When the Software as a Service market first took shape, it was the province of applications specifically designed for a cloud platform. As SaaS adoption grew, software providers of all sizes launched cloud versions of their on-premises solutions and developed new products from the ground up.
Today, SaaS models run the gamut, from cloud-native solutions to client/server software relocated to a cloud platform, and the cloud is a flourishing software services delivery vehicle: Forrester predicts that SaaS revenues will hit $106 billion in 2016, while IDC estimates SaaS public cloud spending will reach $82.7 billion by 2018. Meanwhile, SaaS enterprise applications will generate $67 billion in revenues by 2018, according to Apps Run the World, and Cisco’s research shows that by 2018, 59 percent of total cloud workloads will be SaaS. Any commercial on-premises application is now available as a service in some form, and an increasing number of new applications are being created in the cloud.
Among SaaS deployments, productivity software is second only to email, according to CDW’s 2015 Cloud 401 report. More than 30 percent of the IT professionals CDW surveyed had deployed these business-critical applications (such as those bundled in Microsoft Office 365) in the cloud.
Indeed, productivity is often a driver of SaaS adoption. Because the cloud provider performs support and maintenance as part of the subscription fee, IT staff members aren’t saddled with overseeing SaaS servers, and client access is browser-based. Meanwhile, storage headaches drop, as data is housed in the provider’s data center.
IT teams also don’t have to worry about lengthy application deployment schedules, and the provider performs all upgrades. Users seamlessly get the most current software versions, with their new features and functionality, and stay productive because the IT team doesn’t have to install new versions. This also frees up IT administrators to provide quality training on new feature sets to ensure users get the most from productivity suites.
Further, SaaS pricing is subscription-based, making it an operational rather than a capital expense. Organizations will always have the latest software version, and they can easily pilot new SaaS applications without committing capital resources. As needed, IT teams can turn a positive test run into a strong business case for full deployment.
For more information on how SaaS impacts productivity and more, read the white paper “Achieving Prolific Productivity with SaaS.”