The IT industry focuses mainly on large organizations since they are often the ones who have many Identity and Access Management issues with their employees. Small businesses rarely realize that they often have many of the same issues. Here are some IT issues small businesses may have:
Smaller organizations, just like larger corporations have to access many systems and applications in order to perform their jobs. For example think of a credit union. Employees need to access several different financial systems in order to assist their customers. Entering credentials for each of these systems is time consuming, not to mention very difficult to remember. Hence why many employees tent to write down their credentials.
To make these password issues even more difficult, small businesses often need to do more with less. They don’t have an extensive budget to fix IT infrastructure or implement large, enterprise solutions. Instead they need to find ways to be more efficient without breaking the bank. This can often be difficult though since many password solutions are aimed towards big business, and the thousands of employees that they have. Additionally, small businesses compared to larger organizations often have very small IT departments or helpdesks, sometimes only one or two people. When an employee forgets their password, or is locked out of an application, they need to go through the process of resetting their passwords.
Case in Point
Case in point is Needham Bank in Massachusetts. Needham is a private bank with less than 170 employees. End users at the bank need access to several different systems and applications in order to properly assist customers. “End users became frustrated at the number of disparate passwords they had, and the frequency they would have to enter the user names and passwords,” commented James Gordon, First Vice President of Information Technology at Needham Bank. It was also frustrating when employees had to halt what they were doing and contact the help desk to reset their password if they were locked out. Customers also became frustrated, as they had to wait for bank employees to sign into each application separately, which was time consuming.
To resolve their issues, Needham bank implemented both a single sign-on solution and a self-service password reset solution. SSO allows them to use a single set of credentials for all systems and applications they need to access to help customers. The password reset solution allows employees to reset their own password without having to contact the helpdesk. They simply answer several security questions, which they previously provided answers for during initial enrollment, and are able to securely reset their own password.