Why Building Customer Identity Is More Difficult Than You Think

Building a customer identity solution in-house is an option that many organisations will likely consider, but is it the right choice? In this post, we explore how outsourcing your CIAM build can improve both the customer experience and operational performance of your business.

The right customer identity and access management (CIAM) solution is a valuable investment for any modern business. As well as improving the customer experience and accelerating digital transformation, CIAM helps win customer trust by adding a secure front door to every user account.

Yet, while building a CIAM solution in-house is an option that many organisations will likely consider, doing so is far from simple. In this post, we explore the many challenges your organisation could face during a CIAM build and provide alternative solutions to ensure you get the biggest return on your investment. 

What are the challenges of building CIAM in house?

  1. CIAM is a complex product 

While CIAM solutions like Okta may seem simple from the end user’s perspective, building these platforms from the ground up can be incredibly challenging. You’ll need to hire a team of highly skilled developers with years of experience working in identity if you want your platform to succeed, and the problems don’t end there.

  1. Long-term costs are huge

Maintaining CIAM in-house incurs huge costs and requires a dedicated team of highly skilled engineers and developers to continue monitoring and updating your systems whenever necessary. This huge drain on resources will also prevent developers and IT teams from improving customer experience in other areas of your business.

  1. Cybercrime is rapidly evolving

Surging ransomware and other cyberthreats often prey on weak passwords when targeting their victims. While a strong CIAM solution can play a crucial role in protecting your organisation from credential theft, a poorly maintained or improperly built platform can create many vulnerabilities for bad actors to attack. 

  1. Increased risk of non-compliance

Increasingly complex compliance regulations are difficult to keep on top of – and this is especially true if your DIY CIAM solution lacks the agility and flexibility to keep up. As well as incurring severe fines, failing to maintain compliance through poorly managed CIAM can cause irreparable damage to your reputation as a company that customers can trust.

  1. CIAM can be difficult to scale 

CIAM solutions built in-house don’t often integrate well with other tools and applications in your tech stack. As well as damaging your ROI, this lack of integration makes it incredibly difficult to scale your CIAM platform quickly.

What are the benefits of outsourcing to a CIAM provider?

  1. Simplifies the CIAM build

A well-established CIAM solution provider will offer a dedicated team of professionals to build, manage and maintain the platform on your behalf. They’ll analyse your business needs to ensure all your requirements are met, and they’ll use their years of experience to quickly solve your unique customer identity pains.

  1. Eliminates unnecessary costs 

As well as removing the need to hire new specialist identity developers, outsourcing to a dedicated CIAM provider will cut down your maintenance costs by a significant measure. You’ll also have more IT resources available to focus on improving your product to create better experiences for your customers.

  1. Quickly mitigates security threats

With the cybersecurity landscape growing it pace, now is not the time for trial and error. You need an established, trustworthy CIAM solution that can quickly deploy strong, reliable Multi-factor Authentication (MFA) and Single Sign-on (SSO) across all your IT systems with minimal effort.

  1. Maintains full regulatory compliance

While addressing identity compliance challenges is becoming more difficult by the day, the right CIAM solution provider will gladly shoulder this burden and protect both your reputation and finances from embarrassing and costly noncompliance fines.   

  1. Reliable and fully scalable

One of the biggest advantages of choosing a CIAM solutions provider like Okta is that we offer more than 7,500 pre-built integrations right out the box. This means you can quickly deploy our CIAM solution across all your IT systems at scale, both on-premises and in the cloud.

Want to know more? 

If you’re still uncertain about any of the above, or if you’d like to know more about the challenges of building CIAM in-house, download Okta’s CIAM: Build vs Buy whitepaper now or reach out to one of our customer identity experts for a quick chat.