Software as a Service

Organizations are continuing the trend of turning to cloud hosting for a variety of business solutions. The purposes for utilizing the cloud and the struggles with implementing it are relatively common across businesses. Among the models of cloud computing available to companies, many invest in Software as a Service (Saas) for accessing applications. Cloud software can be found for nearly any enterprise function needed for a company.

Reasons to Implement

Having applications deployed via hosting in a cloud environment means users can access programs from nearly any computer or location. This creates flexibility for a company and can make it easier for employees to be mobile. With globalization of businesses today, mobility is crucial.

For many businesses, cost savings are a factor in moving to a SaaS solution. When using cloud services, IT departments save on infrastructure costs. Depending on the company, these amounts can be significant. The scalability of the solution means only paying for services and hardware that are necessary.

Ease of upgrading presents another benefit of implementing SaaS. With software residing on a cloud platform, upgrades occur without disruption of business computers or servers. Users might have maintenance windows in which programs are briefly unavailable, but that is typically the extent of the inconvenience.

Common Difficulties

With Software as a Service having been adopted by a growing number of organizations, a few common areas of difficulty have become known. Luckily, this also gives companies opportunities to avoid some hurdles experienced by early adopters. Integration of data, for instance, is an issue some businesses must work to overcome. It is an area more businesses now know will need some attention and forethought.

Some organizations worry about version control with software. When using Software as a Service, the provider typically decides when to upgrade and to which versions. Reviewing upgrade schedules and service options when preparing an agreement can help put organizations at ease.

Types of Applications

Programs of many different types may be deployed via cloud hosting. Modules for some specific business functions, however, are particularly common. These types of modules are likely to be found in a broad number of implementations:

  • Customer relationship management
  • Business analytics
  • Financial components
  • Marketing and sales

Cloud computing for software solutions will gain even further traction as more organizations begin to rely on geographically diverse vendors, customers and employees. The need to be mobile creates a market demand for remote access to software and data. Cloud software hosting provides a natural solution for that need.