A question came across the ASAE Technology Section list this week about how to manage multiple logins for a variety of web-based services offered to members of an association. I chose to deliver a bit of a rant rather than a direct answer. I’ve posted my note below:
I think the time has come where any serious vendor in the association market should support authentication from another system for their product and associations should begin to demand it.
As others have posted, this level of integration is relatively easy to achieve via web services. Sure, each association/system will have its quirks that may require some tweaking but the basics are well defined.
Hostile user/login management systems immediately cripple your ability to create member value on the web. We, as an industry, shouldn’t tolerate it any longer.
I think that people these days are willing to create a new login for organizations/companies that they interact with and receive value from. One login. Unless the value you provide is incredibly high, most will not be happy to create multiple logins for just you and many will not bother. Vendors take note: you’ll be at an increasingly greater competitive disadvantage the longer you fail to support external authentication mechanisms in your services and products.