Software as a service (saas, pronounced as sæs or sɑs, is also known as “on-demand software” provided by software companies. SaaS helps us to host software and associated data on the cloud. Users can access SaaS using a thin client via browser. SaaS is used in many business applications like Management software, Development software, DBMS software, Office & Messaging software, Gamification, customer relationship management (CRM), Virtualization, accounting, collaboration, management information systems (MIS), invoicing, enterprise resource planning (ERP), human resource management (HRM), content management (CM) and service desk management. According to an Information Week survey, Salesforce.com is the most popular among companies using SaaS technology followed by Google, Microsoft, Oracle, SAP and more.
SaaS is used as a technology solution for all sorts of industries. Gartner Group estimate showed, SaaS sales in 2010 reached $10 billion, and then there was $12.1bn increase in 2011. Gartner Group estimates that SaaS revenue will be more than double its 2010 numbers by 2015 and reach a projected $21.3bn. Customer relationship management (CRM) continues to be the largest market for SaaS.
The term “software as a service” (SaaS) is being considered as a part of cloud computing nomenclature, along with platform as a service (PaaS), desktop as a service (DaaS), infrastructure as a service (IaaS), information technology management as a service (ITMaaS) and backend as a service (BaaS).
The outcome of cost-cutting approach is what we know as Software as a Service, abbreviated as SaaS Technology. Often denoted as Cloud Computing, SaaS is software setting where the applications are entertained by a third party or vendor and distributed to the users via internet using pay-as-you-go model. Since all kinds of businesses, whether it is small or big has access to Internet, they are increasingly moving to this Software Distribution Model. Some advantages relating to this technology can be counted as its unconditional flexibility where you pay for whatever you have used and this way you save a lot. As opposed to traditional model of software allocation; where one needs to invest in the original software; the SaaS Software on Demand model enables you to pay by minutes or hours used. Moreover, without any hassle of installing and managing the software, the user can enjoy uninterrupted service with only access to World Wide Web. According to an Information Week survey, Salesforce.com is the most popular among companies using SaaS technology followed by Google, Microsoft, Oracle, Sap and more.
Fundamentally designed for Customer Relationship Management, SaaS Technology also validated its performance in CCC i.e. Content, Communication and Collaboration. High-on-the-trend Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) also made use of the same SaaS landscape simultaneously zero-downing the need for installing, running and managing the applications on the company in-house system. Global accessibility with enriched user compatibility and simpler software administration makes site operation and data-analysis smooth like butter. This not only gives the big-shots to expand their business domain but new players to enter into the market.
The subscription-based pricing design not only offers you great flexibility but a complete solution to software support and maintenance also. This further helps you to prune the operational costs and churn out 100% efficiency at the same time. With no requirement of spending a big fortune on hardware and software licenses the technology holds an elastic approach of enlarging and decreasing the requirements as per the organizational needs. Though SaaS is synonymous with easier implementation, the never-ending possibilities of technical upgrades cannot be overlooked. The Software as a Service has an answer to this also. The congruous nature of the program doesn’t require new appointments and can easily be handled by an existing person without much effort.
While SaaS can be exploited to its 100% use across all segments, it’s important to note that there are some risks involved too. Since a vendor is responsible for hosting the applications and has complete access to the company data, the major issue that arises is of data security. Another problem is of data integration. Enlarged server down-time and long-term costs can be other botherations over the time. It’s also not necessary that the companies get everything they ask for in a SaaS package. Hence the rightful thing is to keep a check on what’s new in the market and upgrade the software likewise.
Making it competent enough in the ever-evolving digital world and putting it to full use can make you capitalize on the profits and beat those unconventional costs involved in setting up on-premises software. The ease of access to all the applications has also lead to the overall strategic development of the big as well as small organizations as they get better productivity at reduced costs.