An explanation of industry terms that is a quick read, and knowledge base.
What is SaaS?
Software as a service (SaaS) provides applications via the Internet instead of a business installing and maintaining software on its own. With SaaS, organizations can access the necessary software online, which helps to free them from complex and costly software and hardware management. SaaS applications are also labeled “Web-based software,” or known as on-demand software and hosted software. These SaaS apps run on a provider’s servers, with provider-managed access, security, availability, and performance.
How does SaaS work?
SaaS relies on cloud-based delivery where the software provider either hosts the application and relevant data on private servers with separate databases, segmented networking, and virtualized computing resources. Other options include contracting with a cloud provider to host the application in the provider’s datacenter, with the application made accessible to devices with a network connection. On the financial side, companies save money by avoiding the setup, updates, and maintenance of the software. However, the client usually pays a subscription fee to access the software.
Why is SaaS?
SaaS has become a fundamental way many businesses handle data and software management, especially as cloud adoption has accelerated in the past few years. The SaaS industry has been growing rapidly over the past ten years, and leaders in the sector include Salesforce, Microsoft, and IBM.
Customer demand has driven SaaS strategy, including factors such as the pandemic and market volatility. Businesses are reprioritizing IT operations to focus on mitigating costs and optimizing budget expenditure within IT support, remote workforces, and a need for corporate resiliency.
Benefits of Public Cloud
SaaS customers don’t have to worry about investing in any hardware or software to run the applications they wish. The company simply requires an Internet connection and access to the desired service offered by the provider. Organizations no longer must rely on their own datacenters to install and run applications, which also avoids the need for software licensing, installation fees, and support costs.
Other benefits of SaaS include:
- Flexible budgeting – As customers subscribe to SaaS access, traditional costs are done away with, along with unexpected fees and hidden data processing costs. Recurring expenses can allow for more predictable budgeting. Plus, companies can end SaaS subscriptions at any time.
- Higher scalability – Cloud-based SaaS lets customers access more or fewer services as company requirements shift, on-demand.
- Easier accessibility – With a remote workforce on the rise, SaaS helps deliver apps to any Internet user no matter what device they’re on or where they’re working from.
- Greater customization – Most SaaS applications are easily customizable and can be seamlessly integrated with other business applications, especially if they’re delivered by a common provider.
Common use Cases for SaaS
Organizations are using SaaS across all departments and industry sectors. Common use cases include:
Disaster Recovery as a Service (DRaaS) – Disaster recovery is essential for any business aiming to survive in this modern era of cybersecurity, ransomware, and data breaches. Any downtime can be a huge revenue loss, not to mention customer loyalty. SaaS-based disaster recovery (DR) helps ensure a business can quickly recover and get back online in the event of a disaster. A SaaS, cloud-based redundant standby site can provide quick and easy failover that isn’t reliant on private infrastructure.
Backup as a Service (BaaS) – Companies that want to adhere to the IT rule of “3-2-1″—having 3 copies of data on 2 different media and 1 offsite—remains an optimal way to ensure the data is safe and secure. Restoring these backups from SaaS, cloud-based solutions is integral to this security and data management measure.
Hybrid Cloud – In whatever mix of public, private, and multi-cloud environments a company runs on, SaaS provides flexible solutions that can meet the specific needs of a business. A larger company might use a private or hybrid cloud solution to protect its private information. At the same time, smaller to mid-sized businesses might settle on a primarily public cloud for more straightforward, more streamlined options.
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