What is SaaS?
Software as a service (SaaS) is a cloud-based software delivery model in which the cloud provider develops and maintains cloud application software, provides automatic software updates, and makes software available to its customers via the internet on a pay-as-you-go basis. The cloud provider manages all the hardware, middleware, application software, and security. So SaaS customers can dramatically lower costs; deploy, scale, and upgrade business solutions more quickly than maintaining on-premises systems and software; and predict total cost of ownership with greater accuracy.
In the early 2000s, the first generation of SaaS solutions was siloed, inflexible, and designed to solve a single business problem. Since then, SaaS has evolved dramatically. Today, a modern cloud suite can span—and connect—everything from financials, human resources, procurement, and supply-chain processes to commerce, marketing, sales, and service solutions. Other benefits of a modern, complete SaaS solution include:
- Connected, end-to-end business processes built-in
- Ease of configuration and personalization
- Rapid data portability
- Comprehensive cloud security
- Embedded analytics
- Support for emerging technologies, from artificial intelligence (AI) to chatbots, Internet of Things (IoT), and more