The online education landscape is transforming at a phenomenal rate. As the field of education continues to evolve, so do the kinds of tools and techniques employed in educational institutions.

As more and more sensitive student data is being moved online, security in EdTech firms becomes a pertinent issue that needs to be given top priority. Logging in to different educational platforms requires separate login credentials, and this can make password management complicated.

One practical way to effectively tackle this issue is to employ single sign-on (SSO) for EdTech firm solutions. There are many types of SSO solutions to choose from, each one with its pros and cons. EdTech firms need to compare and analyze these options to figure out what works best for them.  

What Is SSO for an Edtech Firm?

Single sign-on (SSO) is a cloud security technology that combines different application login credentials into one and permits a user to access multiple online platforms using one set of login credentials. SSO is often used in workforce applications involving remote workers who are managed by an internal team. Users are assigned one username and password that can be used to access multiple online applications.

SSO for EdTech firms and workforce SSO are among the common applications for this technology. SSO is a significant integration feature for EdTech firms as it allows for the seamless authentication of users who use third-party apps to access different educational platforms.

Benefits of SSO for EdTech Firm

Implementing SSO solutions for their online learning platform can provide a suite of benefits to EdTech firms and their learners.

1. Stronger Passwords

Since users have to create and use only one password when using SSO, they are more likely to create stronger passwords that provide more security.

2. Single Point for Password Re-Entry

The administrators of a site can enforce password re-entry after a certain amount of time to ascertain that the same user is still online on the signed-in device. SSO enables assigning a central place for this password re-entry instead of asking the user to enforce it across multiple apps.

3. Internal Credential Management

User passwords are generally stored remotely by applications that may or may not follow optimum security practices. With SSO, the passwords are stored internally in a system that implements more stringent security measures.

4. Multi-Factor Authentication

Many sites use multi-factor authentication to authenticate a user, which is much more secure than relying on a password alone. SSO makes it easier to activate multi-factor authentication at a single point.

5. Better Enforcement of Password Policy

The usage of only one password improves the scope of password policy enforcement. Some institutions require users to reset their passwords periodically, and SSO makes this process easier to implement as every user has only one password to reset.

6. Minimize Time Wasted on Password

One major benefit of SSO is that it helps reduce the time wasted on password recovery. Since SSO protocols simplify the password management process for users, the time wasted in resetting and recovering passwords is considerably cut down.

How to Choose the Best SSO Solution for Your EdTech Firm?

There are many options available when it comes to choosing SSO for EdTech firms. Analyzing the various options and comparing them to figure out the best one for your organization can be tricky.

Here are a few pointers to help you make an informed decision and avoid common mistakes companies make while choosing SSO solutions.

1. Security

When it comes to choosing SSO solutions for EdTech firms, remember that not all SSO solutions are equal when it comes to the degree of security offered. Any enterprise with online operations faces the threat of data breaches.

According to a report by IBM, the global average cost of a data breach was USD 4.45 million in 2023. Thus, every EdTech firm has to first ascertain its security needs and choose an SSO provider who can satisfactorily address these concerns.

2. Budget

There are several SSO tools available in the market with a wide array of features. EdTech firms must finalize their budget and explore SSO options that provide the most value within their budgetary constraints. Organizations with basic SSO requirements can go for bare-bones SSO solutions, while others with more complex needs require additional features.

Focus on what exactly your firm needs so that you don’t get overcharged for additional irrelevant features.

3. Beware of Hidden Costs

Every SSO provider has a different way of charging EdTech firms. Some may charge on a per-user basis, while others may also include the number of app connectors, API calls, or devices connected. Also, in some SSO solutions, certain features may be in-built, while in others, they may be available as a paid add-on.

4. Compatibility with Your Infrastructure

Before investing in any SSO solutions, EdTech firms have to examine their current infrastructure. If your company already has an existing identity and access management (IAM) solution in place, then you can invest in an SSO solution that will integrate best with it. If not, then your firm will have to invest in an SSO solution with built-in IAM and SSO capabilities.

5. User Experience

Implementing SSO for EdTech firms is all about streamlining access to various online platforms and offering an amazing user experience. While choosing an SSO provider, one should check whether they provide an easy setup and configuration process to minimize the time required to get started. Ideally, SSO solutions should support mobile devices and apps as many users access educational platforms on the go.

In Closing Thoughts

With so many SSO providers in the market, EdTech firms can get confused when choosing the best SSO solutions for their organization. Companies should analyze their security requirements, budgetary constraints, and available infrastructural support before investing in custom software development.

User experience is of utmost importance when implementing SSO solutions because the ultimate goal of any EdTech firm is to provide an excellent user experience.

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