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Patronum’s Updates for 2023: The Year In Review 🎉

By Patronum

January 04, 2024

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2023 was a huge year for Patronum, rolling out an array of updates designed to enhance user interaction, streamline processes, and bolster security – all aimed at helping you better manage your Google Workspace environment. As the best Google Workspace manager in the industry, our commitment to innovation ensures that every feature we introduce sets a new standard for excellence. This year, we’ve focused on making Patronum not just feature-rich but also the most intuitive Google Workspace manager available, marking a significant leap forward in how businesses can leverage Google Workspace to its full potential. So let’s take a look at just some of the major highlights and how we keep on improving and service.

Highlights of 2023

Dashboard Enhancements

No Google Workspace management suite would be complete without a dashboard full of charts and useful information. If you like a good dashboard you will not be disappointed with the information we’ve crammed into Patronum. The Patronum dashboard has been meticulously designed to offer a comprehensive overview of your Google Workspace environment. With detailed insights into file-sharing activities and data exchanges with external organizations, managing your workspace has never been more intuitive or effective.

Within the dashboard, you’ll find out who your top file sharers are, and which files are shared. More importantly, you’ll be able to see which external organisations you are sharing most of your data with.

Advanced Alerting with Patronum Alerts

Patronum is a powerful and comprehensive solution designed and developed by some of the world’s most experienced Google Workspace administrators. With a focus on streamlining management tasks for Google Workspace businesses globally, Patronum has been crafted to cater to the unique needs of Google Workspace administrators.

One of the key features of Patronum is its cutting-edge alerting system, Patronum Alerts. This intuitive and user-friendly dashboard provides administrators with a centralized view of critical information, helping them stay on top of important matters. This robust feature ensures that your workspace remains secure and efficient, demonstrating our unwavering commitment to your organization’s success.

With Patronum Alerts, administrators can easily identify users who haven’t logged in for a specified period, such as the past 30 days. This information is essential for maintaining user account security and identifying potential risks. Additionally, the dashboard offers insights into delegate access, displaying a comprehensive list of users with delegate privileges, and allowing administrators to maintain control and visibility over permissions within the organization.

However, Patronum’s capabilities extend far beyond user activity monitoring. It automatically compiles and readily presents a wide range of reports to Google Workspace administrators. These reports cover various aspects of the Google Workspace environment, providing administrators with valuable insights to enhance understanding, security, and efficiency.

Patronum empowers Google Workspace administrators with the tools and insights they need to effectively manage and secure their environments. Its comprehensive alerting system, Patronum Alerts, combined with a wide range of insightful reports, enables administrators to stay informed, make data-driven decisions, and maintain the integrity and security of their Google Workspace infrastructure.

  • User(s) are suspended.
  • User(s) have not logged in over the last 30 days.
  • User(s) with delegate access granted.
  • User(s) with IMAP enabled
  • User(s) with external forwarding addresses
  • User(s) with access to external Shared Drives
  • User(s) do not have a manager.
  • User(s) have at least 10% of their storage quota remaining.
  • User(s) are scheduled to be offboarded

In order to help IT administrators and marketing departments implement email signatures with rich data from the Google Workspace Directory, Patronum Alerts will also provide insights to the following:-

  • User(s) do not have a signature managed by Patronum.
  • User(s) without phone numbers.
  • User(s) without mobile phone numbers.
  • User(s) without job titles.
  • User(s) without departments.

Live Tasks

Many of the tasks Patronum performs often take a lot of background processing and calculations. These tasks are run within our Google Cloud environment so that Patronum Administrators can get on with other work while Patronum does all the heavy lifting. These tasks include the unsharing of Google Drive files, changing file permissions, moving files, and even importing and updating user details.

The new Live Task feature allows you to see exactly what is happening within Patronum, in real-time, providing valuable insights and assistance.

Hide Google Groups

Many Google Workspace Administrators create Google Groups for a variety of reasons, however, there are often times when the Google Workspace Administrator needs to hide these Google Groups so that they do not appear in the Google Global Address list and auto-complete. Unfortunately, the Google Admin Console does not allow the administrator to perform this function. Good job, they have Patronum to hand. 

