Access management for remote employees

Organizational IT leaders are most likely face a difficult decision related to allowing their employees to access company systems and information remotely or when working in a remote capacity. They are likely aware of the many benefits, but they have a dilemma: As more employees work outside of the office, how are they able to effectively provide efficient solutions to managing this data.

Solutions have adapted over the years so that employers can better benefit employees who work outside of the office. For example, technology solutions like single sign-on and self-service password reset, were first just for employees who worked in a collective work environment, in an office setting, but now they can now benefit all employees within an organization no matter the location of the employee.

For employees who work outside the company’s network, a single sign-on solution provides a way for employees to log into an “SSO anywhere” solution. This allows users who are not physically connected to the company network and want to use SSO, to log in from home or another location using their Active Directory credentials. In this scenario, users only have to enter a combination of password and user name once. This automatically logs them into all applications and resources across the company network and in the cloud, without the need of logging in again.

In regard to self-service password resets, many types of these solutions now allow users to log in and reset their passwords if needed, from anywhere. They simply choose the “Forgot My Password” button from the company’s log on window or portal and are then able to securely reset their passwords after answering several security questions. No need to burden the internal company helpdesk with calls seeking assistance.

For users on the go who use a laptop that does not have a connection to the company’s network, they click on the “Forgot My Password” button that is provided on the log-in screen. The SSO solution then presents the same questions as the normal self-service password reset procedure (with network connection). After correctly answering the questions, users can then be automatically logged onto the machine. In addition, many self-service reset password solutions also are mobile-friendly for those using their mobile phone, tablet or other device.

So, while remote employees might not enjoy other benefits of working at the office — such as free coffee, in-person comraderie and copies — they can still benefit from using the company’s solutions.

Dean Wiech is managing director of Tools4ever, a global provider of identity and access management solutions.

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