Gartner Research

How to Prevent the Most Common IAM Failures

Published: 08 October 2014

ID: G00263049

Analyst(s): Felix Gaehtgens , Steve Krapes, Brian Iverson


An alarming number of IAM initiatives stumble, run into trouble and fail to deliver business value, yet many of these problems are avoidable. IAM leaders must recognize and avoid these common pitfalls.

Table Of Contents
  • Key Challenges



  • Common Failure: IT Drives a Large, Major IAM Project Without Stakeholder Coordination or Buy-In
    • Recommendation: Build a Common Vision for IAM With Stakeholders
  • Common Failure: A Custom-Built IAM System That Cannot Scale or Integrate With New IAM Technology Advancements or IAM System Upgrades
    • Recommendation: Adapt to New Styles of IAM Technology and Retool Processes to Respond to Changes
  • Common Failure: An IAM Project That Is Overly Ambitious in Scope, Scale and Effort
    • Recommendation: Demonstrate Incremental Business Value in the IAM Program Every Three to Six Months by Not Taking on Too Much Too Early
  • Common Failure: Treating IAM Technology as a Workflow System That Takes Its Lead From Human Resources
    • Recommendation: Plan for Multiple Sources of Truth for Identity Data Beyond HR Systems
  • Common Failure: A Narrow Focus on Automated IAM Provisioning
    • Recommendation: Create an Administrative Governance Process for Managing Identities Across the Entire Organization
  • Common Failure: Reusing Bad Processes in New Systems
    • Recommendation: Verify and Optimize the Key Business Processes That Impact IAM, and Eliminate Bad Processes
  • Common Failure: A Narrow Focus on the "Leaders" in Gartner's Magic Quadrant
    • Recommendation: Closely Evaluate All Vendors in a Magic Quadrant When Developing a Vendor Solution Shortlist
  • Common Failure: Implementing Free Solutions as Part of Larger Licensing Deals
    • Recommendation: Implement Vendor Selection Exercises That Look Closely at All Options, and Do Not Overvalue Licensing Costs

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