Software as a Service (SaaS) is a software licensing and delivery model that licenses software on a subscription basis rather than being sold as a perpetual license at an up-front cost. This model has a typically lower setup cost than the traditional software, and this makes it a more attractive option for most companies being that subscribers pay only for features they use. Organisations can integrate SaaS applications with other software using APIs and plugins.
The SaaS Advantage
There is no need for organizations to host their own applications. Instead they can leverage on SaaS applications to deliver the infrastructure they need to support their applications while they focus on their business operations. With flexible subscription-based plans, automatic updates as well as scalability offered by SaaS, it's adoption is well justified.
Something to keep in mind
SaaS providers might sometimes experience service disruptions, security breaches and other internal software changes that will have a profound effect on the customer or end-user. It is advised that customers or end-users of SaaS products should review their SaaS provider's service-level agreement in order to make sure that it is well enforced.
The SaaS architecture takes two forms
This type of software addresses a specific industry need. An inventory management software designed for real estate companies is classified as Vertical SaaS.
This type of software rather than addressing a specific industry, addresses a software category across industries. A sales management application is classified as Horizontal SaaS.
Characteristics of SaaS
- Configuration and customisation
SaaS applications offers a certain level of flexibility to customers. It allows the customer to set up features peculiar to their business.
- Accelerated delivery due to Agile methodology commonly adopted
SaaS applications are more frequently updated than the traditional software (A typical SaaS application will usually receive weekly and monthly updates). Most SaaS application providers adopt Agile as their preferred style of software development due to the need to deliver software quickly and rapidly.
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