SaaS Company

Software as a Service (SaaS) is not new to organizations of any scale
and size. It has been helping businesses to be efficient and cost-effective.
Due to this reason, the service is increasingly getting popular among
businesses. If you are also a business that wants to get SaaS solutions then
here is the definitive guide for SaaS.

What is SaaS? Meaning and Definition

Software as a Service or SaaS can be simply defined as a service where
end users can get access to and use cloud-based applications through the
internet. With this facility, they don’t have to install and maintain software.
As these applications are configured on the service provider server, the
responsibility of security, availability and performance lies with the service

Various Names of SaaS

Software as a Service is also known with various names. Some of these
names are as follows:

  • Web-based software
  • On-demand software
  • Cloud-based software
  • Cloud application services
  • Hosted software
  • Subscriber
  • Rentware

Related Article – Managed IT Services Guide for Small and Medium Businesses

Major Characteristics of SaaS

A Software as a Service gets popular due to its characteristics. And as
a business or end-user, you might be interested in knowing these
characteristics in details. These are as follows:

Multi-tenancy Model

This is the kind of model in which all the user of the software uses a
single common infrastructure of codebase provided by the service provider. As
the software is maintained centrally, it allows more opportunities for
innovation for the service provider as the changes can be implemented easily.
Previously they have to maintain several versions of it.

Improved Accessibility 

SaaS is also well known for its
improved visibility. The users can access it from any networked device. At the
same time, it allows managing privilege, monitor data and guarantees that
everyone is seeing the same information. 

Automated Provisioning

The users of today want to access the SaaS applications quickly so they
look for features like quick provisioning. These SaaS applications are widely
used in business to business and business to consumer services where customers
want to access the services by using credentials. To meet these requirements,
software should offer automated provisioning. Most of the SaaS applications
feature automated provisioning.

Single Sign In

In the big enterprises, there is a large number of people and systems
and signing into every system to access applications take a lot of time. Most
of the enterprise organization looking for a system where applications can be
accessed with a single sign in. They prefer a service that allows multiple uses
with a single sign in. most software as a service uses SAML or OpenID to
provide this feature.

Flexible Infrastructure

Most of the time they use of SaaS is unpredictable. There are times when
it becomes too big while there are times it becomes so small.  So, its infrastructure should be flexible
enough to expand and shrink as per the requirements. Top SaaS companies deploy
monitoring agents in the servers that tell about the usage of applications.
There are well laid out procedures that help its infrastructure expand or sink
as per need.

Data Security

Data Security has been one of the most important concerns for businesses
these days. And it is one of the major concerns for the enterprises as the same
software is used by a large number of people. Here we must know that SaaS
providers put a lot of emphasis on data security and ensure that your data
can’t be accessed by an unauthorised user.

User Support

There are times when a user gets stuck in the middle of work and don’t
want to leave the work unfinished. To handle this situation, most of the top
SaaS companies provide user manual. They also provide interactive
software-based support. If the problem still persists you can call their 24 /7
customer support.

Analytic Tool

Most of the SaaS companies provide analytic tools that gather valuable
information on how and where people are using these applications. This data
will help make you serve better. Your enterprise clients will also get
benefitted from this data.

Benefits of SaaS

Software as a Service comes with several benefits and it is why
enterprises, as well as customers, have high admiration for it. Here we list
the top benefits.

Reduced Time

They say time is money and a SaaS service could be a great time saver.
Contrary to standard software installation a SaaS-based application comes
preinstalled and configured. The software can be provisioned in a few hours. It
saves the time spent on configuration and installation and skips the issues
that surface during configuration.

Reduced Cost

As SaaS is a multitenant or shared software its prices are relatively
small. It is the feature that small and medium scale businesses would like most
as they get an opportunity to use high-end software for a small rent. It
doesn’t only reduce the cost of software but reduced the cost of maintenance as
well, as the responsibility of maintenance lies with the service provider.


Most of the small and medium scale organization look for a SaaS that is
highly scalable.  As SaaS solution is
based on cloud, they are very much scalable and easy to integrate. Contrary to
the standard model, you don’t have to buy another server and install it instead
you just need to contact your SaaS provider and your services will get scaled.

Easy Implementation

SaaS implement is very easy because it is already installed and
configured on the cloud. You don’t have to set up an infrastructure that will
be a complex exercise. What you have to do is to register yourself, add an
extension in your browser or download an application.


Software is needed to be upgraded to meet the ever-changing requirements
of businesses.  In the traditional set up
these software upgrades are costly where user have to buy the latest package
and install them. But it is not the case with a SaaS business model. As it is a
software on rent, the up-gradation is done by the service provider who made it
available to end-users or businesses at a small price. Any individual or
business with a small budget will like this feature.


