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Using Quadrotech Reporting to Optimize Office 365 in Less Time

Limagrain Logo

Quadrotech Customer Since 2014
Industry: Agriculture
Headquarters: Saint-Beauzire, France
Company Size: Over 9,600 employees in 55 countries

Limagrain, an international cooperative group created and directed by French farmers, moves agriculture forward to meet food challenges. As a creator and producer of plant and cereal varieties, the Group markets field seeds, vegetable seeds and cereal products intended for farmers, growers, home gardeners and for agri-food industrialists and consumers.

Limagrain makes sales of almost 2.4 billion Euros and has more than 9,600 employees spread over 55 countries, including more than 2,100 working in research. The Limagrain Cooperative has almost 2,000 farmer members.

The Struggle to Optimize a New Office 365 Tenant

In March 2012, Limagrain started their migration to Microsoft Office 365. By the end of 2013, they were utilizing the Microsoft cloud productivity platform and all the benefits it had to offer. Limagrain used the built-in Office 365 reports provided by Microsoft as much as possible to get information on Office 365 usage and activity, but they also created PowerShell scripts to retrieve user data to build their own reports. This was taking a considerable amount of the IT staff’s time, and it was not very flexible. If they wanted to manipulate the data in a certain way, they had to think through it beforehand, or rerun the scripts with that angle in mind. In January 2014, Limagrain started a trial of Quadrotech’s reporting tool and decided to order it just a few weeks later. They also tested a competitor’s reporting tool but found the reports far less comprehensive than Quadrotech’s reporting application.

“The setup and on-boarding process for Quadrotech reporting was quite easy and clearly documented. When we first purchased the tool, SSO with our Azure AD was not yet available, but when the feature was introduced, we switched over for a better user experience,” shared Vincent, User Environment IT Expert at Limagrain.

Identifying Inactive Office 365 Users for Cost Savings

Limagrain’s initial focus and use case for reporting was identifying and cleaning up inactive users. Vincent explained, “Due to the migration, we had a huge number of inactive users. There were lots of people who were within our former Active Directory and mail systems but who were never migrated to Office 365 as they left the company during the migration period. Quadrotech’s reporting tool allowed us to do some quick cost optimization related to these inactive accounts.” Along with reporting on user activity/inactivity, Vincent also used this advanced reporting for data coherence.

During this inactive user optimization, Vincent discovered that some inactive user accounts needed to be kept for extended leave scenarios or legal constraints. As a result, he developed a script to make AD Last Logon an extended attribute. He then created a custom report in Quadrotech’s tool to get a global view of user activity in on-premises AD and the cloud. The IT support team then analyzed the shared custom report and cleaned up the appropriate inactive users.

Supporting IT Chargeback and Validating Permissions

Along with optimizing license costs and relocating licenses for inactive users, Limagrain also utilizes Quadrotech reporting to provide a yearly snapshot of all Limagrain users with attached licenses to their IT billing department. This allows the team to easily provide verification for chargeback requests to the different Business Units.

Additionally, Limagrain uses the reporting tool to strengthen security by verifying and auditing permissions and licensing. Vincent said, “We have a few usage-restricted mail domains. The Business Units regularly receive the list of users accessing such mail domains, which can then be cross-checked with approved users. If a non-approved employee is accessing a restricted domain, the team can update permissions accordingly.” Limagrain also uses the scheduled report feature to provide regular licensing reports to Business Units to ensure the appropriate employees have access to CRM, Microsoft Project, and other workloads.

The Quadrotech reporting use cases from Limagrain are near endless. Vincent shared another example, “I implemented RACI on our Office 365 tenant, so I changed a lot of admin authorization. I used Quadrotech reporting to pull the list of actual admin access and do some pre-cleaning. I also used the access list as a ‘backup’ to easily rollback settings had I needed to.”

Custom Reporting for Unique and Specific Reporting Requirements

Within Limagrain, the IT Support team is the main group with access to Quadrotech reporting. They utilize a variety of reports and occasionally save and/or schedule custom reports that deliver specific data they need regular access to.

Vincent explains, “My favorite functionality within Quadrotech’s tool was previously the custom report and is now the custom pivot report capability. It allows me to quickly dig within our tenant to find valuable information linked to our usage. We’re actually doing some cleaning within our Active Directory. Since users are tagged using custom attributes for locations/companies, I’m able to quickly create a custom pivot to group all users by location and then target the few users who need to be moved from one subsidiary to another. Without Quadrotech reporting, I could do the same with PowerShell, but it would take up much more of my time and there would be a higher probability of error.”

‘Is there a favorite?’

“I don’t think I have a favorite report. All Quadrotech reports are valuable depending on my need at the time. I do find the Office 365 Service Status report very useful. It not only allows us to see what issues are affecting our tenant at any given time, but also gives the history of issues. This isn’t something that Microsoft provides and from time to time is very helpful in understanding an issue that support team members or users experience that we’re unable to reproduce a few hours or days later,” said Vincent.

Simplifying Reporting and Saving Time

For Limagrain, Quadrotech reporting has been instrumental in aggregating and storing a lot of high-value usage data, and storage and permission settings linked to Office 365 users. Quadrotech’s solution allows Limagrain to quickly search and report without having to first think about which PowerShell command would provide the correct data and then executing the command and formatting the output. With Quadrotech reporting, Limagrain can regularly query their Office 365 tenant against established compliance policies and permissions to ensure a consistent and secure environment for easier management and administration.

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