Yesterday one of the vendors (not Novell), who was a little late in an analyst briefing call, said that he had to talk before to a journalist. He mentioned that this journalist was somewhat surprised by the large number of announcements in the Identity Management and GRC industry in these days. Novell is one of the vendors who should feel guilty - they are very active in providing news these days.

One of the recent announcements is about Novell's Compliance Management Platform. The better term probably would have been GRC Management Platform because Novell doesn't end with Compliance but focuses as well on other, more Governance- and Risk Management-related aspects. But at least they have understood that customers require a platform, not point solutions to address the GRC requirements (which, by the way, never ever have been more relevant than in these days).

Novell starts with a bundle that consists of several existing products like Novell Identity Manager, Novell Access Manager, and Novell Sentinel, their SIEM and auditing solution. But it goes beyond this, providing as well additional tools which provide best practices from Novell's implementation projects and thus will support in implementation.

I assume that Novell will work on the integration, the current solution being just a starting point. At least the announcement proves that Novell has understood some important things: GRC is extremly relevant - and it requires platform approaches, not singular solutions.

The second announcement made by novell is their acquisition of Managed Objects. That is particularly interesting to me because I have been watching Managed Objects for quite a while, as one of the really innvoative vendors in the Service Management market. Managed Objects provides analysis, dashboard, and management functionalities to Novell's systems management solutions. In other words: Novell is moving forward from a technical approach to a better support for IT management.

That is, by the way, common to both announcements: Novell is moving forward from being a very technical vendor to one that understands and supports the requirements of the IT management - with IT/Business alignment being at the centre.

It will take some time for Novell to go that path. But the recent announcements are at least interesting signals for a fundamental, but still evolutionary change at Novell.