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Software as a Service - the what, the how and the why

Whether you’re a small business owner or heading up a department of 100 coworkers, managing the way you get work done is a constant challenge. If you haven’t heard the term Software as a Service (also known as SaaS), then keep reading.

Put simply, SaaS is a form of software licensing, on a subscription basis. Hosted in one place on the provider’s end, this means that you can avoid installation and spend more time on doing what you love.

Its alternative term, ‘on-demand software’, tells it like it is. Much like renting a product, SaaS makes it easier to get the ball rolling. Users who subscribe to the service pay to use its features online, with what they need stored in the cloud. Say goodbye to redundant, desktop munching folders and files!

Commonly associated terms include CRM (Customer Relationship Management), Platform as a Service, cloud applications and more. Some SaaS household names include Salesforce, Zendesk, Dropbox, Adobe Creative Cloud and Atlassian’s project management software, JIRA.

Even Gmail is a SaaS example; when you use it, you don’t host your own email server. As a user, you access it via your browser (which is the ‘client’ - or how your computer gets information from the web server). Social networking favourites Twitter and LinkedIn are sometimes debated as SaaS, but considering this Gmail definition, the possibilities are endless.

Why would a SaaS solution potentially be your new best friend at work? Paying as you go (often on a month-by-month basis), easy integration into your workplace and workflow, scalability, and the opportunity to work anywhere. Not to mention the company you’re subscribing to being responsible for all the upgrades and security.

Complex tasks such as tracking your brand and keeping up with best practice for your business are often most simple with services like these. Start having a play today!

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