There’s a trend that we’re noticing in the past couple of years, and that’s the fact that more and more enterprises are making the switch from on-premise infrastructure to cloud-based technologies and storage. With that being said, both employees and customers seem to expect seamless access to applications and websites, which is not always the case, especially with large enterprises that have hundreds of touchpoints.
Managing all of them is going to put a massive strain on your entire IT department, but things like enterprise single sign on solutions can actually make a lot of things easier. But plenty of enterprises still don’t know what they are and what the benefits are, so let’s discuss that for a minute, shall we?
What are SSO solutions?
SSO, or single sign-on, is an authentication process that allows users to only use a single set of credentials to gain access to multiple applications or touchpoints that are all related to each other. The beauty of it is that when implemented right, you can use it regardless of what kind of platform or technology you’re using – it just works. And it’s a lot more streamlined than handling potentially thousands of accounts for all your users, while also having a number of other benefits.
It Streamlines the User Experience
Yes, we know we’re starting things off with the obvious one, but that streamlined experience is one of SSO’s main benefits. Users don’t need multiple logins anymore, which leaves them with nothing else but to enjoy the digital experience rather than dealing with things like password fatigue.
And if you’re thinking that password fatigue isn’t a big deal, you’re very much mistaken, simply because of a thing many fail to consider. If your users think that signing up to your system is difficult, there’s a much higher chance of them leaving than going through with the sign-up and converting. You would be surprised at how many customers that shop at major online retailers such as Amazon abandon their shopping carts just because they couldn’t log in quickly and efficiently. If that’s you, you’re losing a customer because your system is too complex for them.
Security Is Significantly Improved
For most of the enterprises that opt for an SSO solution, security is the main reason they do that. Now, it could also arguably be seen as the main weakness, but that’s only in theory – things are different in practice. The theory is that if someone gets that one set of credentials you’re using, they basically have access to all touchpoints you’re able to access.
However, that theory forgets that if you only have a single password to remember, chances are you’re going to create one that’s a lot more difficult to guess or crack. You won’t need to write it down either, because remembering a single password isn’t all that difficult, and you’ll have a lot more leeway in terms of implementing other best practices when it comes to the password, like making it longer, using special characters and mixing up lowercase and uppercase letters.
Oh, and here’s the kicker. If you want to, you can combine most SSO solutions with things like multi-factor authentication, and add an extra layer of security to the entire solution.
There is a Boost in Productivity
Ask your IT support team what the most common inquiry is when it comes to the user experience, and chances are they’ll tell you they’re getting quite a lot of requests for users that want their passwords to reset because they forgot them. Tying in with the previous benefit we discussed, users will only have a single password to remember which means they won’t forget it as much. This way, both the users and the support team will be able to focus on their jobs rather than dealing with mundane issues that shouldn’t exist in the first place.
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You’ll Notice Easier Software Adoption
We live in a world where there is an app for literally everything you might need. For an enterprise, this provides an opportunity to make things simpler, boost ROI, you name it – there’s an app for it. However, most of those apps are difficult, and you might find that you have to give up on an app because the signup process is complex. With an SSO solution in place, the users who have been authenticated already with another app that you’re using can easily sign on without needing to sign up again.
Technology has a goal to make our lives easier, not add frustrations where we don’t want them. Implementing an SSO for your enterprise does just that, and keeps you free from difficult signup processes and forgotten passwords, leaving you to focus on the enterprise itself, and all the things that actually matter.