According to Statista, the market for identity and access management is expected to grow to 7.1 billion dollars by the year 2018. This is up from 4.5 billion dollars in 2012; and much of this growth can be attributed to the fact that so many organizations are looking to upgrade their identity management software to better meet the security and workflow needs their company faces.
Unfortunately, there is no odometer on your current identity management solution that tells you it is time for an upgrade. Instead, knowing when you need to look at making a change can be determined by these four key factors.
Your organization increasingly relies on contractors
Estimates show that one in three US workers are now freelancing for work, and that is because there are businesses who need their skills. If your business relies on contractors, temporary workers, or freelancers, then you are aware of the nightmare that creating temporary access can create for your IT staff. Not only is it time consuming to manually set up accounts in active directory and the applications that temporary employees will need to use, but there is always the risk that someone may forget to remove these accounts, leaving them with access long after their employment ends. Modern identity management solutions address this problem. They make it easy to set up time-based access that you can grant for as long as needed. When the time limit is up, the accounts are disabled and can be renewed if necessary.
The right solution also can provide you with the ability to support external users without having to enter them into your local directory if you choose not to grant them an account in your system of record.
You allow mobile devices in the workplace
Most companies have some sort of bring your own device (BYOD) policy in place to govern what resources employees’ personal mobile devices can access on your network. While endpoint security solutions help control this, they don’t have the capability to govern access controls by ensuring devices, both on-premise and in the cloud, properly identify the user behind the device before connecting to network resources the way identity management solutions do. If your identity management predates the rise of personal mobile devices, then it may be time to look for an upgrade to ensure that sensitive information cannot be accessed by a stolen or lost device.
Support costs are too high
Many organizations find that their support staff spends an inordinate amount of time resetting user passwords and unlocking accounts. One solution to this problem is to grant end-users the ability to manage their own accounts and reset forgotten passwords. Unfortunately, not all identity management solutions have this feature available. Moving to a solution that gives your support team the ability to hand this off to your users can help save time and money, freeing support up to address real issues, while still maintaining organizational policies.
Moving to a modern identity management solution also helps rid your organization of legacy systems that rely on a large hardware footprint that themselves are costly to maintain and run. Add to this the costs of bringing in consultants or creating custom code when you need to modify or enhance the way your team uses the existing solution and you can see how upgrading to a newer solution may be less expensive in the long run.
You rely on cloud based services
Companies have seen tremendous savings by turning to Software as a Service, Infrastructure as a Service, and other cloud based technologies. However, each time a new service is added to your end-users’ toolbox, a new password is required. If this is the case in your organization, you will find that an identity management tool that supports single sign-on (SSO) for on premise, hosted, and cloud applications will help your end-users work more efficiently and more securely.
Like most technologies, identity and access management solutions evolve to meet the needs of your business and the end-user. If you find that the solution you have in place is lacking in the tools that support today’s infrastructure, applications, and user base then it is time for you to make a change.