Monday, November 10, 2008

Gartner's IAM Summit 2008 - Day 1

Here I am at the gorgeous Gaylord Palms Resort and Convention Center in sunny Orlando, FL attending Gartner's IAM Summit 2008. This is Gartner's third summit and looks to be well attended from what I saw at the keynotes this morning. As usual, I am working my Canon camera and if you click on the pictures below you can see what and who I've been capturing.

I'm hoping for an exciting session like the one Gartner's Neil MacDonald gave last year titled: "Everything You Know About Identity Management Is Wrong". That was awesome.

Earl Perkins followed Ray Wagner's welcoming comments to the attendees. Earl spent a lot of his time talking about how IAM is maturing and needs to continue to grow up. His session was titled "IAM: Enabling Governance and Risk Management in an Age of Business Challenges". I agree that IAM is growing up but, as Earl stated, it's still a teenager and there's a lot more maturity needed before we really see IAM enabling the business and not just enabling IT. In Earl's words: IAM as a transformational technology. I couldn't agree more. I think we've just barely scratched the surface of IAM as a truly transformational technology. Yes, we've definitely made lots of progress with IAM as an IT enabler but not as a business or transformational technology.

I think this is one of the biggest challenges facing software vendors today. Building that bridge between IT enabling software to business enabling technology. This is a big obstacle to overcome because most of the people who create software come from a computing or IT operational background rather than a business operational background. Sure, many of us in computing have taken business courses but do we actually understand risk management, compliance and audit?

We need - as vendors - to help our customers move from automating infrastructure procedures to enabling business processes. We've started down that path with things like self-service password management, workflow automation, role management and mining (etc.), but we do have a long way to go still.

Earl loves to use quotes in his slides to mix things up. Here's a couple of the most notable ones from his presentation today:

  • We can dispense with the pleasantries, Commander. I am here to get you back on schedule. - Darth Vader.
  • Sooner or later all thinking and planning has to degenerate into work. - Peter Drucker
I'll post more as the conference evolves!

p.s. Mark your calendars now: Gartner's IAM Summit 2009 will be Nov 9-11 in San Diego, CA

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