5 Critical Business Identity Governance Use Cases

5 Critical Business Identity Governance Use Cases

What are 5 critical business identity governance use cases your IT security team should know? Why does it matter? 

Identity Governance and Administration (IGA) represents a major component of enterprise-level cybersecurity and identity management. Often, it ends up seriously neglected by many decision-makers; usually, this stems from confusion over what it can offer organizational cybersecurity and what use cases it supports. 

Therefore, we thought we would clear the air surrounding identity governance by exploring the five critical business identity governance use cases. 

What Does Identity Governance Actually Do? 

Identity governance and administration allows enterprises to leverage role-based access for role management; in other words, it allows enterprises to monitor the permissions users possess and revoke unnecessary ones if discovered. Additionally, it can facilitate and optimize certification and compliance as IGA solutions often provide out-of-the-box reporting capabilities. Altogether, IGA solutions can support life cycle management, risk management, and enforce the principle of least privilege.    

5 Critical Business Identity Governance Use Cases

Identity Analytics

As a use case, identity analytics itself contains several distinct use cases. These include monitoring, privileged account discovery and reporting. However, at the same time, identity analytics matters to enterprises of all sizes and identity management interests. Identity analytics leverages machine learning to define, review, and verify accounts and entitlements for access; it can use identity data science to improve identity management and privileged access management deployments and maintenance. 

For example, identity analytics can benefit large enterprises due to their proportionally large volume of accounts and general identity data. Meanwhile, a midsize business can use identity analytics to strengthen the cleanup of unnecessary or dormant entitlements. Additionally, identity analytics can mitigate risk in IT environments.

Global or Large Enterprises

The larger your enterprise scales, the more strain and demands you put on your cybersecurity solution. As a result, large enterprises poses one of the more challenging identity governance use cases. After all, large enterprises require elaborate processes for managing large numbers of users and entitlements. Also, global businesses face stricter compliance requirements than smaller organizations. 

Therefore, IGA for large enterprises needs to emphasize scalability and performance. Additionally, large enterprises need to emphasize reporting, policy, and role management to handle the deluge of accounts. Other key capabilities for large enterprises handling huge account repositories include entitlement controls, auditing, and identity life cycle.

Due to the strict regulatory regimes that make compliance difficult, large enterprises also need IGA solutions with strong out-of-the-box reporting.  

Midsize Enterprises

Midsize enterprises use simpler IT environments and thus require a balance between provisioning and governance. Of course, ease of deployment matters considerably more than for large enterprises. After all, smaller businesses rarely have the cybersecurity staff needed to handle more complex deployments. Instead, midsize enterprises benefit from fast deployments and clear functionality. 

However, there are some overlaps between midsize enterprise and large enterprise identity governance use cases. Both need to emphasize access requests and identity life cycle management. Where they differ is that midsize enterprises have a special need for these capabilities, as requests constitute a higher proportion of entitlements. 


Instead of size, some critical identity governance use cases focus on needs rather than sizes. For example, governance-focused businesses primarily seek capabilities for managing and enforcing access policies and maintaining control over user permissions. 

For these businesses, the key capabilities include access certification and auditing—both of which facilitate regulatory compliance. Also, these capabilities provide the means to detect and remediate out-of-compliance discoveries.


Finally, we conclude our list with automation-focused businesses. These businesses focus on capabilities like provisioning achieved through end-to-end automation. In these cases, automation’s success is based on the ability to integrate with external account repositories. Through IGA automation, businesses can automate identity life cycle management and role management. This takes the burden of determining unnecessary privileges off the shoulders of IT security teams, enabling them to perform other tasks.

To learn more about critical business identity governance use cases, and the vendors that support them, check out our Identity Governance Buyer’s Guide. Also, Gartner described identity governance use cases in the  2019 Critical Capabilities for Identity Governance and Administration report.


Ben Canner