Highlights from Gartner IAM Summit 2019 #GartnerIAM

December 16, 2019
gartner iam summit 2019

gartner iam summit 2019

Last week, the Idenhaus team joined almost 2,000 Identity and Access Management experts, vendors, and practitioners at the annual Gartner IAM Summit in Las Vegas. This is our third year attending the event and, as always, we found immense value in the educational tracks and networking opportunities. This year’s conference theme was “Keys to IAM Success: Multifactor Authentication, Privileged Access, and Beyond”. Many of the sessions focused on how an effective IAM program can help your business thrive in an era of unprecedented change.

The Gartner IAM Summit 2019 kicked off with a moving keynote from Dr. Steve Robbins, “What is Culture?” Through a combination of humor, interactive exercises, and his own life story, Dr. Robbins brought insightful perspectives on issues of leadership, inclusion & innovation, and the power of caring.

As organizations ask their employees to innovate and bring creative ideas to work, they need to provide the proper environment to foster that type of thinking. The challenge is for organizations and individuals to be more intentional in building their cultures and encourage open-mindedness and inclusion. The main takeaway was that an inclusive workplace frees people’s cognitive resources and energy to put into the skills they have. Otherwise, employees are using up a lot of that energy dealing with being outsiders, and they have less energy to do the work they already know how to do.

Multi-tasking was another topic that Dr. Robbins addressed head-on. In this thought-provoking session, we were provided insight into how human processing is actually single-threaded and that the human brain is able to switch back and forth between tasks. As such, we do not really multitask. He demonstrated this inefficiency through an example using two audience members. One was the timer, and the other was given a set of tasks to perform. First, the attendee was asked to recite the alphabet for time. Then she was asked to count from 1-26 for time. Both tasks taken together were completed in less than 10 seconds. The final task was for her to say the alphabet and count, e.g. a1, b2, c3, d4, etc. The results were astounding – it took nearly 10X longer to multitask. The takeaway: allow resources to focus on doing the right things and avoid distractions or placing multiple duties with the same deadlines.

Guidance for Successful IGA Deployments #GartnerIAM

On Tuesday afternoon, we attended Guidance for Successful IGA Deployments. The session started off with poking fun at the promises offered by IGA vendor software versus what you really get. 

There’s no manual that can tell your organization how to implement and put together your IGA program. But there are guidelines to follow to help your program be more successful. Here are seven ways to structure IGA deployments. 

7 Ways to Structure IGA Deployments to be More Successful

  1. Define IGA Business Case
  2. Establish IGA deployment scope
  3. Lifecycle management of privileged accounts 
  4. Perform a bakeoff of at least 2 IGA vendors and SI partners
  5. Conduct account cleanup and process gap analysis
    • Tools to discover orphaned, dormant, unused accounts
    • Seek ways to improve current processes
  6. Adopt an agile deployment process
  7. Define and measure IGA metrics - what success is, what are expectations

gartner iam summit 2019


Here are a few common pitfalls to watch out for during IGA implementations. 

  • Merely replacing old tools with new tools. Instead, use the replacement as an opportunity to evolve to a more agile architecture and to implement more levels of automation
  • Underestimating the resources that are required outside of the IAM team
    • Engagement of business-level owners and stakeholders
    • Technical resources
    • Change management processes
  • Thinking that IGA is a one-time project - it’s not! 

While the sessions at the Gartner IAM Summit are always informative, our favorite part of Garner Identity and Access Management Summit is the people! We get the most value out of the networking and one-on-one meeting time with other IAM experts, vendors, and practitioners. Stay tuned for our next article on #GartnerIAM 2019.


Check out our previous articles on the Gartner IAM Summit:

#GartnerIAM 2018

#GartnerIAM 2017


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