First we should start with a definition of SaaS which was given by Wikipedia. ” is a model of software deployment whereby a provider licenses an application to customers for use as a service on demand. SaaS software vendors may host the application on their own web servers or download the application to the consumer device, disabling it after use or after the on-demand contract expires.” Please see our updated definition!
Even with this definition I think there is some confusion about SaaS and the main goal of it. SaaS is supposed to help reduce the administration burden from the organization. In other words they should not be spending valuable time updating “consumer devices” with the upgrades from the vendor or performing backups. This sort of defeats the purpose of SaaS by forcing the end-user to upgrade their computers every time the Software Company comes out with a new patch. While I agree with the first sentence of this definition I believe the second one needs some work. The “download the application to the consumer device” comment forces the user to stay upgraded on their PC with the Church Software Vendor package. When purchasing a SaaS system make sure this is taken into account when looking at prices.
In addition the software should be workable on any computer (PC, MAC, Linux, etc) without the software company having 2 or more sets of code that work on the various OS. Trying to find this out maybe a little hard because most software companies will not divulge this information. A successful provider will leverage a multi-tenant (end users) with a single instance (programming code). The reason is the software company can than use the same system no matter what the client comes on board without having customization. By doing this they are able to leverage the reduction of cost of having one set of code and ultimately saving the end-user money in the end. Taking this consideration into account the field narrows to only the CMS providers that deliver through a browser because they are platform independent and do not need more coding for Linux versus Mac or others.
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