Enterprises With Mature Identity Programs Have Much to be Grateful For

Because of its focus on gratitude, Thanksgiving is one of my favorite holidays. Regardless of our current situation or struggles, we always have something for which to be grateful. While much of the working world in the US will be enjoying a long weekend, those who work at organizations with mature identity programs have much to be grateful for over this holiday and throughout the rest of the year.

What do organizations with mature identity programs have to be grateful? Plenty. Let’s have a look.

An improved user experience

When access management is done right, using IT systems is more pleasurable for everyone. Their end users don’t have to remember passwords for dozens, if not more, different systems. And the right access management program enables users to gain speedy access to their systems. In most cases that’s a password, while higher value assets may require multifactor authentication.

This is why organizations with good access management programs in place are grateful for the improved user experience they provide.

Increased business agility

As we wrote in A Tale of Identity’s Dual Role in the Enterprise, identity management is one of the only security technologies that both helps to keep enterprises secure and improves business outcomes. Most notably, how rapidly businesses can innovate. This aspect of identity management is as important now as ever, as more enterprises embrace digital transformation to digitize business processes for efficiency and to drive new digital products and services to customers, enter new markets, and increase margins—and, hopefully, innovate.

Organizations that have mature identity-management programs in place are grateful for their increased business agility.

Improved visibility throughout the enterprise

Effective identity management enables teams to better see what is happening throughout their organizations. Efficient identity and access monitoring provides continuous visibility into which users have access to what resources and data within the enterprise. This centralized repository enables monitoring and better enforcement of access rights. And while many enterprises think this applies to applications and networked resources, it can also mean the same for unstructured data and provide transparency into who can view, access, and manage data that isn’t stored and structured within on-premise applications.

Organizations that have mature identity management programs in place are grateful for their increased visibility into what is occurring throughout their organization.

Increased productivity

When employees and contractors are manually authenticated to endpoints there is no doubt about it: productivity suffers. Over the years, I’ve interviewed countless organizations where it takes several weeks — that’s weeks — before employees are properly on-boarded and able to access all of the assets they need to be productive, including applications and networked resources. Business just doesn’t move at that pace anymore. And this just isn’t a concern when it comes to onboarding new employers, partners, or suppliers. The longer it takes to provide access changes for those already on-boarded but changing roles – perhaps a promotion or horizontal job change – is another hit to organizational productivity.

Enterprises with mature identity programs have automated provisioning and de-provisioning capabilities in place so that employees, partners, contractors, and others have the access they need, as soon as they need it.

Those with mature identity programs are grateful that they help their organizations to be more productive.

They’re more secure

Organizations with mature identity management programs increase their security posture in a number of ways. Only through identity management can users be authenticated properly (establishing that they are who they say they are), and then authorized to the appropriate levels of access to the appropriate applications and resources.

Identity management keeps data confidential through proper authentication and authorization, and also better ensures that data and resources can only be altered by those who are authorized.

Those with mature identity management programs are grateful that this helps their organizations be more productive.