Considerationfor implementation of Software as a Service (SaaS)
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AmericanPublic University System
Considerationfor implementation of Software as a Service (SaaS)
Softwareas a Service (SaaS) sometimes known as the on-demand software meantfor the licensing and the delivery models in which they are licensedon a subscription basis and hosted in a central location. SaaS isthen easily accessible to the users through a thin line using aweb-based browser. It is becoming a very popular model in businessesfor use in their offices for tasks such as messaging, processing ofthe payroll, management software, customer relationship andaccounting. SaaS eliminates the need for firms to have applicationsinstalled and run on their computers at their data centers. The modelremoves the costs associated with the acquisition and maintaining aswell as the installation and support expenses(Ashta & Patel, n.d.).
Theconcept of centralizing business organizations began in the 1960’swhere the IBM and other providers made use of utility computing toconduct a service bureau business. The services offered include thestorage of data to commercial banks and other big corporates fromtheir subsidiaries across the world. The increased use of computersin the 1990’s led to the formation of a central computing mechanismcalled the Application Service Provider (ASP) which offered to hostand manage specialized organizational applications on behalf of thebusinesses with the main aim being to reduce the costs. Software as aService is an extension of the ASP idea although the term SaaS ismore commonly used(Ashta & Patel, n.d.).
Forpurposes of ensuring that SaaS is implemented to the satisfaction ofthe consumers, there are a number of hardware requirements for thecomputer information system. The file server is one of the hardwarerequirements. It is defined as a computer that is attached to anetwork and whose basic objective is to provide a location for theshared data access, for example, stored computer files that caneasily be accessed by other parties that are attached to the computernetwork (Jamsa, 2012). The computer files would include a database,documents, sound video files and so on. Since the basic function of afile server is storage, improvement in technology has made itpossible to operate some disk drivers forming an array of disks.Considering the number of workstations in the network, the fileserver has the capacity to enable efficient sharing of data betweenthe multiplicities of disk drives attached to the network.
Theserver side development has new requirements. This is due to the factthat some workstations share the same server which in most cases isso demanding. This is because the multi-tenant shared informationrequires that additional security measures be put in place to isolatethe data from different users that use the same server. There areemerging tools and languages that may be supported by the currentIDE’s such as the Microsoft Visual 2012, which currently providessupport to HTML unlike the earlier versions (Jamsa, 2012). Forpurposes of the information system software requirements, one can usePaaS to mitigate the complexities that the SaaS encounters with theuse of most software. The use of Python or Ruby, for instance, wouldmake it easier for SaaS to scale the multiple applications. If Iwanted to improve the information collaboration between varioussites, I would seek a software that can be accessed by many users. Ifthe business, on the other hand, requires a very efficient softwaresolution, then SaaS software that could be accessed by a few peopleis the most appropriate.
Forthe success of SaaS, a number of hardware components could berequired. SaaS can only be effective if it is connected to a networkof hardware components that enable a direct interaction betweendifferent people at different ends of the network. The requirementscould differ from one client to another. There are clients who preferto use their smartphones others would love to use their laptops andothers their desktop computers. A good system would be the one thatenables the sharing of information between the different satiationsusing a different application. The critical issue at hand,nonetheless, is to guarantee the information being shared by theclients on those platforms (Jamsa, 2012).
Similarto the Servers, clients also need a set of software and applicationsthat would make it easier for them to access the database fromwherever they are. Some of the access points could be businessoffices or their homes. It would be efficient to have a cloudsolution that is fully secured and can enable the client to accessinformation on a database at any time they have access to theinternet by simply logging in and off. The software should take careof the backup requirements as well as the ability to upgrade thesoftware. Jquery is also a software that enables cross-browsersolutions. Another program known as Angular does the heavy liftingframeworks and is recommendable as well (Jamsa, 2012).
CompetitiveAnalysis of the System
Thereare several features as well as changes in the market and technologythat are giving SaaS an edge over their competitors. For instance,the increasing use of the web-based user interface by someapplications together with the proliferation of similar practicessuch as web designing has tremendously reduced the need for clientservers thus disadvantaging the traditional software vendors. Thishas opened an opportunity for vendors dealing with modernapplications with user experience.
Thethird competitive advantage for SaaS is the ever increasing broadbandinternet access that has made it possible for applications to offerfast internet access. The current standardized HTTP has provided aglobally available security that is in abundance in the everydayapplications. The model is becoming a very popular in businesses foruse in their offices for tasks such as messaging, processing of thepayroll, management software, customer relationship and accounting.SaaS eliminates the need for firms to have applications installed andrun on their computers at their data centers. The model removes thecosts associated with the acquisition and maintaining as well as theinstallation and support expenses(Ashta & Patel, n.d.).
SaaShas conversely had a fair share of issues that have threatened tocurtail their competitive advantage. These issues have to do with thesecurity of the database especially safety of personal information.This is because of the remote hosting of the applications which makesit difficult to separate the sensitive from the insensitiveinformation as well as making sure that not all the information isavailed to anyone who wants to access it.
Recommendationsfor Improving the System
Despitethe huge advantages that SaaS has brought to the industry, it stillhas a number of challenges that need to improve. Theserecommendations are informed by the fact that the writer acknowledgesthat the information system is not perfect and more measures andinnovations should be put in place to improve it. They include:
The system needs some improvement in as far as the hosting of applications is concerned. This is because the model is not suitable for cases where the user of the application demands instant responses. I recommend that the response time improved by changing the application host.
The system should also be improved to make it easier for users’ confidential data such as personal information separated from the general data that is remotely hosted. This way, it is easy to eliminate the risks and the costs that are associated with loss of secrecy.
Owing to the fact that businesses will usually rely on external vendors to provide the software, any disruptions in the use of application could result in the inability of the user to effectively use SaaS. It is therefore recommended that the businesses make it clear on who will be liable for any disruptions that could lead to losses.
Inconclusion, SaaS has proven to be a very timely innovation at a timewhen the world is getting globalization. The information system hasrevolutionized how people are able to share information. More so isthe fact that business organizations can now share data from a commonserver without having to duplicate the software for each of theworkstations that need to make use of the data. This has greatly cutdown on the costs that are involved in the storage, installation andthe maintenance of the databases. Globalization has made it anecessity for people to share common information from across theworld. Software as a Service has therefore come in handy for both theservice providers as well as their clients. There are, however, someissues that need to be corrected if the software is going to live upto the expectations of integration that was incepted in the 1960’s,hence, a number of recommendations were needed to reinforce the needfor these changes.
Ashta,A., & Patel, J. (n.d.). Is SaaS the appropriate technology forMicrofinance? SSRNElectronic Journal.doi:10.2139/ssrn.1604741
Chae,S., & Park, S. (2014). Effects of firm strategies on customeracquisition of Software as a Service (SaaS) providers: A mediatingand moderating role of SaaS technology maturity. Journalof Intelligence and Information Systems, 20(3),151–171. doi:10.13088/jiis.2014.20.3.151
Jamsa,K. A. (2012). Cloudcomputing: SaaS, PaaS, IaaS, virtualization, business models, mobile,security and more.Sudbury, MA, United States: Jones and Bartlett Publishers.