Does the future of the industry necessarily require SaaS-type software? Software as a service” is of interest to many companies, while others are more reserved about these solutions.

SaaS increasingly covers more and more services and functional areas of the industry

In 2014-2015, SaaS publishers recorded strong growth in revenues, particularly in the United States where a 55% increase was noted by Opexengine and the Software and Information Industry Association (SIAA). In France, Tech In France (formerly AFDEL – Association française des éditeurs de logiciels et solutions internet) reports that the revenues of the top 20 French SaaS vendors increased by more than 15% in 2014 compared to the previous year.

These figures therefore show that SaaS is finding a real resonance with companies and that the promises made by these solutions seem to respond advantageously to very specific needs in the functional areas of the industry.

Let us briefly recall what SaaS (software as a service) is. These are software solutions based on resources installed on remote servers, not on the user’s machine. In other words, the software is consumed as a service hosted by a specialized supplier.

Unlike on-premise software, which must be installed on the company’s servers, SaaS does not require the user to purchase a user license. On the other hand, the service is generally rented in the form of a monthly, annual or pay-per-use subscription.

In industry, software as a service is constantly expanding its scope. The main areas they cover are contact management, agenda sharing, remote conferencing solutions, messaging, business applications and document management. In France, Idylis is a pioneer in this sector. Today, Sage, Oodrive, Netside Planning and Cap Compta offer ever more sophisticated SaaS solutions adapted to technological and organizational changes.

A profitable solution for some, a risk for others

On the question of the place and usefulness of SaaS in the industry of the future, opinions are somewhat divided. While it is true that services of this type have a number of advantages, they are not without risk.

First of all, SaaS supporters praise the economic virtues of such a choice. Renting and installing externally hosted software is cheaper than buying a license. The acquisition and maintenance costs of the solution are considerably reduced, as are the costs related to electricity consumption, since the servers, which are generally energy-intensive, are not borne by the company.

The practicality of such an option is also highlighted. SaaS provides flexibility that traditional services do not provide, mainly in terms of speed of deployment. Software as a service is a product that is practically ready for use, requiring only a short implementation time.

Nevertheless, they raise the issue of security and confidentiality of data, as it is stored on the supplier’s servers. The risk of loss or leakage of confidential information scares critics of SaaS, but these fears can be tempered by the guarantees provided by service quality contracts, which are essential with this type of service.

Finally, it should be noted that the use of SaaS may make IT migration more difficult. Compatibility problems, for example, can occur when servers switch from one provider to another.

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Picomto is a web and mobile software solution for creating, managing, sharing, consulting and analyzing digital work instructions. Picomto is available in SaaS or On-Premises. Contact us to know more.

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