Compatibility is another issue where Software as a Service SaaS has an
edge over conventional software where installation takes lots of time. Even if
install the traditional software there could be several issues related to
version. In SaaS, the task of up-gradation lies with the service provider and what
subscribers have to do is to just log in to access the features. These services
can be used on any device that works to its advantage.

Option to Switch Provider

A Software as a Service or SaaS gives you the option to switch between
service providers. As most of the services work on a subscription model these
are quite easy to change. There are several SaaS services available and you
should select one that meets your requirements.

How to Choose the Right SaaS Provider

Choosing the right kind of SaaS provider is a tricky situation as there
are various options available. But even with the availability, you may end up
choosing a company which is not the right fit for you. Here we suggest things
to consider to choose the right SaaS provider.

Know Your Requirements

Before start looking for the right SaaS company, you should know your
requirement first, as it is essential.You should clearly define your expectations from the service provider.
You should know your data governance, data security and service management
needs. Being specific about your needs will help look for the service that
meets your expectations.

Know About the Company’s Health

You should know about the health of the SaaS company you are getting
associated with. Know about their year of existence and the kind of service
they have been offering to its clients.If they are in existence for long then they must have served several
companies during their existence and you can check from these companies about
the quality of services. Information about the work of companies can also be
found from the review website where customers voice their opinion.

Certification, Compliances and Standardization

One should prefer a service that has the right certification, compliance
and standard frameworks. Although these are not essential for small businesses,
they help them choose the right service from a sea of SaaS services. There are
several separate bodies that offer certification and compliance for security,
cloud and operations. 


One should also know how will the SaaS solution will integrate will the
existing framework. There would be several applications that would already be
part of your ecosystem. An ideal SaaS
must seamlessly integrate with your existing ecosystem. With better
integration, the users don’t have to go in and out of several applications that
could be time-consuming.

Customization and Scalability

You must check whether the SaaS solutions offered are customizable and
scalable to suit your different business requirements. Customization may
sometime delay the integration process but you have to do it as per
requirements. Some companies have technical expertise for customization and scalability
while small and medium scale businesses don’t have that kind of resources. So,
if you are one such business you should make sure that whether they will
provide customization support.

Pricing Model

SaaS companies have different pricing models so you must know about them
in details. You must ask about the benefits and incentive offered by the
service provider. Depending upon the size of your business there would be
several pricing models available with them and you should know about the
different packages available and why they are best suited for your
business.  Make sure that prices should
be very transparent and there should be no hidden price.

Check About Security

One of the major things you should consider while choosing a SaaS
service is its security offerings.  In
this model, your data will be stored on a third-party server and you would be
accessing it through the internet. Due to this reason, you might have several
privacy and security concerns your SaaS provider must answer. You must know
about the several securities features the prospective vendor is providing. You
should ask about features like redundancy for data storage, fault tolerance and
other security safeguards they might be taking. 
As security features vary from industry to industry you must check the
security features the proposed SaaS cloud is offering.

Know About the Support

A SaaS solution should be very good at providing help and support to its
customers and there should be a well laid out procedure for it. The ideal way
to know this is by asking a trial period which most of the service providers
can happily offer. There are SaaS companies who promise quality services while
signing the contract. The services get worse as you become a paying customer.

Read the Service Level Agreement (SLA) Carefully

The service level agreement is the statement where a service provider
states about the services it will be offering to clients.  It describes the tangible aspect of service
like its availability, quality and kind of support. While hiring a SaaS company
you must read every term and condition carefully as it has a great bearing on
your relationship with your vendor. Make sure that an SLA must have a provision
regarding what to do if the service provider fails to live up to the expectations.  A downtime will lead to failure of service
and you will be getting lots of bad reviews and

Contingency Plans 

As you are integrating SaaS in
your IT ecosystem, you might be running several vital operations on it. What if
the service fails for a long time? Is there a contingency plan?  You must seek the answer to these questions
while looking for a SaaS platform. A service provider must have a contingency
plan to keep your business running, in case of any violation, you should get
compensated for it.


While choosing a SaaS company, one of the major things thing we keep in
mind is that it is easy to implement while we completely ignore the training
part. There is no benefit of SaaS unless our employees are trained to make most
of it. There are service providers that offer training for its customers. You
should check whether your vendor is providing training. There are SaaS
companies that engage third party trainers for providing training to new

Migration Option

As an established business you might have a large amount of data. This
data must be incorporated into the new system. This is a time-consuming
experience. There are structured and unstructured data in different formats
that will make it further difficult. Some experienced service provider knows
how to overcome these situations and complete the task of data migration
easily. Ask your SaaS company, if they have a similar mechanism in place for
data migration. If not, how would they manage it?

Backup Plans

A SaaS provider must safeguard businesses against data loss. A good
service provider must have its own formidable backup plan that comes into play
in the case of service or manmade errors. Some service provider offers
customers an interface to create their own backup. Ask if your vendor is
offering one such facility.  If not, what
do they do to provide you with the backup in the times of a disaster?

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