Does it feel as though everyone’s suddenly talking about authorization?
We think so too and asked Axiomatics President & CCO Jim Barkdoll his thoughts on the matter in our latest episode of Dynamically Speaking.
Check out his thoughts on new market entrants, what enterprises should look for in a dynamic authorization solution – and more.
Kelly: Hi, and welcome to another episode of Dynamically Speaking! We’re pleased to welcome back Jim Barkdoll, President and Chief Commercial Officer for Axiomatics. Thanks so much for joining us again, Jim!
Jim: Of course, it’s always great to see you, Kelly. Appreciate the time!
Kelly: Excellent. So, today, we wanted to talk a little bit about some trends we’re seeing in the authorization market.
In particular, we’re seeing quite a few new entrants who are receiving funding and attention and bringing a variety of solutions to bear.
So with that, as some introductory context, can you tell us a little bit about what you’re seeing in terms of these new entrants to the market?
Jim: Yeah. First, I think it’s important to point out, not only is it new entrants to the market, but I think it’s kind of a renewed focus or attention on a market that’s been in place, right.
Of course, access, and the ability to assign authorization to people has been a technology we’ve relied upon in our infrastructures for a long time. Most most notably, of course, role role based has been kind of the the accepted standard for a static method of assigning access to people in applications and to data.
So, not only are we seeing new entrants to the marketplace, we’re seeing people that have existing solutions and or are kind of tangential technology partners to this market, addressing and understanding the need that kind of the next version, or a better version of role-based is required.
So, I think that’s why you’re starting to see different people in the market. But also, there’s a lot of increased chatter and coverage in the market, right, as as the needs have become more and more clear.
Kelly: Excellent. That that makes good sense. We’re noticing too, that many of these new players have attracted funding, both from venture capital firms as well as from private equity funds. What do you believe is attracting investors to the authorization market?
Jim: I think it’s a situation that continues to repeat itself, right, where the [venture capitalists] VC’s and private equity firms have had success is looking at markets that have had a stable, kind of successful technology run, and then are poised for reinvention or reinvigoration or a change that’s happening. And that’s certainly what’s happening on the authorization side.
So when you look at whether it was the Service Desk, or the database, or any number of technologies that we all rely upon, you can see that there was kind of a status quo and an accepted way to do things.
And then there was a window or a door for people to see, oh, look, we can reinvent this, or we can make this existing technology much better because of a convergence of whether it’s external factors or just new technology being available. And I think that’s certainly what attracts people to this space, right? It’s a needed, relied upon technology. And if we can make it better, or make it more adaptable to the new technologies that we’re working with today, certainly that that’s where I think people see advances and that draws the attention from from VC’s.
Kelly: Okay, that’s good to know. I think my next question, you’ve answered it in parts, but, you know, Axiomatics has been around for quite some time. There are other authorization vendors who have been around for a few few years, and have been well established. A lot of these vendors that we’re talking about today, are really new within the last year or two.
So, my question then is why now? What is it about right now, that makes it such a good time for all of these new entrants to come into the market? And also to attract funding as well?
Jim: Yeah, it’s a couple things, one, so first, I see kind of a change in the way of our infrastructure is accelerating of Cloud.
So, for, for 10 to 15 years, we’ve all heard about the cloud and the move to the Cloud. And, and it really had started to, of course, take root. But it’s really advanced to where now you see efforts like low code, or no code, or microservices, or datalinks projects, the technologies are there to make those things come to life. And we’re able to experience and access data in in new and exciting ways.
So, one is, is Cloud technology and Cloud innovation.
The other was the acceleration from the pandemic, right? That the change of us coming into the office every day about kind of a traditional relationship of being on a network, interacting with an application, and knowing that person’s identity, and having static access to that, you know, based on this role, you get to do XYZ function. That’s changed, right?
So now we’ve got Cloud applications that are very dynamic in nature. Who you who you want to have access So what you want them to be able to do changes on a regular basis. And we’re also making exposing much more sensitive information because of this. And so I think those two things are certainly drivers.
And then final thing would be the realization of Zero Trust, again, a highly marketed term, but a super important one, when you actually adhere to the principles of Zero Trust, right? So when you look at, again, the the first two steps of the NIST best practice of authentication and authorization, that those are two critical points to Zero Trust. And so I think when you combine all those things, it certainly made made for an awareness for other vendors to say, hey, that there needs to be solutions in this space.
Kelly: And speaking of solutions in this space, we’ve talked about the number of new entrants here, and there were already established vendors. And, you know, Axiomatics is an incredibly established vendor, with all of these new solutions coming to market or the promise of these new solutions.
To your mind, Jim, what are the critical things that enterprises looking at authorization should consider as they evaluate the lay of the land?
Jim: Yeah. So first, it’s important. This is not a new technology, right? I think that’s what hopefully is come across. So far, in these questions.
The technology has been around, it just wasn’t adopted, because the the need wasn’t there. So. And when I say the need wasn’t there, the need wasn’t there for the majority of the market. Not everyone was, you know, a microservices environment, or datalinks environment. And so when you look at the small to midsize businesses, maybe they weren’t experiencing this pain.
But what’s important to note is there were companies that were experiencing this, right, some of the most complicated enterprises in the world have been dealing with this problem for over 10 years.
And so when you look at a vendor such as us, for example, and what should you look for in a vendor, when you’re looking to space, you should look for somebody that’s got a proven track record, a proven methodology for deployment.
While the the simple step of applying authorization make sense to people, especially you whether that’s attribute driven or policy driven, however, you want to call that, that part makes sense, the act of integrating this into your environment, it involves many complex areas of your business. So you’re going to want a vendor who has understands that and has infrastructure built to support that.
Kelly: Okay, excellent. Good guidance!
So, for the last question, we’re going to do something a little different. I’m going to ask you to look into your crystal ball here.
So. with all of the things that we’ve talked about, what do you believe this means for the future of the authorization market?
Jim: I hope I hope I have a good crystal ball. But it looks selfishly first, I think you look at you know, where’s Axiomatics is going to be, Axiomatics is going to continue to be the leader in the space, we have been for the last 10 years, highly, as we talked about highly complicated enterprises rely on us, people with complicated infrastructure. So, you’re going to continue to see us lead in that space.
And then you’re going to see these new entrants bringing in a level of competition, which is good for every market, right?
So I think you’ll see some, some new features being driven by that. And not only the new entrants, but the customers as they start to evolve and start to use this technology. Of course, there’s going to be requirements driven there.
I think it’s safe to say it’s going to be a robust competition. There’ll be many vendors in this space. But people will start to find their niches, for example, Axiomatics, is handling complex enterprises with multiple use cases.
I also start to think you’ll start to see some consolidation in the market, whether it’s some of these vendors not making it, not being successful, right, that tends to happen when you have a lot of startups, some maybe will combine for some will maybe be joined a kind of tangential markets have technology partners, maybe in the identity space, so I think you’ll start to see maybe a little bit of consolidation as well.
Kelly: Okay, great. Thank you. Well, that’s all the time we have for today, Jim, but I want to thank you again for your time and your thoughts. And we look forward to welcoming you back in the in the new year to see if any of any of this how much of this has has come to pass, certainly!
Jim: My pleasure, Kelly, happy holidays and thanks for the time!