Building a Business Case for Governance-based Identity Management

As 2011 comes to a close, it’s time once again to plan for future IdM requirements and define budget needs for 2012. Based on today’s business drivers – from security and risk management, to increasing compliance requirements, to the need to streamline delivery of access to users across the business – many organizations are placing a governance-based identity management solution at the top of 2012 wish list.

While the needs and benefits of IdM are real, many companies feel challenged to build a business case and show the potential ROI for this type of project. But don’t let number-crunching intimidate you! In a world of financial uncertainty where there are many competing technology investments, it’s more important than ever to show financial justification for your IdM strategy and direction.

To help you get started, we’ve developed four steps to consider when building your business case for a governance-based IdM strategy, focused on explaining the technology’s potential for delivering demonstrable ROI to the organization:

  1. Internal needs assessment: Begin the evaluation process by first determining what the most pressing IdM issues or opportunities your organization is facing.
  2. Baseline costs: Quantify how many and what types of resources are currently being spent on IdM processes (including manual labor costs).
  3. Set project goals: Formally define your goals of the project and the expected benefits to the organization.
  4. Build the financial model: Estimate how much your project will cost (technology, services, personnel) and then project how the project will save the organization time and money.

One of the keys to building your business case is to provide real-world examples of the tangible and repeatable benefits and cost savings that can result from your IdM project. SailPoint often partners with our customers to provide insight and help throughout this process. Below are some ROI stats that our customers have reported when demonstrating the ROI on their projects:

  • Saved 50 full-time employees annually in controls testing and documentation on a project that spanned 600 applications across 28 countries.
  • Reduced IT Operations costs by $800k annually by automating the de-provisioning of terminated employees.
  • Slashed time spent on compliance by 66% by completing user access reviews in just 4 weeks instead of 3 months.
  • Achieved 30% reduction in excess entitlements after the first user access review cycle.

We recently hosted a webinar that delves further into this topic. The topics and real world use cases covered in the webinar are designed to help you define clear goals for your project and map out a compelling business case. Check it out!