While you may not have heard of SaaS before, there is a very good chance you are using it now, especially if you are working in a modern business. If it is indeed something new to you, it pays off to learn what exactly you are utilizing. Here’s a quick primer on what exactly SaaS is, what it lets you do, and how to start incorporating it into your operations today.
To start, SaaS stands for Software as a Service, one of three main types of cloud computing, along with infrastructure as a service (IaaS) and platform as a service (PaaS). Some of the most common types of SaaS that you may be using without knowing include email, calendars, and office tools like Microsoft Office 365. The core difference between SaaS and traditional software is that one is updated and used online, with files saved in the cloud rather than physically installed and saved on a computer. In addition, as opposed to formally purchasing a package, most SaaS programs use a subscription model. You pay on a monthly basis, and generally have the freedom to stop service whenever you like.
Many modern cloud suites will provide a complete set of software that your business can pick and choose to use as needed. Some categories where this is possible include:
- Human relations
- Supply chain
- Customer service
- Project management
- Sales management
- Transportation management
Clearly, SaaS is versatile, both in its application and business model. However, there are many other benefits to choosing SaaS over a traditional set of software that you install on a computer that sometimes gets overlooked.
What SaaS Allows You To Do.
Perhaps the most prominent benefit of SaaS is that it enables you to use software regardless of location. Any time, any location, and often from various devices, from smartphones to desktops to tablets. Compare this to software that is often limited to a small lineup of devices by design. In addition, if you only need a piece of software for one project or a short period, you can subscribe then unsubscribe for a fraction of buying the software outright. In addition, there are other added conveniences like automatic updates and ready access to scalability (more on that later).
Of course, one cannot neglect the bottom line when it comes to something as important as business software. SaaS provides many potential savings in this area as well. For example, there are no hardware costs, as the cloud provider provides processing power. This could be invaluable if you are running programs that are intensive, but lack the funds to buy top-end computers.
Picking Your SaaS Services.
With all these things in mind, it’s easy to see the potential for SaaS to improve your daily operations. The next thing to consider exactly what set of services meets your needs. The nice thing about SaaS compared to traditional software is that it lends itself better to trying out than others. Rather than download a trial version with limited access that doesn’t give you the full picture, budget a month to try things out, select only the parts of the suite that are relevant to you, and give it a try. If you don’t find things to your liking, simply move on.
In fact, depending on your needs, you may need these benefits on a higher scale. This makes services like ServiceAide’s Hyper SaaS extremely useful. Not only do you have means to scale up your software usage far quicker than with any physical software, the burden of running these are on the cloud, not on your systems. If you fully plan on investing in SaaS for your business, it may be worth it to think ahead. Try and buy to match the potential load you will be taking on in the future rather than immediate concerns. This is far more cost effective when you use SaaS. The same applies to support. Take advantage of the fact that support professionals can work through one platform to help you in multiple areas. Some companies even go to the extent that they work to get their own software turned into SaaS, just for the benefits we mentioned before.
SaaS is something already changing the way we use computers, but many aren’t taking full advantage of this useful technology. By weighing your options and choosing wisely, you can take advantage of added flexibility with lower cost and resource expenditures.