Within Patronum simply find the Google Group you want to hide and select the Hide option. Patronum can also dynamically create Google Groups and mark them as hidden.

Archive User

Are hidden ex-employee data costs draining your Google Workspace budget? Patronum’s smarter offboarding process can help you reclaim hidden savings.

Businesses flock to Google Workspace for its seamless setup, scalability, and cost-efficiency promise. But maximizing those benefits requires attentive IT management, especially concerning departed employees and unused licenses.

Google Workspace’s revamped storage limits and pricing structure can push some companies towards pricier enterprise or archive user licenses. This, coupled with lingering ex-employee data, can easily create a hidden cost vortex.

Implement Patronum’s smart offboarding solution and watch those hidden costs vanish. With our introduction and support of Archive User licenses, you can decide exactly which types of licenses you need. By automating data removal and license reclamation, Patronum ensures you only pay for what you use.

Google Drive Feature Updates

One of the main areas of development for Patronum in 2023, and beyond, is Google Drive. We added so many amazing features from File Copy, File Move, Data Transfer and our File Compliance section that we decided we needed a completely separate article to share these with you. So check out our Google Drive features updates of 2023.

Calendar Deprovisioning

I am sure, by now you realise that the team behind Patronum are Google Workspace veterans, with years of real-world experience in managing Google Workspace, and that’s why when it comes to offboarding and Google Workspace we know where the nasty and annoying “features” are. One such example is hidden within the humble Google Calendar. Did you know that when an account is suspended, archived or even deleted they are still invitees to internal appointments? This causes confusion, email bounceback, and other irritations. That is until now, with Patronum Calendar Deprovisioning we’ve gone to the effort of allowing you to configure the removal of departing employees from all internal events.

Simply create an offboarding policy, and select “Remove user as attendee“. When a user is then offboarded Patronum will check all appointments the departing employee has been invited to and simply remove them from the invite list. No more confusion, or bouncing emails. Patronum also removes the departing employee from all shared calendars.

While on the subject of shared calendars, Patronum also allows you to transfer any shared or secondary calendars to others within the organisation as part of an offboarding process. This makes sure that any event-specific calendars owned by the departing employee are not lost.

Remove employee from Google Contacts while offboarding

Another rather annoying feature, buried within Google Contacts, is the ghosts of past employees. Did you know that Google often automatically stores contact information from the Google Directory in users’ Google Contacts, as there is no central control over your user’s Google Contacts, ex-employees contact information can still be presented to users within autocomplete, and the Google Address book. This bugged the team at Patronum so much that they created a process of removing these past employees from everyone’s Google Contacts during offboarding.

Within an offboarding policy, select the option to “Remove ex-employee from other users my contacts” and Patronum will scour all your user’s Google Contacts and remove the contact details of the leaver.

Automatically create a Google Group for offboarding users.

When someone leaves an organisation it’s important that any new emails or replies are delivered. These emails could be critical to the organisation, maybe a contract confirmation or update from a client. There is nothing worse than receiving an automated email or out-of-office stating that your main point of contact has left an organisation.

There are many ways in which Patronum can help address this challenge. Within an offboarding policy, it’s possible to rename the leaver’s email account, take their current email address and assign it as an email alias to someone else, maybe their manager. It is also possible to assign that alias to an existing Google Group. Recently we expanded this functionality so that administrators can dynamically and automatically create a custom hidden Google Group with the same email address as that of the leaver.

Delete Mobile from Google Directory as part of offboarding

When someone leaves an organisation they may take their mobile device with them. However, making sure that the device has been safely removed from the Google Directory is important. Within a Patronum policy, it is now possible to remove all devices belonging to the leaver from the Google Directory.

It is also possible to wipe the device, remove the leaver’s account from the device, as well as block the device.

Remove Recovery Telephone number when offboarding

Many organisations don’t realise that it’s important to clear the leavers recovery email and telephone details as part of the offboarding process. First, it prevents the user regaining access via the forgotten password option in Google Workspace. It also prevents the leaver from receiving alerts when the account is accessed or the password has been changed. Within Patronum it is possible to configure a policy to automatically remove the email and telephone recovery details as part of an offboarding strategy.

