Google Workspace: Managing Access to Google Groups

In this tutorial, you'll learn how to configure Grant Kits to automate access requests to an Google Workspace Group by attaching a Google Workspace Group Membership. This use case models granting new users memberships to a Google Workspace group.

The main terraform resources we'll be using for Google Workspace are:


We will be using the Google Workspace Starter Kit as a base and replace configuration stubs for our use case.

Before you start

  1. Make sure you have:

  2. Make sure you setup:

    1. A Connection to a repo by following Connect a Repo

Step 1: Configure Your Grant Kit

Configure Output

Grant Kits rely on your GitHub account and repository name to output access changes, which we'll set through Terraform local variables. Update the locals block in with your account_name and repo_name
 locals {
  account_name = "" #CHANGEME
  repo_name = "" #CHANGEME

Configure Reviewers

Workflow defines who should approve an access request.

Let's update the reviewers block by adding yourself as the reviewer by switching with the email address you use to sign into Abbey.
 resource "abbey_grant_kit" "..." {
   workflow = {
     steps = [
         reviewers = {
-          one_of = [""] # CHANGEME
+          one_of = [""]

Now you'll need to link GSuite with Abbey.

curl -X POST \
  -H "Authorization: Bearer $ABBEY_API_TOKEN" \
  -H 'Content-Type: application/json' \<user_id>/apps \
  -d '{"type": "googleworkspace", "data": {"email": "<your Google Workspace email>"}}'

Step 3: Configure Google Workspace for Terraform

Configure Google Workspace Customer ID

Navigate to and copy the Customer ID under your profile.

Update the value for google_customer_id in the locals block with that value
locals {
-  google_customer_id = "$replace-me-with-gcp-customer-id"
+  google_customer_id = "C1111111"

Step 4: Configure Google Workspace Permissions

In this step we will

  • Create or use an existing GCP service account

  • Give our GCP service account admin role in Google Workspace

  • Add Repository Secrets so Github Actions to make calls to GCP

Setting up the Service Account

Make sure that the Admin SDK API and is enabled for your project. You can check by navigating to

If you don't already have a service account, create one via with owner role. Keep track of the service account email address, it should something like google-workspace-groups-demo@<project-id>

Once you have a service account, create a new Key through the console

Save the JSON file, we'll be using the contents later with Github Actions.

Linking the Service Account to Google Workspace

Navigate to the Google Workspace Admin Portal and go to Account -> Admin Roles.

Hover on the Groups Admin row and click on Assign Admin. It'll open up to a new page:

Now, click on Assign service accounts and enter in the service account email address from the earlier step. Confirm assigning the role and now your service account has access to the Google Workspace groups APIs 🎉

Next, add the following repository secrets so Github Actions can access these credentials.

  1. GOOGLE_CREDENTIALS - copy paste the contents from the credentials key JSON as the value.

  2. ABBEY_TOKEN - API token taken from Settings > API Tokens

You can do this via Github repo page -> Settings -> Secrets and Variables -> Actions -> New Repository Secret and create with the above names.

What should it look like?

Step 5: Deploy Your Starter Kit

To deploy your Starter Kit, follow instructions from Deploy Your Grant Kit.

Step 6: Automate Access Management

🎉 Congratulations! Abbey is now managing permissions to your Resource for you. 🎉

You can now start requesting and approving access by following the Request Access and Approve or Deny Access Requests guides.

Abbey strives to help you automate and secure access management without being intrusive.

To that end, this Pull Request contains native Terraform HCL code using normal open source Terraform Provider libraries. It represents the permissions change. In this case, it's just a simple creation of a new Terraform Resource.

After approving the request, you should be able to see that the user has been added to the google group.

  1. Select the group you are adding a member to

  2. View members

Finally, this starter kit comes with a time-based policy by default, the user will automatically be removed after 1 hour.

Next Steps

To learn more about what Privacy Policy you can configure, try one of our Step-by-Step Tutorials.

For more information on how Abbey works, visit the Key Concepts or Grant Kits page.

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