As organizations continue to adopt outsourced models for automating critical business processes, SaaS is becoming more attractive for many different types of service providers as well as Independent software vendors (ISVs).
Under this model, software features can be customized by the customer or the user based on their specific industry, work environment, or other norms, the features can be easily enabled or disabled as per convenience.
Following compelling business drivers are making SaaS delivery a viable alternative to traditional licensed based product or application delivery:
- Lower cost of ownership of software
- Flexibility to change usage commitments as business circumstances change
- Economically appealing business cases
- Quicker roll outs
- Accurately their ongoing expenses with IT budgets being tightened & assessed for better return on investment (ROI)
Software-as-a-service is undergoing a fundamental shift in how software is acquired, used and paid for. Emerging SaaS models and offerings are taking the SaaS concept far beyond first-generation application functionality and deployment, and into mission-critical business operations for large and small firms.
Software as a service delivery has two major categories:
- Line-of-business services, offered to enterprises and organizations of all sizes:
Line-of-business services are often large, customizable business solutions aimed at facilitating business processes such as finances, supply-chain management, and customer relations. These services are typically sold to customers on a subscription-basis
- Consumer-oriented services, offered to the general public:
Consumer-oriented services are sometimes sold on a subscription-basis, but are often provided to consumers at no cost, and are supported by advertising
Be it business-to-business (B2B) or business-to-consumer (B2C) focus, e-Zest understands the complexities of developing and delivering Software as a Service (SaaS) in a multi-customer environment.
Moving from offering on-premise software to software as a service requires software vendors to shift their thinking in three interrelated areas: in the business model, in the application architecture, and in the operational structures. Considering this, e-Zest’s SaaS consulting services focus on the following:
- Business model consulting:
Selling SaaS is like selling mobile phone ring tones, or downloadable music-it should be possible for a customer to visit website, subscribe to service, pay with a credit card, customize the service, and begin using it, all without human intervention on the part of the vendor. This doesn’t mean eliminating more personal approach for larger customers with more extensive needs.
Changing business model could involve one or more of the following:
- Shifting the ‘ownership’ of the software from the customer to an external provider
- Reallocating responsibility for the technology infrastructure and management—that is, hardware and professional services – from the customer to the provider
- Reducing the cost of providing software services, through specialization and economy of scale
- Targeting smaller businesses, by reducing the minimum cost at which software can be sold
Realizing the benefits of SaaS requires shifts in thinking on the part of both the provider and the customer, and it’s up to the provider to help the customer make this shift.
e-Zest’s SaaS business consulting team can help you in devising innovative business models and educating customers in making business and delivery model shift.
- SaaS application architecture consulting:
A well-designed SaaS application is scalable, secure, multi-renter-efficient, and configurable.
It means maximizing concurrency, and using application resources more efficiently
It is an architecture that maximizes the sharing of resources across renter, but that is still able to differentiate data belonging to different customers
SaaS application architecture requires ensuring that the task of configuring applications is simple and easy for the customers, without incurring extra development or operation costs for each configuration
The nature of SaaS makes security both a paramount concern for customers, and a high priority for application architects. Along with application data security, managing authentication and authorization aspects are the key architecture drivers from SaaS application point of view
e-Zest understands these application architecture drivers and can help you in making critical architecture trade-off decisions which can have long term impact on technology and business scalability.
e-Zest has experience in business model and architecture consulting architecting and deploying Software as a Service (SaaS) applications for its customers across the globe. Best practices identified by our expert architects have helped customers successfully architect and deploy robust service oriented solutions.
You could refer e-Zest’s case study section on SaaS based ERP System where we have documented how e-Zest provided business model and architecture consulting services along with application development and deployment services.