Software as a Service (SaaS) can transform the way your business implements computing applications. IT departments can reinvent their role as application providers to the rest of the company. SaaS application development is emerging as the most effective means of delivering software across an increasingly remote and mobile workforce. The SaaS market reached $32.8 billion in 2016. With centralized services provided and sustained by professional vendors over the cloud, IT focus is changing from the burden of deploying and supporting business networks and software to technology initiatives and development.
Traditionally, software products were sold under a one-time licensing model and installed on-premises. This could be a risky undertaking that required investment, technical support, and the potential for real ROI that was often beyond the means of small companies.
The product of a SaaS application development company is usually sold as a subscription, pay-as-you-go model. These ongoing fees will differ from one product to the next, with some providers charging a flat rate for access to all the applications features, while others may charge premiums for certain services or some users. The SaaS provider is typically expected to deploy patches and upgrades transparently.
SaaS for Business
One of the strengths of SaaS application development is that some products, especially those offered as open source solutions, will allow further development. This may come in the form of modular add-ons enabling some degree of customization, but many providers will include APIs (application programming interfaces) that expose internal data and functions so that your developers can build in new features to customize their SaaS application development platform.
You can adapt your own proprietary software services to reside on an internet server, or may contract the services of a SaaS application development company. This benefits your business in that access can be sold for a fee, but more often is a customer-facing application that promotes support or reporting features as a service that increases customer engagement. In either case, it’s essential that security mechanisms are in place.
SaaS application development should be designed for distributed infrastructures. Traditional client-server models can involve just two computers, but most SaaS solution in modern cloud computing services run on multiple servers. This can include file servers, application servers, data servers, and more operating with different server OS and processes. Any design you choose must allow for bandwidth and load limitations across all of these platforms.
Most SaaS services are created to utilize a device-independent user interface. With the variety of desktop and especially mobile devices in use, browser-friendly HTML5 has become a standard SaaS application development platform that can accommodate web apps, style sheets, scripts, and more. Developing your apps and interfaces from the ground up around HTML5 makes them accessible to almost any use.
Benefits of SaaS development
A business model that delivers on-demand provides new opportunities for smaller companies. It doesn’t require an extensive client infrastructure to support powerful applications. This significantly reduces your costs for onsite hardware resources and IT staff to manage them. With little to no investment, an organization that isn’t satisfied with its choice of SaaS services can terminate the arrangement and look elsewhere with minimal financial loss.
When additional development or integration with other systems isn’t required of your SaaS application development platform, services can be executed with little effort. This provides a brief time-to-value compared to other technologies.
With SaaS services, all the support is handled by the provider, including testing, patches, upgrades, performance monitoring, availability, and all the other factors that keep systems working optimally day after day. By transferring this overhead to the provider, your IT staff can perform more valuable activities in aligning technology strategies with company goals. With an outsourced SaaS application development company overseeing implementation of essential business programs, IT has more time to play a more significant role in your company development.