Although Software as a Service (SaaS) has become widely adopted, some organizations’ application management practices have not changed to reflect this.
All too often enterprise SaaS upgrades are handled in the same way as on-site software. Risk averse enterprises tend to rely on their IT service providers and their methodologies to support a mix of on-site and SaaS applications. The methodology is often the same for both types of software: The ITS provider lines up staff, according to its traditional application management strategies; one to oversee the upgrade, another to do impact assessments, another to fix issues on the day and so on. Before you know it, you have a team of half a dozen people lined up to help with the SaaS upgrade. In the meantime, the upgrade gets done remotely overnight by the SaaS software provider who has automated a large part of the process. It is not unusual for the on-site ITS team members to sit there looking embarrassed while twiddling their thumbs.
This is not to say that SaaS clients should throw caution to the wind and rely 100% on the SaaS providers’ best efforts. Instead they need to revisit best practices and follow upgrade strategies that fit the SaaS model. This should result in a reduction in the effort to oversee an enterprise SaaS upgrade by more than 50%.
Cloud and SaaS have had a huge impact on the ITS market already. This is evident by the reducing size of contracts. With increasing automation in the cloud, this trend is set to continue. The more adaptive of organizations will be reaping cost reduction benefits well ahead of those who stick to older approaches for managing their applications. The question to ask yourself: Is your organization stuck in tradition or adapting for its benefit?