July 26, 2018 Blogby Pierre Vanderfeesten

How to integrate consent management with existing IAM solutions

In this blog post, Pierre Vanderfeesten, Product Marketer at iWelcome, elaborates on the rising need for consent lifecycle management capabilities on top of an organisation’s running Identity & Access Management solution.


Over the past months, a lot of information was spread – at iWelcome we plead guilty as well – on how GDPR will change the landscape of digital consumer interactions. And indeed, GDPR requires organisations to implement new features as “freely given, specific, well-informed and unambiguous consent” and “data retention policies”. Many organisations, however, seem to have forgotten that the real reason to change their digital interaction patterns with consumers is actually driven by a pure business argument: to build trusted relationships with customers! 


Next level digital consumer engagements are about offering ease and creating trust 

The end of an era has arrived. Consumers are sick and tired of endless meaningless and impersonal advertisements in their search engines or random commercial information in their email boxes. Instead, they expect to be treated the same way digitally as they are used to in the world of brick and mortar. Digital consumers have entered the next level of maturing and want to be respected as such.

To serve this demand, organisations need to focus on two aspects: offer ease of use and create trust. They need to redesign their customer journeys and incorporate opportunities for consumers to actively enter into conversation with their organisation, also known as ‘dialogue design’. 

To facilitate this, it is first and foremost important to run a proper Consumer IAM solution. This allows organisations to manage consumer data in such a way that it is gathered and processed gradually and smoothly. Doesn’t your organisation have a Consumer IAM in place or would you like to replace your current solutions? Feel free to read our blog post on the differences between Classic IAM and Consumer IAM or check out the remainder of our website.

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Problem: most Consumer IAM solutions lack the right consent capabilities

OK, let’s now assume your organisation has a Consumer IAM solution in place. Reality today is that most of these solutions lack the right capabilities for managing consent and preference settings nor have the ability to link these consent and preferences to the different types of data that this consent is applicable to.

I’ll explain this with an easy example:

You’re setting up a dialogue design workflow in your registration process. Part of this workflow is to offer consumers the choice to subscribe to your monthly newsletter. Once a consumer decides to ‘opt-in’, this so-called consent needs to be captured, stored and linked to your e-mail address. In most Consumer IAM solutions, the e-mail address data values are stored in system X. But system X does not have the capabilities to add consent information nor can it provide options for editing and deletion by the consumer. How to cope with this? And how should these consents and preferences be managed throughout their entire lifecycle?


Connect a Consent Lifecycle Management as-a-Service solution to your existing IAM infra

Consent and preference settings are particularly complex since these are subject to regular change – think of updated privacy statements and changed personal preferences by the consumer. The key to success lies in implementing a Consent Lifecycle Management (CLM) solution as a separate module and connecting it to your existing IAM infrastructure.

 iWelcome CLM(2)

All data information that is linked to consents and preferences are stored in this separate CLM module. Think of data attributes, data values, consent information, processing purposes, the retention data and ‘consentable documents’ (documents that need consumer’s consent such as revised privacy policy documents). This information is captured and made available for self-service portals by RESTful APIs. This way, organisations save themselves the trouble (and costs!) of re-building their entire IT infrastructure while staying on par with the ever-changing market standards in the digital arena. 


Pierre Vanderfeesten

Photo PV

Product Marketer at iWelcome

With 10 years of experience in IT product marketing, Pierre has gained vast amounts of knowledge and expertise in the field of product and digital marketing. Within iWelcome, Pierre is responsible for product marketing and digital content creation.

Feel free to repost this blog on your website or social channels! But when you do so, please be so kind to mention the source and give us a notice via marketing@iwelcome.com.