Productboard’s mission is simple—help companies make products that matter and get the right ones to market faster. Over 6,000 companies use Productboard’s innovative product management platform to better understand what their users need, prioritize what to build next, and align everyone around their roadmap.
As Productboard’s book of business grows, so does its workforce. With over 500 employees working around the world, and more joining every day, the company relies on SaaS applications to drive productivity, employee engagement, innovation, revenue, and more.
When IT Ops & SaaS Ops Manager Jakub Sůva first joined Productboard, he quickly realized their SaaS ecosystem needed a fresh set of eyes.
“I asked for a list of apps and users, and nobody really knew what we had, what apps we paid for, or who was managing them,” said Sůva.
Like many organizations, Productboard worked under the assumption that most every newly acquired application was approved by IT, security, legal, and finance. Little did they know that many employees were adopting apps on their own and bringing Shadow IT into their network, and with it, risks to company data, productivity, and budgets.
Those blindspots were one challenge, manual processes were another. Every aspect of Productboard’s SaaS management was manual, from maintaining a list of applications in a Google Sheet to onboarding and offboarding each employee. Provisioning new employees with the apps they needed took 1.5 hours per hire. The IT team had to manually go into each app to add new users one-by-one. When your workforce is growing by 100% year-over-year like Productboard’s, it was a major time suck for IT, and inevitably left room for human errors.
On the flip side of the employee experience, offboarding meant IT was going into each application, one-by-one, manually revoking access from ex-employees. However, without full visibility into what applications those employees had been using, it was nearly impossible to fully lock the gate behind them.
“With our growing number of apps and employees, SaaS management had become unbearable. I quickly realized we needed dedicated personnel and specialized tooling for SaaS management,” said Sůva. And thus, he created the SaaS Ops branch of the IT team and implemented Torii to tackle their challenges.
Sůva had been responsible for SaaS management at an earlier job, so he knew exactly what Productboard needed: Reliability, accurate data, the ability to discover apps using multiple sources, expansive direct integrations, and easy-to-implement automated workflows. He led an in-depth review of more than half a dozen SaaS management vendors before selecting Torii.
“Compared to Torii, other SaaS Management Platforms were incomplete, complicated, and not nearly as reliable. Torii has over 130 direct integrations, is easy to use, and delivered value from day one,” said Sůva.
In fact, on their first day using Torii, Productboard connected about 20 direct integrations, instantly accessed a wealth of data, and found hundreds of apps. This ability to discover all applications, including unsanctioned ones, was a major draw for Productboard. Not only does Torii’s discovery solution reveal the Shadow IT blind spots but it also uncovers detailed information on users, usage, costs, redundant applications, and potential risks associated with them—all which data can be easily sliced and diced on multiple levels.
Automated workflows were also mission critical for Productboard so that they could eliminate time-consuming, manual processes and give the IT team more time for high-value, strategic work. “Setting up workflows in Torii was incredibly easy, compared to other vendors. It’s a drag-and-drop, no-code solution, with many options for tailoring. You can create even the most complex ones in a few minutes, and have a whole stack of workflows running in no time,” said Sůva.
Right away, Torii revealed a large collection of Shadow IT apps in Productboard’s ecosystem. “No one expected Shadow IT to be so far reaching. We immediately found over 400 apps, compared to the 110 sanctioned apps that we were aware of,” said Sůva. Of course, this initial Shadow IT discovery wasn’t a one-and-done task, it’s ongoing. According to Suva, his team discovers between five and 10 new Shadow IT apps every month.
“We immediately started performing validation with IT, security, finance and legal to make sure all apps are secured and compliant,” said Sůva. “We also built workflows so that if anyone registers an application through their company account, it automatically emails them a form to document who will own the account, who will use the app, and what the purpose is for using that app.”
With improved visibility, insights, and documentation, Productboard used Torii’s Application Catalog to build a central place for employees to find every company-approved app and information about who owns it, who uses it, and what the purpose of the app is. If they want access, they can request it right there in one click.
“The App Catalog has really improved transparency, optimization, plus employees are more engaged. People started giving us more feedback so we’re able to optimize, uncover more apps, and adjust outdated information in the Application Catalog,” said Sůva. “Our finance department is also excited about the capability for analyzing costs and looking for ways to optimize. They can easily see who the owner is and go to them directly to discuss.”
Torii’s automated workflows are also a huge win for Productboard’s IT team. “I’m really proud of the onboarding process now. We’ve reached a point where we’re able to onboard a new hire and give them complete access to what they’ll need without having to click a single button. This is huge,” said Sůva. “People Ops simply enters the new employee info into our HR system, which integrates with Torii, and the workflows we’ve set up take care of the rest.”
Productboard also helps ensure former employees no longer have access to company applications by using Torii's automated offboarding workflows.
In addition to eliminating human errors, the automation implemented by Productboard are projected to save them approximately 2,000 total hours on SaaS management tasks per year.
Before using Torii, Productboard didn’t have instant visibility into the costs associated with their SaaS applications.
“Our finance team recently requested an analysis on what software we use, how much we pay, and if there is any room for optimization or money savings. With Torii, we had all the usage and financial data readily available, and were able to finish the entire cost analysis in just a few hours,” said Sůva. “Before Torii, I wouldn’t have had a clue where to begin, let alone be able to do an accurate analysis. Now we have a complete SaaS spend picture, workflows to cleanup accounts, and the ability to easily remove unused licenses, which saves us hundreds of dollars a month.”
Torii empowers businesses like Productboard to get more out of their SaaS investments throughout the application lifecycle—and you can take that to the bank.