SaaS seems like the perfect solution and is growing rapidly. It is ultimately the way that the industry is going. On average companies are using 16 SaaS apps today, up 33% from last year, with 73% of organisations saying nearly all (80%+) of their apps will be SaaS by 2020.

There are multiple advantages of using SaaS, revolving round convenience and reducing the effort for the end client. The disadvantages are mostly aligned with no longer having complete control and needing to change how the company manages software going forward.

Challenges:


  • Cost Control: Although compliance is no longer an issue, cost control and overspending is. It is very easy to over purchase and neglect to cancel subscriptions when they are no longer required.
  • Shadow IT: Implementations no longer have to follow the standard route and purchases can happen across the estate, bypassing Central IT and Procurement. This lack of visibility will hamper pricing optimisation.
  • Lack of Software Control: Typically, there is no choice about upgrades or using specific versions. There is usually limited customisation if any, available.
  • Connectivity: To use the software there needs to be access to the internet, which may not suit clients who need to travel or work from home; there cannot be a break in the connection. You can lose data if connectivity fails.
  • Speed: In general, SaaS applications are known to be slower than their on-premise equivalents.
  • Range & Features: SaaS applications may not have the same features as their on-premise applications. The functionality is often not as refined or as full. Many applications are still not available hosted.
  • Security & Data Concerns: Access management and the privacy of sensitive info is a major consideration.

Benefits:


  • Few upfront costs: The SaaS provider manages the IT infrastructure, so no device hardware purchase is required to develop, run or store the application.
  • Compliance: Subscriptions are the norm, meaning no purchase of costly perpetual licences. There is no issue regarding non-compliance.
  • Quick setup and deployment: Software is already set up and configured in the cloud.
  • Branding: Applications can often be altered to suit the needs and branding of the client.
  • Scalability: Additional storage, services and users can be set up quickly and on demand.
  • Upgrades: The providers deal with all hardware and software updates, deploying the upgrades centrally to the hosted applications. Nothing is required by the client. Also, the costs of updates are usually within the subscription cost.
  • Accessibility: Access is via an internet browser. This means the software is accessible from almost any device type, anywhere the internet is available.
  • Cost cutting: There is increased potential for cutting costs by looking at optimisation across the company, minimising the number of applications in use and being able to vary the number of subscriptions to suit the need. This gives a high level of flexibility to the business, even enabling them to change the applications they subscribe to.
  • Speed: There is a reduced time to value with improvements in employee comms and satisfaction.

As a result of SaaS, a new type of workplace is emerging. The traditional Central IT role is changing with 38% of companies already running >50% of apps as SaaS today. SaaS creates many benefits as listed above but it also creates new challenges for IT. To adapt to this new enterprise, IT must change the way it functions. IT needs to rethink its roles, responsibilities, processes and budgets, as well as how business unit IT, central IT, finance and procurement work together.


You can read the first and final part of this three-part series of blogs here:

Part 1: ‘What is SaaS?

Part 3: ‘SaaS – Controlling & Optimising Costs


For further information on how ITAMS can help your organisation with SaaS please download our
ITAMS_SaaS Service Overview.


Alternatively, you can contact us on: 03704 050508 or email your enquiry to info@itamsolutions.com