HR departments have access to a lot of sensitive, private data on employees, including social insurance numbers, banking information and salary details. They might run background checks or keep medical data on file for workplace benefit plans. So, if that data isn’t managed properly, it could have serious consequences and even result in penalties, fees or even legal action.
From the moment a new employee is hired to the time they leave, IT managers need to ensure personal data—and the corresponding HR administrative processes—are secure and compliant. Google Workspace can help simplify compliance with data privacy laws, regulatory mandates and industry frameworks such as General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) and help HR teams stay on track.
Here are a few tips for using Google Workspace to ensure HR compliance:
Create organizational units: You can separate users who manage sensitive employee data (such as HR managers) from those who don’t (such as HR administrative staff). That means only specific users in specific organizational units can access specific files or folders. But it’s important to review this on a regular basis so it’s up to date.
Secure access rights: Using Google Drive, you can secure access rights to files or folders with sensitive employee data. You can also view files in Drive, audit file-sharing permissions and take action when necessary. For example, you can change ownership, change sharing permissions or remove sharing permissions.
Create a shared Drive structure for HR: This allows you to get as granular as you want by assigning permissions to specific files and folders in a shared Google Drive structure for the HR department—which means users in other departments don’t have access to those files and folders. From an administrative standpoint, it’s also easier to set up, remove and audit permissions, improving overall security.
Set up real-time alerts: In Google Drive, you can see who accessed which content (and when), so if you need to investigate a compliance claim you’ll have a digital paper trail. You can also set up real-time alerts for sensitive files or ‘suspicious’ behaviour (for example, if an unauthorized user is trying to download or share sensitive files externally). That way, if a breach occurs, you’ll be alerted in real-time and can act upon it immediately.
Use search to streamline e-discovery: With Google Vault, you can retain, search and export Google Workspace data for e-discovery across Gmail messages, Drive files, Google Chat messages, Google Meet recordings and Google Groups messages to support compliance and regulatory requirements. You can keep data as long as you need it, and you can configure Vault to purge data after a retention period ends, saving administrative time.
Set up data retention schedules for off-boarding: If an employee leaves the company, you can use Google’s sophisticated filtering capabilities to find all private data related to that employee in Google Workspace. You can easily identify and clear private data from Drive files, HR-related emails and calendars to ensure the company remains compliant when off-boarding employees.
Empower users: Perhaps most importantly, Google Workspace empowers employees with the ability to view and update their personal data at any time. But it also helps organizations stay compliant with data protection laws like GDPR, which protects an employee’s right to access, rectify and request the deletion of their personal data.
Staying on top of compliance
Keeping up with the latest compliance mandates and regulations can be challenging, especially if you’re dealing with remote and distributed employees or if you work in a highly regulated industry, like finance or healthcare.
That’s why it’s critical for IT managers to work with the HR team to ensure their administrative processes are compliant, right from the get-go. But HR managers and admins also need to understand data privacy requirements, which can help the IT team identify which data needs to be protected in Google Workspace.
If you’re looking to tighten up compliance in your organization, Pythian can help. As a premier Google Cloud and Specialization Partner and authorized Google Workspace reseller, we offer everything from support and training to best practices, license management and ongoing health checks. Find out how our Managed Google Workspace Administration can work for you.
Pythian can even take care of your licensing. With our license management and optimization service, we’ll do a review of your Google Workspace licenses to optimize your investment. This service is provided annually in three phases, prior to your Google Workspace license renewal:
Phase 1: Reporting & Analytics
We’ll gather and prepare the reporting and analysis for your organization.
Phase 2: Presentation & Review
We’ll facilitate two sessions that present our findings and recommendations on license quantities.
Phase 3: Bulk Changes
We’ll follow up to go over any questions you have and provide fixes or bulk changes as needed.
The benefits of partnership
At Pythian, we have a team of experts that can offer support and services for your Google Workspace licenses. If you happen to be purchasing licenses for both Workspace and Microsoft 365—as is the case in some large organizations—we can also help you manage a mixed licensing environment. We can also help with change management and release management when updates and new versions come out.
Pythian will even work to resolve support issues for you or on your behalf, enabling you to bypass the lengthy queue of support tickets submitted directly to Google. You can open a support ticket for Google Workspace directly with our Pythian support team. And if it happens to be something our team can’t resolve, we can escalate the ticket to tier two Google support.
With Pythian, you also get your own dedicated account manager, so you always have one point of contact and always know who to go to. And we do way more than just Google Workspace. We can help with data analytics, turning your Workspace insights into actionable items. And we’re not a one-trick pony—we can help you optimize your hybrid or multi-cloud environment.
Partnering with Pythian for Google Workspace license management gives you more than just affordable pricing. Personalized support and training, regular check-ins and lightning-quick response times mean you stay ahead of the curve while leveraging your productivity and collaboration capabilities to the fullest.
Want to learn how to get more out of Google Workspace for every department? Download our IT Managers Guide to ensure your organization is getting the most value from Google Workspace.