Obtaining Data Center Access for New Employees and Vendors

I have chosen to discuss this process mainly because it has been a significant thorn in my side over the past couple months. The process is an essential step in the onboarding process for any new employee or vendor working on my team. Because a substantial portion of our jobs require physical access to multiple data centers it is important that new employees and vendors have access to these locations on their first day.

For me the process begins when my Director notifies of a date when a new employee or vendor will be starting work. This notification often comes via email and will include the name of the individual and their employment information. Also included would be the name of the company they work for if they are a vendor.

Once I have the important information I then have to print out a form that needs to be filled out for our office administrator. This form is attached to a copy of the picture taken for the badge and filed in the building that has the datacenter in it. I then have to print and fill out another form that goes to the corporate office down the street that is used for fingerprinting and the actual production of the badge. Finally I have to fill out an electronic ticket in our company’s internal ticket system for our Critical Infrastructure team to review and approve access for the new employee or vendor. This ticket often requires additional information that isn’t included in the initial request from my Director. When this occurs I am forced to use generic numbers as place holders so the ticket can be created and access approval isn’t delayed. Once the missing information is known I can go in and edit the database so our notification systems are properly updated.

If all goes as planned when it is the employee or vendor’s first day I then have to take the hand written paperwork along with a hard copy of the Critical Infrastructure team’s approval first to our office admin and get the individuals picture taken. This is a digital image and is shared with the corporate office admin down the street.

When I have confirmation that the badge has been made and access has been established I have to take the new employee or vendor down the street to the corporate office. Here submit the second document and another copy of the Critical Infrastructure Team approval and the individual gets finger printed and is given their badge.

The final step is to take the new employee or vendor to each office and data center to verify access and give them a tour. This wasn’t always required but human error during the badge creation process occurs too often and if the error isn’t detected within 48 hours, we have to start the whole process over again.


This process is extremely tedious and bulky. In my opinion we shouldn’t have to use physical documentation at all during this process and everyone should work off of the Critical Infrastructure Team’s Ticket.  By working off of one ticket that has the same information that is hand written on forms less waste is created and the process is cleaner and more efficient. Additionally I don’t understand why the same person that creates the badge can’t be the one who takes the picture. In my opinion I feel the Critical Infrastructure team should own the entire process but for various political reasons that isn’t possible.


One thought on “Obtaining Data Center Access for New Employees and Vendors

  1. You have definitely captured what appears to be an inefficient process. I can see why it would be frustrating. I’m fascinated that there does not appear to be a comma in this entire post. Commas help your reader. It offers a pause before the next thought.

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