SAAS, also known as Software as a Service, is a cloud-based software distribution model that lets users access applications via an internet browser. It is becoming more and more popular among business owners and startups that are now seeing its advantages over traditional on-premise applications.
The unique delivery model gives SAAS applications plenty of benefits that on-premise software cannot provide. Users don’t have to go through the process of installing the software and setting it up. It is extremely easy to access because all you need is a browser and an internet connection.
You also don’t have to pay for the license just to use the product, like you typically would with traditional software. Instead, you “rent” the service and pay for it on a subscription basis. The SAAS provider is also in charge of maintaining, updating, and upgrading the software, so you don’t have to worry about it.
Here we will talk about SAAS enablement: what it is and what it entails.
SAAS enablement, also known as SAAS implementation, refers to the tasks that have to be completed in order to successfully enable a SAAS offering in a cloud computing environment. SAAS enablement can be done through a self service provisioning system for simple applications, particularly those that are made available via public clouds.
If the SAAS offering is designed for private enterprise use, the independent software vendor or ISV will have to provide hands-on configuration in order for SAAS enablement to occur.
SAAS enablement in a private cloud can be either complex or simple. It really depends on the scope of the different elements that are to be included in the configuration. This includes workflows, set-up data, business processes, user roles and responsibilities, meta data, etc.
ISVs can create configuration templates that can be reused to configure common elements across multiple implementations. This way, they can also increase their profit margins while implementing SAAS solutions.
There are no specific standards for SAAS enablement. However, there are a few key considerations that ISVs need to take into account, especially when planning an implementation for a SAAS application.
For example: data security. ISVs need to adequately address data security during the implementation phase of any SAAS offering. This is a primary concern for many clients. They are typically weary of having their enterprise data stored off premise, so SAAS providers need to be able to assure them that their data is protected.
ISVs should incorporate security measures into their implementations to the fullest degree possible. This includes managing user identity and access; data privacy; data ownership; compliance; and security patch management.
Effective SAAS solutions are scalable and configurable. SAAS enablement should involve ensuring that SAAS offerings can provide different subscription plans that can cater to a company’s growing needs. This ensures that increases in demand for the SAAS offering can be successfully managed without changes to the software architecture.
Another thing to consider is user training for SAAS applications. ISVs should discuss what training options will be made available to users and how it will be implemented. A lack of user training for certain SAAS offerings can prevent them from using it to its fullest. This can even lead to delayed revenue recognition for the SAAS services being delivered if a pay-as-you-go billing model is being used.
By making good decisions early on, ISVs can avoid some of the most common pitfalls SAAS providers experience during enablement. It can also help clients avoid common problems as they scale up their businesses. This is why SAAS enablement plays a very important role. Learning how to consider performance and availability agreements can help providers design their cloud architecture to meet or exceed their targets.