Can passwords reduce the productivity of employees?

Employees say passwords are preventing them from doing their jobs, according to a survey by Axiad

Passwords are a major hindrance to productivity, as people regularly forget their credentials and get locked out of their computers and apps, this is according to a report from authentication company Axiad

The leading provider of cloud-based passwordless authentication and secure interactions for users and machines has released the results of its Fall 2021 Passwords & Productivity Survey, which states that 60% of respondents are prevented from doing their jobs by password-related issues.

Two thousand office workers in the US were surveyed on behaviours, attitudes, and experiences with passwords and other identity authentication methods. According to the survey results, identity credential management issues are holding employees back by impacting productivity.

 

As IT changes, it’s important processes do too

“Current approaches to authentication are failing employees. IT is charged with controlling processes and keeping systems secure, while users want to be more independent and just get their job done. Frustrations are high when so many password-based authentication issues get in the way of employees doing their job. IT leaders can and must take more initiative to move away from passwords and transition to a user-centric passwordless authentication that reduces these frustrations,” said Bassam Al-Khalidi, Co-CEO & Co-Founder, Axiad.

Some key findings from the report included: 

  • 60% admit that authentication processes have stopped them from doing their job
  • 59% have had to contact the IT department at their workplace because they were locked out of their computer, with almost half (48%) saying they’ve been locked out of productivity and communication apps like Slack
  • Just under half of all respondents (48%) have forgotten their passwords at some point
  • On average, it takes almost 5 hours (4 hours 43 minutes) to fix authentication issues at work, with 15% admitting that it takes 9 hours or longer to fix authentication issues at their workplace
  • While 67% of respondents said they are aware of multi-factor authentication as an alternative to passwords, 46% said their own IT departments had never asked them to use anything other than passwords

 

Creating more secure accounts 

Passwords are often considered among the weakest links in the cybersecurity chain. Many employees don’t use a password generator and often use the same credentials across multiple services.

Although cybersecurity experts recommend using a password manager to store account credentials securely, many employees choose to write their passwords down instead. This has become a became a particularly pronounced problem since most people started working from home.

"Beyond multiple passwords, multiple MFA solutions can be just as challenging for users to manage. If there’s an issue with their YubiKey or mobile authentication app, users need to know which platform to go to and how to fix it. These new authentication methods can’t succeed unless the solution puts the employees front and center and simplifies their login experiences,” added Al-Khalidi.

 

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