This guest post is written by Dave Miller, Chief Security Officer, Covisint

Oil and Gas companies announced more investments in joint ventures in 2011 than ever before (January 17, 2012, Oil & Gas Investor.com). In fact, joint venture announcements peaked in 2011 at $12.3 billion, and totaled $36 billion between 2006 and Year-end 2011. With this high investment in Joint Ventures, it’s not surprising to see that the majority of jobs in Oil & Gas – 77% or 7.1 million – are from resources located outside of the core Oil & Gas organization (Energy Tomorrow).

This creates major communication challenges in the industry such as:

  • Providing access to the extended enterprise
  • Obtaining visibility into activity outside of the core organization
  • Establishing trust with organizations or users to allow collaboration
  • Extended enterprise compliance to industry regulations and standards
  • Standardization and use of technology and building collaborative tools for all
  • Controlling and managing cost
  • Keeping up with the pace of change inside and outside of the organization
  • Maintaining positive and consistent user experience with applications and systems

Even when access is obtained, multiple logins are required for the various applications and systems. And how is security maintained? External users need to be provisioned and de-provisioned quickly to certain applications and information as roles change. By not controlling access quickly, security is jeopardized and business risk taken. This leads to wasted time, frustrated constituents, increased cost and poor quality results – all leading to failure of vital projects, including high investment joint ventures. This must change.

A cloud-based Identity Management (IDM) Platform supports the success of your extended enterprise by enabling simple, yet coordinated communication and collaboration between organizational constituents. This type of platform delivers the results you need, allowing you to leverage your existing investments whiles shielding you from the cost and complexity of developing and deploying IT solutions on your own.

With this type of platform, your community of users can have On Demand access to applications and information and the tools to communicate and collaborate securely with others across the extended enterprise. You are able to leverage your existing investment in applications and have the infrastructure in place to add new applications and services as your community expands and becomes more diverse. 

A core benefit of a cloud-based IDM solution is you are able to maintain the security and privacy of your community of users. Within the extended enterprise, direct staff, contractors, suppliers, partners, joint venture participants and other providers change roles and job statuses frequently. Your challenge is to facilitate change while maintaining tight control and access to your proprietary systems.

A cloud-based IDM Platform works behind the scenes to help you manage the identity and authentication of users, and give them access to appropriate applications and information – all through a single login.

What are the benefits of this approach? Your organization will:

  • Have a centralized, auditable security and privacy framework,
  • Be insulated from the problem of complex security requirements,
  • Improve application adoption and usability within your extended enterprise, and
  • Have ability to manage the costs of adding additional users.

In addition to providing a single, secure point for provisioning access to all information, applications, and systems required to conduct business with your extended workforce, a Cloud-based IDM platform will:

  • Increase user productivity
  • Reduce cost and complexity
  • Support trusted collaboration
  • Remove collaboration barriers,
  • Harness and secures intellectual capital
  • Accelerate innovation and
  • Improve compliance and standards adoption. 

For more information on the cloud-based IDM platform, please contact me directly or simply comment on the blog below.

David Miller, CSO, Covisint
dmiller@covisint.com