Businesses across the world rely on various types of software to streamline and improve their daily operations and the successful businesses are constantly searching for faster and cheaper ways to get things done more efficiently. One way to do this is through utilizing Software-as-a-Service (Saas), which enables you to obtain the necessary software in a budget-friendly manner. Learn more about how Saas can benefit your business while also saving you money.
What is Saas, and how does it work?
Not too many years ago, the main way to get software installed on your devices was to either buy a physical CD or directly download the software through the internet. This software then needed to be installed on the users’ machines which meant they had to have a significant amount of storage capacity and processing power to efficiently run the software. Not to mention, the user also had to purchase a license for the software copy which was typically limited to one license per machine. This meant if the user wanted to have multiple copies of the software on different machines, they would have to pay twice for it.
In the business world, software delivery was streamlined so that on-premises (on-prem) servers held the software programs, and users accessed these programs via the company’s intranet. The user’s own devices acted as mediums for entering input and displaying output, but most, if not all, of the processing was done by the on-prem servers. With this type of setup, economically priced license packages allowed business to obtain a single software copy that could be efficiently used by hundreds of users at a time.
Today, SaaS essentially allows you to go on the internet, and “borrow” the machines of a service provider to access the different types of software applications installed on those specific machines. Since the software is installed on the service providers machines, the user will only need an internet connection to access the SaaS apps. Now, users can use different types of software applications on the go through their mobile devices as long as those said devices are connected to the internet. This means employees can effectively work from home and not have to be in office to access applications.
Should You Switch to SaaS or Stay With On-Prem?
SaaS would be the ideal solution for those looking to reduce their costs. With on-prem software, businesses would first need to buy the hardware, which needs to be maintained to ensure proper functionality. Next, you will need to purchase the software license and pay yearly support fees, which can get rather expensive compared alongside the costs of using SaaS.
With SaaS, you only need to pay a monthly or annual subscription which gives you access to that server’s software applications. Since the cost is cheaper to pay on a monthly or annual basis, this allows users to diversify their software applications in multiple SaaS platforms.
How Flexible is SaaS?
On-prem solutions used to have two main advantages over SaaS: first they were granted more functionality and second, they used to be more customizable. However, SaaS vendors today are constantly introducing new features to make work easier for their users. Also, businesses have the ability to integrate SaaS apps with other apps so suit their needs. This means if one of the applications is missing a specific feature your business needs, you can find another app designed for that specific feature and use both services.
Is it safe?
Organizations often cite data security concerns as reasons for not adopting SaaS. Will the company’s data be safe? Who will own such data? What if the SaaS vendor’s business goes kaput?
These are all valid concerns. But you should know that the average SaaS vendor invests more in cybersecurity, backup tech, and maintenance than the typical small- or medium-sized business. This is the vendor’s line of business, and they can’t afford to lose their clients’ trust. Moreover, they’re subjected to strict security audits, especially those that are covered by data regulations like HIPAA.
Additionally, when your organization takes on a SaaS vendor, both parties sign a service level agreement (SLA). This SLA has clauses specifying who owns the data inputted into a program and the output produced by the program, and the vendor’s obligation to grant you access to your data even if they suffer economic setbacks or business failures.
For more information on SaaS, send us a message today. We’ll help you determine if utilizing SaaS is best for your business.