Traditional Install VS SaaS

I thought this discussion could spark up an interesting debate. Traditional Install Vs SaaS? Let’s look at some of the benefits and drawbacks for both.

Traditional Installation Advantages

Software that is installed on the client’s own server entails a great deal of user buy-in and commitment. Once the client-installed software is deployed, users experience many advantages such as:

Configurability. Software installed on the premises provides users with greater ability to tailor functionality to their unique business needs. However, customisation costs usally occur.

Standardization of business practices. A traditional software installation encourages companies to re-evaluate their existing processes to enforce consistency enterprise-wide.

Ownership and control. The client is in charge of ensuring their system requirements and technology is up to par and can manage their application as they see fit.

Traditional Installation Challenges

Before committing to software installed on the premises, users should be aware of the following challenges:

Time intensive. A traditional installation is more complex than aSaaS solution and may take several weeks or months to implement.

Requires team of dedicated resources. As the software is kept on the client’s own system, IT specialists must manage their own upgrades and ongoing maintenance.

More costly/requires larger budget. The complexity of a clientinstalled system means that more resources and time are invested driving up costs.

SaaS Challenges

As Software as a Service is a newer option, many people are reluctant to diverge from client-installed software. According to a 2007 survey conducted by the International Association for Contract and Commercial Management (IACCM) about the benefits and challenges of SaaS, a few negative perceptions about SaaS include:

Loss of control. Many people (76%) believe that they relinquish control when dealing with a SaaS vendor—this is unfounded. While the vendor takes care of the system requirements, customers are free to leave if they are unsatisfied in any way with the SaaS provider; this encourages the provider to work harder to keep users happy.

Weak data protection. About 60% of respondents are worried about weak security measures. Connect 2 Field uses the latest technology along with 128 SSL data encryption to ensure sensitive data is protected.

Unreliability. A common misconception is that SaaS provides intermittent service. In reality,  Connect 2 Field servers have 99.9% uptime through extensive network redundancy.

SaaS Advantages

Software as a Service (SaaS) is delivered as a service over the internet; as such there are several benefits users enjoy with this method including:

No start-up costs. The SaaS provider bears the costs of the hardware, maintenance and technology.

Quick deployment and accessibility. Users can begin using the application almost immediately since there is no software or hardware to install. The application can be accessed remotely so long as there is an internet connection and web browser.

Quick return on investment (ROI). According to the Aberdeen Group, SaaS users benefit from a ROI that is 2-4 times quicker than traditionally installed software.

IT budget and resources are freed up. With less money required on the software, money can be invested in other projects.

Little to no commitment. Since SaaS is available on a subscription basis, customers can choose to renew or cancel their terms without major repercussions.

With less risk and flexibility to move, I believe every company should move all core applications to a SaaS platform, whether in a private cloud or public.

Feel free to add you own opinion below.

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