Nowadays, an increasing number of traditional software companies are switching to cloud-based and SaaS subscription models – and with good reason. As we see more companies take the leap, we’re gaining insight on the advantages of transitioning, which include: potential for faster revenue growth over time, increased agility, and more predictable revenue. But aside from witnessing the advantages of switching to the subscription model, we can learn from these other companies and gain valuable best practices for other software companies looking to take the leap.
If you are looking to explore the possibilities of delivering your products in a SaaS model, embracing the cloud will be a key tenet of your go-forward approach. In this article we will take you through six reasons and benefits why transitioning to the cloud is essential to delivering your products through a SaaS model.
- What is Cloud-based Software?
Cloud software shifts components of your IT infrastructure and processes out of your physical office and into a network of physical and virtual servers around the world – almost always accessed through the internet. This simple change presents businesses with a number of valuable benefits, including:
– Improved productivity and collaboration through lightning-fast file sync and sharing
– Worldwide accessibility for any user on any device who has access permissions
– Seamless scalability without the need for space-occupying storage devices
– Endless flexibility with storage, backup, and recovery customizations
– Built-in protection from data loss due to diversified storage locations
Capitalizing on these benefits, businesses – particularly SMBs – are taking advantage of the cloud-based software from the countless SaaS companies flooding the market. Cloud backup software, cloud storage, cloud customer relationship management (CRM), cloud content management system (CMS), and countless other services now offer businesses the agility, flexibility, and ease-of-use they need to stay competitive.
Good examples of cloud SaaS solutions that many businesses have come to trust are:
- Microsoft 365
Microsoft 365 is used by 53 percent of businesses. With this solution, you gain access to the same high-quality productivity applications you’re familiar with (Word, Excel, Powerpoint, etc.), while enjoying the accessibility found only through cloud software. With the Microsoft 365 you have the flexibility to back up and protect this data exactly where and how you want.
- Google Workspace
Google Workspace allows businesses to create, manage, and store data from a wide array of different applications through an easy-to-use interface that a growing number of businesses are adopting.
The ServiceNow platform delivers a wide range of cloud software solutions including everything from IT operations management and security operations to application development and HR services. Many of their cloud services are completely automated to streamline entire workflows.
- Benefits of SaaS Solutions
1. Easy to implement
SaaS is already installed and configured in a cloud, so you don’t have to worry about setting up the infrastructure (which can get complicated). Implementation typically only involves registering and either downloading a web browser extension or the application to your computer.
Adopting SaaS means you don’t have to build out your own infrastructure and software. Beyond the implementation stage, SaaS is easy for updates. SaaS providers manage hardware and software updates, leaving you with a more seamless experience.
2. Reduced administration time and costs
SaaS providers typically deal with infrastructure and management allowing their customers to focus on their core business. They control the security with dedicated professionals. The cloud offers endless scalability, which is key in a data-driven world. And reliability is proven to be higher with the availability of much better disaster recovery.
When purchasing a perpetual based licensing model, organisations are required to pay a costly upfront sum, however SaaS models reduce initial upfront expenses by spreading the costs out over a subscription fee which can be paid monthly or annually for example.
By implementing a cloud-based SaaS platform, organisations can cut down on the expenses it would usually incur on updating legacy-based systems and infrastructure, as well as reduce the costs associated with operational costs. With continual monitoring and updating, your applications will run smoothly, removing the need for unexpected support fees as well as storage and resource costs.
3. Managed Service and Support
SaaS offerings are fully managed by a third party provider, ultimately reducing the hassle for an organisation to manage if overseeing in-house. Managed SaaS providers operate everything for you including hosting, support, upgrades and licencing.
This reduces the stress over monitoring hardware systems and worrying about installing the latest versions of software updates. A managed service ensures a smooth transition, all carried out for you, removing the strain to manage on your own environment. A managed service ensures a smooth transition, all carried out for you, removing the strain to manage on your own environment. By having a managed service provider to handle this for you, your business can ensure an efficient service without any time-consuming disruptions.
SaaS platforms offer scalable usage based on the demands of your business, whether that’s adjusting the capacity for additional users or scaling back to reduce numbers. This gives your organisation the flexibility based on demand, allowing you to enhance the service as and when you need to, all in a simple, cost effective process. Scalability within SaaS subscription models greatly benefits businesses in terms of cost overheads as organisations will always have a clear idea of what predictable costs for both subscription and administration will be. As you scale, there is no requirement to invest in additional capacity for servers for example, you simply adjust your subscription fee.
In recent years, data protection and GDPR have become a vocal point with growing awareness around data. Organisations often feel reluctant when moving to a SaaS based model with concerns over who has access to their data and how it may be used. However, one of the most important factors when transitioning to a SaaS environment for any internal IT team is to reduce the burden of safeguarding your infrastructure. Of course, understandably you are relying and entrusting a third-party provider to look after your cloud estate, which many businesses would be concerned about. However, with SLA’s put in place, off site back up, deployment, security threats, transferal of data through to vulnerability testing all taken care of – transitioning should be a secure, efficient process.
Currently, cloud hosting services are built to address the privacy demands of our customers and help safeguard sensitive data. This hopefully ensures peace of mind for organisations and their customers that their data is secure and stored separately per customer.
6. Cross platform accessibility
A huge advantage of using a cloud based or SaaS platform is the access to services on almost any device, anytime, as long as you have access to the internet. This ensures instant availability to services, and information anytime, anywhere which ultimately boosts productivity and efficiency. Workforces who work remotely while out on the road, from home or across various sites will find this extremely beneficial and cost effective. Not only will this help reduce travel requirements and expenses, but it will also increase the ability to update information, respond to customers and increase communication amongst colleagues as and when required.
By transitioning to a SaaS based model, your business can benefit from increased revenue, greater agility and improved customer relationships. Managed SaaS services can help you achieve your business requirements as you grow without worrying about the technical requirements. Of course, the transition from perpetual to SaaS will be determined by an organisations’ requirements, business goals and buying behaviour. With technology enabling more processing power, storage and security updates, as well as SaaS based models offering competitive pricing, more organisations will start to put their trust in transitioning to Software as a Service.