Legacy IAM + cloud = #fail

May 11th, 2015   /     /   Smarter Identity

According to CA Technologies, the typical CA SiteMinder customer has more than 5,000 employees and more than $250M in revenues. Customers of this size have large IT budgets that allow them to undertake complex projects with lots of customization and configuration involved. Similar tools from Oracle, IBM, RSA, Microsoft and Ping Identity were built for an era where complexity was expected, accepted and even appreciated because every company felt that their requirements were unique to them.

Fast forward to today where enterprises flock to the cloud because of the speed with which it allows them to operate. The very premise of shadow IT is that employees seek ways to do their jobs faster and better. Sign up, swipe the credit card and make the tool do the work for you.

Complex on-premise IAM solutions are incompatible with the ease-of-use of the modern cloud applications that organizations use today. You might be able to justify days or weeks of integration work for an application used by every employee, but what about the long tail of hundreds of apps used throughout the organization?

The chart above shows a typical top 20 list of apps for an organization. A few apps are being used by every employee, but as you move into the long tail of apps, most of them just have a few users. The further you get into the long tail of apps, the harder it becomes to justify spending thousands or tens of thousands of IT dollars to integrate the app with the IAM solution. As a result, the on-premise IAM solution ends up only covering a subset of the apps in the organization, which leads to high help desk costs, low productivity, weak regulatory compliance and significant security exposure.

Where on-premise is synonymous with complexity, proprietary, bespoke and slow, the cloud has become synonymous with simplicity, scalability, agility, standards-based, collaborative and fast. Pick your favorite cloud app and you will see that it’s typically pre-integrated with a bunch of other apps you also use.

On-premise IAM and cloud apps are like oil and water. They don’t mix. Cloud-based IAM solutions such as OneLogin are pre-integrated with thousands of applications that you can enable in minutes rather than days or hours. As a result, you can easily apply identity management to all of your organization’s apps, resulting in increased productivity, reduced help desk costs, higher regulatory compliance and less security exposure.

Built for the cloud, in the cloud – is the winning recipe.

About the Author

Thomas Pedersen, founder and CEO of Onelogin, has more than 15 years of experience in building and selling carrier-grade billing systems for phone companies, initially at Cisco-backed Digiquant in Denmark and later at Intec Telecom Systems in the US. After having helped Zendesk grow to 5,000 customers as VP Business Development, he is now laser-focused on making OneLogin the most widely deployed identity management solution in the cloud.

View all posts by Thomas Pedersen