What happened

Okta (NASDAQ:OKTA) shareholders beat a surging market in November as the stock rose 17% compared to the 11% increase in the S&P 500, according to data provided by S&P Global Market Intelligence.

The rally added to big gains for the software specialist, which has more than doubled so far in 2020.

A man at work behind a computer screen.

Image source: Getty Images.

So what

Investors pushed Okta stock higher last month along with other software-as-a-service giants on hopes that these businesses will continue seeing strong growth even as the COVID-19 threat fades. The pandemic has accelerated a shift toward putting more work activity online, lifting Okta's prospects. But Wall Street in November was also excited about the potential for surging sales in the identity management company's Q3 report, which was released Dec. 2.

Now what

Okta revealed in that announcement that growth was indeed strong through late October. The company added hundreds of new enterprise customers on its way to a 42% sales increase.

CEO Todd McKinnon and his team expect continued elevated gains ahead, with sales rising between 32% and 33% in the fiscal fourth quarter, equating to 40% gains for the full year.

This article represents the opinion of the writer, who may disagree with the “official” recommendation position of a Motley Fool premium advisory service. We’re motley! Questioning an investing thesis -- even one of our own -- helps us all think critically about investing and make decisions that help us become smarter, happier, and richer.