Today we announced some exciting market momentum – in a July report, Forrester Research, Inc. named Okta a cloud identity and access management (IAM) leader. The report – “The Forrester Wave: Enterprise Cloud Identity and Access Management, Q3 2012” – is a close examination of the top most significant cloud IAM providers, measuring each against a set of 15 criteria to help weigh strengths and weaknesses. You can actually download a free version of the report from our site, here.

The report is timely, highlighting the fact that cloud identity and access management is growing – fast. Set to grow 500 percent by 2015, cloud IAM is an increasingly critical solution for enterprises. And for good reason. With external forces (mobile, cloud app adoption, increasing online collaboration with partners and customers) rapidly driving business interaction beyond the firewall, leading cloud IAM providers offer a solution that’s “…highly tailored to meet the requirements of cloud service access control and offers among the best capabilities for an integrated offering.”

Enterprises need an IAM solution that helps them better secure and manage access to these new cloud services from a widespread population of mobile devices. The most valuable cloud IAM vendors are “highly tailored” – providing secure, on-demand services that can be instantly scaled and feature deep integrations with mission-critical business applications.

As a market leader, Okta is one of the few (less than one percent) SaaS companies to complete the rigorous SOC 2 Type II audit against all five associated trust principles. With 99.99% availability over the past twelve months, Okta has also proven the worth of its zero downtime architecture – remaining live when major disruptions (like the recent AWS outages) caused other cloud-based companies to go down. Another key differentiator is the Okta Application Network, which includes more than 1,500 pre-integrated applications.

In the Wave report, Forrester also emphasizes the evolving role of cloud IAM providers as strategic business partners. More and more, IAM vendors are beginning to offer a variety of different business opportunities and functionality. This kind of partnership has always been a central part of Okta’s vision – working with enterprise customers and partners to build unique offerings like external customer portals. The report states, “We see the market moving toward turning IAM into an explicit business enabler rather than a mere cost center.”

We do too.