SaaS now essential for business operations

Infrastructure is often costly to operate, whether it's a small-scale server in a small business designed to handle storage or a data centre run by an organisation to operate customer services.

There's no denying that it's better for a company to circumvent these high costs, especially if this can be achieved without sacrificing security or control over services.

Software as a Service (SaaS) is the answer, and it represents one of the bigger shifts in IT operations for an organisation. It involves a transition from the traditional model of onsite hardware and software to services run by a provider offsite.

It's now time for organisations of all sizes to consider this digital transition, and the best way to do so effectively.

What is SaaS?

SaaS is a truly a significant shift away from traditional software management, and involves businesses licensing software through a subscription system. This means there are no high capital costs and staff access the software through a web browser.

In turn, this makes scaling far easier, and businesses can simply request support from a provider to add further users. Following a brief call, the provider can increase a client's allocation, almost instantly.

Similar terms grouped under the "as a service" title include infrastructure as a service (IaaS) and platform as a service (PaaS).

A digital transition

Moving to SaaS means greater cost savings in the IT department, further agility and a renewed focus on innovation. A Gartner survey released on 25 November highlighted these benefits, polling respondents from a number of countries.

"The most commonly cited reasons the survey found for deploying SaaS were for development and testing production/mission-critical workloads," said Joanne Correia, a research vice president at Gartner.

She explained that while early SaaS adoption focused on small pilot projects (essentially "testing the ropes"), recent projects are on a far larger scale.

"Today, the projects are mission-critical and production grade. This is an affirmation that more businesses are comfortable with cloud deployments."

The Gartner study explained CIOs are using the cloud to create a modern IT environment, one focused on innovation. Business leaders, on the other hand, see the cloud as way solely to save costs. In these instances, they're overlooking some of the more pertinent strategic benefits offered by this transition.

Businesses will have to assess whether the SaaS model is the best possible option to both drive innovation and bring down IT costs.

Managing the change effectively

Moving to SaaS is substantial business IT shift – but there's no denying the necessity of doing so. Of course, to handle the transition without large disruption to business operations it can be a good idea to consider using a proven change management framework such as PRINCE2.

This methodology, which was designed by the UK government and has now been in use for several decades, can be utilised by companies of all sizes and for a large number of projects.

If a business is hosting a tradeshow, the framework provides a set of proven guidelines to ensure all objectives are met over the course of the event. Likewise, when moving to SaaS, PRINCE2 establishes a strong support structure that ensures there are no oversights.

It's easy to get started with this methodology, and training in the framework often means any future projects within the business are in good hands.

ALC Training is a leading provider of project management courses, like PRINCE2 and other renowned frameworks. Get in touch with us today if you'd like to ensure you start projects on the right footing.