March 25, 2015 3 Comments
According to Forrester Research, global software-as-a-service (SaaS) revenue was $63.2 billion dollars in 2014 with the market expected to grow by 110% to $132.6 billion in 2020. What continues to drive SaaS adoption and growth? Historically, companies were required to build and manage IT infrastructure and buy expensive software licenses to run applications on top of it. SaaS gives companies an attractive alternative. Below are seven key benefits of SaaS, as well as three key considerations to address when evaluating providers.
- Higher Adoption – Most corporate users are or have used the Internet to do work. Since SaaS applications are accessed by users via web browsers, they tend to have higher adoption rates and lower learning curves.
- Lower Costs – Because SaaS applications are subscription-based, companies do not incur capital expense for hardware, people or software. Companies pay for what they need, when they need (operating expense).
- No Lock-In – Customers have the option of cancelling or not renewing annual or monthly SaaS subscriptions. Subscriptions highly incent SaaS providers to deliver positive customer experience and satisfaction.
- Quick Deployment – While traditional software can take months or weeks to deploy, SaaS can be accessed immediately with a web browser. Immediate access cuts the time-to-benefit for both companies and users.
- Seamless Upgrades – SaaS providers manage all updates and upgrades ensuring applications are current. SaaS providers also manage data backup, as well as infrastructure maintenance for performance and scale.
- Systems Integration – Most SaaS providers offer customization capabilities to meet specific needs. SaaS providers also create APIs to enable connections between internal applications and other cloud venders.
- Work Anywhere – SaaS applications can be accessed any place, any time, from any device via the Internet. Users experience increased productivity by having their data, systems and tools always at their fingertips.
- Data Mobility – When customers want to sever relationships with a SaaS provider, can their data be extracted? When a SaaS provider goes under, what happens to the data (i.e., is it destroyed)?
- IT Compliance – Certain industries have compliance requirements for data protection and security; e.g., HIPAA for healthcare. Do the SaaS provider’s compliance and security practices meet the required business needs?
- Service Outages – Service outages are not a matter of if, but when. Do the availability guarantees and service level agreements from the SaaS provider align with the company’s business requirements?
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