Gösgen Nuclear Power Plant

As a nuclear facility, Gösgen Nuclear Power Plant must maintain high levels of security and ensure that only authorized personnel have access to buildings and IT systems. Working with its NetIQ partner, SKyPRO, Gösgen Nuclear Power Plant implemented NetIQ Identity Manager, helping it to provision and deprovision access rights quickly and easily.


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“We estimate that Identity Manager has reduced our user management workload by 50 percent since we no longer have to set up or delete the same user account multiple times in different systems.”Thomas SalzmannHead of IT Infrastructure, Gösgen Nuclear Power Plant

About Gösgen Nuclear Power Plant

Founded in 1979, Gösgen Nuclear Power Plant generates 8,000 GWh of electricity every year, serving thousands of homes across Switzerland. The plant employs around 500 people.

Challenge

As a nuclear facility, Gösgen Nuclear Power Plant must maintain high levels of security and ensure only authorized personnel have access to buildings and IT systems. It is the IT department’s responsibility to deliver a simple, cost-effective method of managing security.

“One of the big challenges we face is user management,” said Thomas Salzmann, head of IT Infrastructure at Gösgen. “We need to provide access for our 500 full-time employees plus up to 2,000 external staff and inspectors. Many of our external staff come to the plant from other countries and stay only for short periods, so it is vital to give them access to systems as soon as possible.”

The power plant also uses unique equipment codes to log more than 370,000 pieces of equipment in its maintenance planning, document management and computer-aided design (CAD) systems.

“We needed to synchronize the equipment codes and user access across different systems,” said Salzmann.

“We looked for a single solution that could solve both problems.”

Our Solution

Gösgen consulted its NetIQ Partner, SKyPRO, to determine the best solution for its needs. SKyPRO helped the Gösgen team design and implement a solution based on Identity Manager. The implementation took approximately six months, and the team has continued to extend the solution across additional systems since going live.

Identity Manager provides a metadirectory that interfaces with the plant’s key systems, enabling easy, event-driven synchronization of user accounts and equipment codes across numerous systems, including Microsoft Active Directory, Microsoft SharePoint, Microsoft Exchange, Microsoft Dynamics ERP and HR (a servicing and maintenance system), a CAD system, and several Oracle and Microsoft SQL Server databases. The solution even connects to the plant’s entry system, locking external staff out of the facility once their contracts come to an end.

“Identity Manager gives us the ability to interface easily with almost any system,” said Salzmann. “If we introduce any new applications in the future, we can integrate them into the Identity Manager environment quickly and easily.”

Results

The solution has simplified the creation and deletion of user accounts, providing a clear process that helps the IT department avoid mistakes.

“We estimate that Identity Manager has reduced our user management workload by 50 percent since we no longer have to set up or delete the same user account multiple times in different systems,” said Salzmann.

“With Identity Manager, we can provision accounts in just minutes rather than hours, enabling external employees to start work almost as soon as they arrive on our premises.”

With centralized identity management, IT staff can give employees a single set of credentials to access all applications. This has dramatically reduced the number of passwords users need to remember as well as the number of password-related helpdesk calls.

“Previously, the helpdesk received around three password-related calls per week, creating around 1.5 hours of administrative work per week for IT staff,” said Salzmann.

“With Identity Manager, users only need to remember one password, so they are less likely to forget it, and those who do can reset their own passwords.”

The ability to synchronize equipment codes between systems is also an important time-saving feature for staff at the plant.

“With 370,000 separate equipment codes to manage, it was almost impossible to ensure that we had the same data in our maintenance, CAD and document management systems,” said Salzmann.

“Using Identity Manager to synchronize the information not only saves huge amounts of time, it also gives us more accurate, consistent data, which helps us maintain the plant safely and more efficiently.”

“SKyPRO has helped us build a solution that delivers excellent value for Gösgen Nuclear Power Plant,” said Salzmann. “The versatility of Identity Manager will help us improve security and reduce administrative costs in the long term.”

Energy/Gas

SwitzerlandEurope

  • Simplified the creation and deletion of user accounts
  • Provided a clear process that helps the IT department avoid mistakes.
  • Centralized identity management

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