Show a user via a policy

Some organisations automatically hide users from the Google Directory and only enable them within the Google Address book when they start. The Show user option, available from within the Security section of a policy, gives administrators the ability to create hidden accounts within an organisations, and automatically add a user to the Global Google Address book when their account is activated. This feature is often coupled with the Start Date attribute within a policy.

Show which OU a user is located

A useful addition to Patronum is the displaying of the OU location of a user. This can help when troubleshooting policies etc.

This information is only available to administrators of Patronum.

Search Google Groups via email and email alias address

When trying to determine where specific email are going within Google Workspace, it’s often useful to be able to search for users and groups via email alias addresses. Unfortunately, the Google Admin Console does not give you that flexibility, good job you’ve got Patronum eh?

With Patronum, you can search the Google Group section for groups based on email addresses and email alias addresses.

New Security Section

We are always improving the layout and functionality of Patronum. Within the new Security section under SETTINGS you will have access to Email and Telephone Recovery details for the user. Issue 2-step verification codes and app-specific passwords. You will also be able to see and reset any 3rd party app access, as well as reset a user’s login session which will log them out of all devices.

New Mobile Management Section

Another new section within the SETTINGS environment is our new Mobile management UI. See all the devices owned by each user.

New User Template

Created after conversations with some of our enterprise clients, our new user template allows organisations to define and make mandatory attributes when creating a new user.

Pre-configure email address standards such as first name last name, or first initial last name etc. Make attributes such as Job Title, Type of Employee, Department and Manager mandatory when creating new users. Via an email template, you can also automatically send welcome emails to an employee’s personal and work accounts during the account creation process.

Administrators can also use email templates when resetting a user’s email password via a policy. This allows a custom account reset email to be sent directly to the user, their manager or a user’s personal recovery account.

Search and filter based on manager depth

Another really useful addition to Patronum is being able to search a hierarchy based on a specific manager. This can be useful if you want to automatically populate a Google Group with everybody who indirectly reports to a specific manager within the organisation.

By default, the depth is equal to 1. This means that only direct reports to the “Manager” are returned. However, if a depth of 2 is entered, then Patronum will return 2 levels below the Manager, meaning that the manager’s direct reports and the direct reports of those individuals are returned.

If the number is -1 then Patronum will return ALL direct reports within the entire organisation hierarchy. This is useful when trying to create mailing lists for Directorates etc.

Add Google Voice number to email signature

With more and more of our customers implementing Google Voice, we wanted to make sure that Patronum’s email signature solution could support the dynamic inclusive of Google Voice telephone numbers directly into an employee’s email signature. Simply use the variable {{google_voice}} to add Google Voice to your email signature template within a policy.

Pronouns in Patronum

More and more of our corporate friends are including preferred pronouns within business email signatures, as well as X, Facebook and LinkedIn profiles.

For many organisations wanting to build an inclusive working environment, adding gender pronouns to a company email signature is a great first step. It brings awareness to something that many people might not have thought about before. By opening up the discussions around gender pronouns it provides further education as to why it is important that people’s identity is respected.

Unfortunately, Google’s implementation of gender pronouns within Google Workspace is inconsistent, with options available in multiple locations. In January 2023 Google allowed Google Workspace users to set and share personal pronouns across Google Workspace products. Unfortunately, Google forgot to include an API to access this information.

In addition to the inaccessible personal pronouns as defined above, Google also provides an attribute within the Google Directory “gender.addressMeAs” which can be used to store user’s pronouns. Unfortunately, this is not the same attribute that is available above via However this attribute is accessible via the standard Google API’s and as such is available within Patronum so that you can populate email signatures etc.

Import and Export DOMAIN SHARED CONTACT information

Within the Shared Contact section of Patronum, we now support all fields and attributes available. This allows administrators to create rich internal address books available across all the Google Workspace applications.

With the Patronum advanced search, we provide the ability to search across all Google Workspace Directory attributes and statuses. Need to locate people within a specific department, or with a skill? Simply use the advanced option and browse the attributes you’re interested in.

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