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Single Sign On Solution

What is a Single Sign-On Solution?

Single sign-on solutions (SSO) are tools used to conveniently log-in to several platforms and accounts without frequently remembering your passwords. It works much like a typical password manager, albeit with a higher security level included.

The SSO tool lets you automatically log-in to any system after entering your credentials once. It remembers your usernames and passwords so you can quickly and confidently gain access to your apps with ease. You may think that SSO tools leave your company data in a critical and vulnerable position to cyberthreats. But as earlier mentioned, these tools offer an elevated security level by:

  • Granting access to IT departments for them to monitor each account, ensuring compliance with company protocols


  • Providing nuanced control over its compatible applications


  • Using encryption and other technologies to ensure that incoming and outgoing company data remains safe at all times


Since SSO solutions allow easy entry to connected apps and productivity platforms, you can get your systems ready quickly, resulting in greater work productivity.

Terms Related to Single Sign-On Solutions

Single sign-on is actually a working concept that’s part of a larger architecture called Federated Identity Management (FIM). FIM is a system arrangement made between different enterprises, allowing users to utilize one identification data across all the networks under the enterprises involved. FIM is built on a trust relationship between the participating enterprises in a group, and it paves the way for single sign-on solutions to be used.

There are other related terms you may encounter as you delve into the world of SSO tools. Here is an overview of them so that we can better understand how single sign-on truly works:

  • OAuth 2.0 – This is an open-standard authorization framework that lets you enter one website or platform by using your credentials from another platform.
  • OpenID Connect (OIDC) – This is an authentication protocol based on OAuth 2.0 and is used by developers to authenticate users without owning and managing password files, making way for SSO to take place.
  • Security Assertion Markup Language (SAML) – This is another open-standard authentication protocol based on XML. It lets identity providers and service providers exchange authorization and authentication data, linking user identity authentication to the authorization to use a particular service.
  • Active Directory Domain Services (AD DS) – This is a centralized directory service from Microsoft where users and resources can be added for central management. It is an early form of single sign-on technology where Kerberos and NTLM authentications protocols are used.
  • Active Directory Federation Services (AD FS) – This is another Microsoft-developed directory service that provides single sign-on functions and is compatible with both OIDC and SAML.
  • Lightweight Directory Access Protocol (LDAP) – This protocol allows anyone to easily find data about individuals, organizations, and other resources and lets you centrally manage your users and systems.


All these concepts and protocols can be used to create a robust architecture and system for single sign-on tools to work.

Benefits of Using Single Sign-On Tools

Generally, an SSO tool speeds up the login process and eliminates the tedious tasks of recovering lost passwords and locked-out accounts. But apart from that, it also has numerous other benefits, including the following:


More time to be productive

Imagine this scenario: You’re stuck in front of your computer trying to remember the password combination you’ve just reset yesterday. The new passcode doesn’t just come to your mind this morning. You’ve already spent ten minutes trying to figure out how you can log-in to your account. Finally, you give up and ask IT to reset your password. You lost precious time to start on your work simply because you had difficulties in remembering your password and had to wait for IT to reset it.

Now, an SSO tool prevents this by letting you save your new credentials the moment you changed it. The next time you need to login, you won’t have to re-enter it, giving you more time to start work early. This is especially useful for organizations that need to frequently change passwords after a few weeks or months, which are prone to misremembering them or entering old passwords and eventually locking out their accounts.

Better security for your tools

Single sign-on tools provide more than just easy access to systems. It also strengthens your platform’s existing security through different means such as:

  • Implementing multi-factor authentication and OTPs for new credentials or for sensitive systems that need an added layer of protection
  • Centrally controlling user access in different systems with the ability to activate or deactivate a user as needed
  • Enforce different levels of securities in passwords
  • Automatically provisioning licenses when removing old employees or adding new ones to the system
  • Granting IT control and monitoring to ensure company protocol compliance across all systems
  • Risk-based authentication (RBA) to continuously keep an eye on user habits
  • Real-time security reporting

One common misconception is that using SSO solutions leads to weaker security. That’s on the premise that if one master password is hacked or stolen, the entire system gets compromised.

