The Power of SSO: What It Is, and Why You Should Have It
Today’s businesses increasingly rely on a variety of web-based tools, mobile apps, and locally hosted software solutions to deliver value to their customers. Unfortunately, securely managing access to all of these tools can difficult, time-consuming and expensive. Just ask your company’s IT administrators.
One of the best solutions for this problem is Single Sign On (SSO) technology. But what is SSO? Is it a good fit for your company? Let’s take a look.
What is SSO?
Your company almost certainly uses a variety of web-based solutions as part of its basic, day-to-day workflows. Your ERP, CRM, marketing analytics, and other essential business tools may all be cloud-based applications. Each of those solutions require unique, individual log-in credentials in order to access your company’s data. In order to access these services and accounts, your workers typically need to sign into each service individually.
At the same time, your company also needs some way to easily control which users have access to specific kinds of data. As worker roles change — like gaining new responsibilities, or moving from one team to another — your administrators also need to update and alter what kinds of information those workers can access. On a logistical level, managing these multiple sign-ins and account permissions can be a real headache.
But what if each user had a unique, secure log-in that automatically connected them with every service they needed to use? What if administrators could manage user roles and account access across all those applications from a single system? Not only would this simplify things for the users — they now just need a single password — but it would also significantly streamline operations for your administrators.
This is the basic concept behind SSO. When your workers log into one of their applications, the SSO software automatically logs them into the other software they typically use. If those users need to access new applications, or have their access changed within the applications they already use, administrators can manage those roles from within the SSO software itself.
Why is SSO useful?
Imagine that your company has decided to start using a new business tool, like Slack or Dropbox. You set up accounts for everyone who needs them, and you send out login credentials to each user. Every time they use the tool, they need to log in. At the same time, they don’t use this new software every day. Maybe they only use the CRM, so that’s the only password they know by heart.
How long will it be before someone on that team loses the email — or worse, sticky note — that has their username and password? How much time will the IT and sales team waste by logging one person in to a system they rarely use?
In an SSO setup, this would never happen. Users sign in once, and the SSO software handles the rest. You can add new applications to any user’s SSO profile — or to an entire group of users — quickly and easily. Users can even gain one-click access to all of their applications through a customized user portal.
SSO can also be used to access on-premise services, providing added security for your networks, systems, and other digital resources.
Does your company need SSO?
SSO technology is an essential tool for any company that relies on multiple online or cloud-based solutions for its day-to-day operations. SSO delivers the convenient-yet-secure access your workers need to get their jobs done. It also allows your managers and administrators to streamline and scale operations quickly. This allows you to efficiently onboard workers to new business tools.
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