Are you still handling employee onboarding yourself?
In our series “Unexpected Google Admins” (e.g. Amplify Partners, runZero, Big Network), we’ve observed that CEOs, CTOs, or Founders often fall into managing all aspects of Google Workspace themselves. This consumes valuable time and creates bottlenecks, with endless back-and-forth questions like “Which groups should I add this employee to?”, “What email address do they want?”, “When do they start?”, “What should I change their name to?”, and “What is their backup email, phone number, etc.?” It also entails founders spending time on password resets and second-factor authentication requests. Managing these tasks can be overwhelming at worst, and distracting at best.
Wouldn’t it be great if you could easily delegate these tasks before hiring a dedicated IT administrator? Instead of creating another super admin or distracting a senior technical person, consider distributing responsibility and empowering team, group, or department leaders to manage their own part of the organization.
Embracing a Decentralized Organizational Structure
A decentralized organizational structure gives department heads and project managers decision-making authority and responsibility within a framework set up by senior management. This frees senior management to spend more time on strategic planning and big-picture decisions. To learn more about the benefits of a decentralized structure, check out this MasterClass article.
Let’s explore how to implement such a structure using Google Workspace roles.
Google Workspace Roles for Decentralized Administration
As the super admin of your Google Workspace org, you have absolute control over anything and everything in your org. To secure your super admin account, follow the tips in The Adventures of super(er) Google admin: reduce your attack surface for free!. Most people are aware there are other roles besides plain old user and Super Admin, but may not know how to assign roles in practice to decentralize Workspace Admin tasks. Let’s take a look.
Different roles available in Google Workspace
Here are some noteworthy roles that you can mix and match:
- Super Admin: Has complete access to all features in the Admin console and Admin API, managing every aspect of the organization’s account, including calendar privileges. When you set up Google Workspaces, that’s you by default.
- Groups Admin: Has full control over Google Groups tasks in the Admin console, managing group creation, membership, access settings, and viewing organizational units.
- User Management Admin: Can perform all actions on non-administrator users, managing user profiles, organizational units, and user security settings.
- Help Desk Admin: Can reset passwords for non-administrator users and view user profiles and organizational units.
- Services Admin: Manages certain service settings and devices, including Calendar, Google Drive, and Docs, as well as alert center access.
To learn more about roles, visit this Google Support article. For information on creating custom roles and attributes, check out this guide.
Implementing Decentralized Administration with Roles
To use roles effectively, you can try this:
- Create a new organization unit (OU), e.g., “Engineering”.
- Move all relevant employees to the new OU.
- Assign the “User Management Admin” to the organization leader.
With these steps in place, the organization leader can now onboard, offboard, and manage the security aspects of all the employees within the OU. The next time a new employee joins, ask the OU leader to handle it!
By decentralizing administration tasks, your organization can become more efficient and productive, allowing everyone to focus on their core responsibilities.
Stay tuned for more information on how to optimize your organization’s performance.
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