We’ve all heard the rambling, senseless, “why-should-we-use-a-server-based-application” speech from management at one time or another. Okay, okay—maybe that’s just the IT guys, who have nothing better to do with their time than scare the bejesus out of everyone every time they think about moving to the “cloud.” But, let’s face it; nobody knows why companies use SaaS. Or do they?
Ten years ago, if you were looking to put your company online using the Internet, there were many scary options out there. You’d have to buy a server. Get the server set up. Get the people in your organization to learn all the new technologies. Secure the bandwidth capacity and acquire an Internet connection. And the list goes on. It wasn’t simple. But, back then, that’s the way it was. Other than that, you could pay a service provider your hard-earned money. And let them sweat out the details, and you might get lucky. Don’t count on it, though. Wait, and it might work.
Fast forward to today:
Very few companies still own their own dedicated servers, at least not in large part. But we still have some people who spend their days figuring out how to get it done any way they can. Some do well. Most don’t. It’s the nature of the beast. SaaS is a great way to get your company online. Here’s why.
Five years ago, the on-demand cloud option was, well, cloudy. It was relatively new, there were many questions with all the unknowns, and nobody had much experience with it. Most service providers didn’t touch SaaS with a ten-foot pole. Frankly, the cloud had a “cool” factor to it that made you like it. Okay, more money. In this case, better than nothing. But still, if you are strapped for money, too bad.
Five years after the fact:
Things have changed a lot. And honestly, a lot of it has to do with the growing revenue and profits of companies using SaaS for their software solutions. It’s kind of like asking why you use a microwave. It helps out, but is it because it’s cleaner, etc.? Too short to suddenly go into that whole history. But the bottom line is, a lot of companies use SaaS for good reasons. You might even be using a SaaS solution right now.
How do you use SaaS at your company?
How would you know, though? Are you sitting on a cloud? Are you really in the dark? If you are, it’s time to start searching for the light switch.
Companies tend to agree that SaaS is a pretty simple way to go for a software solution. The benefits of SaaS are many, and it’s not all just about saving money.
There’s a transition going on, and it’s time to make the move. But, remember, once you take the plunge, you never go back.
In this day and age, most companies are choosing to use Software as a Service instead of buying software. This is a good thing. Companies are slowly learning that they don’t need to reinvent the wheel. Instead, they can use an existing product, part of a framework, and leverage it. This has seen a lot of startups like Salesforce, Avaza, Amazon, and many others gain popularity for their SaaS model since most startups are looking to produce something of value without having to spend a ton of money upfront.
Now that we’ve discussed all the things SaaS does well, it’s time to discuss the good reasons businesses turn to SaaS.
As we all would probably agree, we need a lot less data storage and data processing these days. Thanks to data storage and processing innovations SaaS provides, the ability to scale up or down. There’s no need to worry about throwing out a keyboard server, chucking out an old server, or worse. And having to wait for your existing services to transition to the new ones.
#2. Improved Customer Service:
SaaS lets customer service representatives across the world have a finger on the pulse of the customer. The power of access to information for customer service representatives is invaluable. Previous business models had all sorts of limitations when it came to customer service. Translation and localization delays, simple database design, and information access limitations make things a lot easier for a customer service representative.
#3. No need for dedicated employees:
Where to start with this one.
In case you haven’t heard it before, SaaS eliminates the need for human resources in almost every aspect. Powering a SaaS solution is handled by computers instead of human resources. And the technology is far, far cheaper. After all, computers only require a few dollars and a single person to maintain. It’s a lot simpler than having to pay for full-time employees or having them work overtime. Or even for the option to replace them if they refuse to work extra hours for the late-night or weekend slacker. What was most disruptive in SaaS, however, is the ability to replace systems for staff. Just a few clicks on a keyboard and a company can power a new system. All from a secure remote computer.
#4. Easier upgrade:
This is a big one. It’s a lot easier to upgrade a software system using SaaS. Why? Because there are not as many updates to install. The upgrades are limited, secure, done remotely, and inexpensive. It allows departments and tech support people to focus on making customers happy instead of fixing on their own.
#5. Homegrown talent:
Think about all the qualified IT talent out there? This is an easy talent to find, and there’s a lot of it out there. Wouldn’t it be great to scale up all the time?
There’s indeed a lot of talent in the industry, but it’s expensive, and it’s going to take a lot longer to train and implement the new system. You’ll still need systems in place that some companies don’t have.
The data security and integrity locks in place by SaaS are just light years ahead of anything else in the industry. Sure, SaaS security is still in its infancy, but it’s certainly managing to keep up with the rapidly-changing landscape of security issues.
The fact that you can turn a SaaS solution on and off, whereas you needed it, is huge. Adaptability is a great reason to go with a SaaS solution.
In the beginning, homegrown IT makes it hard to expand quickly. This robs you of the ability to grow quickly. With a SaaS solution, your most innovative and visionary people can focus on developing the next big thing instead of coming up with ways to engineer solutions to problems that already have solutions. And somewhere, in the corner of your enterprise, that solution is waiting.
Get this: we require organizations with homegrown IT systems to have full-time support for the systems that sit outside the SaaS. In most cases, you have to pay employees full-time just to run on-site support. With SaaS, you have to pay for it all from a remote computer. Depending on the specific solution you have, numerous support options exist.
#10. The opportunity:
The opportunity to run cloud-based solutions are toys compared to running traditional solutions. The benefits of cost outperform even what your recruiters say. The reason being they aren’t privy to the in-depth knowledge of what’s involved with most business IT solutions.
Ten years from now, the cloud will be faster. But at a greater cost. The cloud will be cheaper but at a slower speed. People will still argue about the cloud, and many will still use the old server model. But for how much longer?
SaaS may not be perfect. But once it attains a certain level of popularity, the world will have to accept it. And the world is getting used to it right now.