However, using an SSO tool pushes you to create only one password that’s stronger and hard-to-guess since you only need to use this one strong password for all applications. Combined with other security measures like RBA and multi-factor authentication, SSO solutions can actually strengthen your entire business system’s protection from threats and theft.

One-stop access to all your apps

Using an SSO tool unifies all your business apps in one place. Simply enter your credentials once and get access to all the apps you’ll need for your workflow. No need to worry about opening different applications and entering your usernames and passwords for each app! Your single sign-on solution gives you one-stop access to your vital work platforms all in a single session, letting you smoothly transition from one app to another without password prompts interrupting your workflow.

By using SSO tools, you can access all company-approved apps, platforms, and websites without having to enter your credentials for each of them. Good SSO tools include a wide range of on-premise applications as well as cloud-based ones, accessible through a central login portal.

A more efficient IT team

Is your IT department being dragged by numerous account recovery and password reset requests? Free up your IT team from these tasks by using an SSO tool. Companies that use such tools report a reduction of login-related helpdesk requests by as much as 50% – that’s a lot of workload off your IT guys! Your IT team can then focus on what’s more important – developing technical aspects of your business and monitoring compliance of all users to company policies.

Reduced customer password fatigue and better conversion

Deploying an SSO tool for your enterprise apps or websites also has benefits for your end-customers. It generally reduces password fatigue and lets your customers convert easily due to seamlessly logging on to their accounts on your platforms. This is especially significant for businesses with multiple connected apps or shopping websites.

Keep in mind that customers can quickly leave their shopping carts on your site or app if they have a hard time signing in, recovering their accounts, or resetting their forgotten passwords. SSO tools can be handy to provide them seamless logging in experience. They only need one password to access all your sites and apps, improving their conversion and giving you more chances to offer your services to them successfully.

Choosing the Best SSO Tool for Your Business

What sets apart a good single sign-on solution from the rest? Here are some factors to consider when looking for the right SSO tool.

High Security Level

SSO tools should offer a high level of security for your organization. This is in light of using a single authorization tool to gain access to a multitude of work apps and platforms right away. Your tool should be able to keep your platforms and accounts safe from external threats while providing you the convenience of using a single user authorization.

Most SSO solutions today use encryption to protect your internal company data. Good SSO tools also let you add information to your platforms safely through secured directories and heightened authorization monitoring.

You can also ask for respondent feedback on the form itself. Through this, you can quickly improve on the forms for it to capture more accurate data that meets your business objectives. Improvements in your forms also mean that a greater number of people will be more willing to answer your forms in the future.


As with any other productivity tool or solution, your chosen SSO tool should be easy to use. It must sport a user-friendly interface both on its web portal and mobile app. A streamlined and clean interface with utmost responsiveness to any device – this is the ideal single sign-on solution for any organization.

Flexibility and Ease of Use on Mobile Devices

It’s worth stressing that your SSO tool should be mobile-friendly. That’s because nowadays, an increasing number of employers are asking their team members to use their personal devices and smartphones to open business platforms and apps. Look for a tool that offers a smooth mobile experience so you and your team can seamlessly transition from web to mobile without hampering the security.

Compatibility and Integration to a Wide Range of Apps

Single sign-on tools are meant to simplify the way you access the entire organization’s platforms and productivity tools. As such, look for an SSO tool that’s compatible with a wide range of apps that your business is currently using and will potentially use in the future.

Reliable Customer Support

Look for an SSO solution provider that offers reliable customer support should anything go wrong in your system. Help articles, email, phone, and live chat lines should be readily accessible to your company. The provider should also offer some onboarding to help ease you into using SSO for your business tools.

Finding the Best Single Sign-on Solution for Businesses Plus an Overview of Okta SSO

Companies require secure entry and user authentication to access their respective platforms and productivity tools. This often means plenty of accounts and passwords for just a single person.

Can you imagine how tedious it is to keep track of all your work-related usernames and passcodes? And it’s equally daunting for IT and security teams to monitor all these authentication procedures for each platform and tool your company is using. Even resetting forgotten passwords and recovering locked accounts regularly can be a pain!

These situations are what single sign-on solutions intend to solve. Get an overview of single sign-on solutions, how they work, and how to shop around for the best one. Also, learn more about Okta SSO, Platinum Partner’s affordable yet effective single sign-on solution for your business.

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