, if a directory is cloud-based, it should function virtually worldwide. For the purpose of this post, the term ubiquity is focused on ensuring that a modern directory service works with everything. Specifically, it works with the myriad devices that comprise a modern workplace.

But before a modern directory can be everywhere and working with everything, it must first be functionally configured to be at the center of an organization. The directory service must be the single, secure user store and the nucleus of all IT authentication, access, and user control. To do this, the directory must be able to integrate with different types of devices and applications like:

  • Single sign-on (SSO) vendors
  • Cloud-based applications such as Salesforce, Dropbox, and other CRM systems
  • Cloud-based IT components
  • Various end-user compute devices such as Macs, Linux desktops and laptops, and mobile phones and tablets

Myriad devices and applications pose a complex problem to the antiquated directory services solutions OpenLDAP and AD, which have generally assumed that all workplace machines were Microsoft PCs. Nowadays, people use various types of devices (Macs) and platforms for work (Google Apps, Microsoft Office 365, AWS, and many others). A modern directory service must be flexible to these new workplace scenarios and work ubiquitously with any device or application. Further, as more infrastructures move to the cloud—in the form of IaaS, PaaS, or SaaS systems—a modern identity provider must be able to manage access to those systems, too, as a part of the overall IT infrastructure.

The modern directory service will be one of the most critical applications within an organization. In fact, it really sits right above the network in terms of the stack. Without a network, your organization won’t function. The next closest thing to an enterprise-wide, mission critical system is the user directory. Without the user management system, your employees can’t do their jobs.

Jump To The Modern Directory Cloud

The converse is also true. With a well-functioning, ubiquitous directory, your employees will have the necessary access to do their jobs. When you go searching for how to enable your team to do what they need without having you do all of the heavy lifting, look for the Directory-as-a-Service® platform from JumpCloud®. It’s the modern directory to meet all your needs.

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