SaaS has come a long way in the last few years – but it’s got a lot further to go. It’s anybody’s guess what will happen in the future, but here are some of the possibilities:
Integration becomes the norm.
‘Joined-up’ software is better for the consumer, and vendors know it and hence why over recent years vendors have collaborated in an unprecedented way. SaaS systems lend themselves to integration – software working harmoniously increases acceptance by potential users, take-up rates and thus improves the bottom-line. Given that, it follows that the industry standard for SaaS will be integration.
Small businesses carry on innovating.
Smaller companies are the main SaaS innovators. Being smaller means being able to respond quickly to demand, and iteration is logistically more straightforward. The result will be flexible, dynamic software, built quickly in response to demand. A good example of this is Workbooks.com, who have lead the way in SaaS CRM software, bringing innovative customer care with their system.
Big business gets in on the act
On the other hand, big software companies are already starting to offer many SaaS systems. The trend for them will be towards moving traditional offerings into the cloud. This is happening right now, with major companies releasing SaaS offerings.
Private clouds will emerge
‘Private’ clouds work in a similar way to the normal Cloud, but sit, closed-off, behind firewalls. They offer many of the advantages of SaaS but are more individual and, well, private. The principle of serving software from a central location over the internet applies, but access is restricted. Most importantly the SaaS business fails because there is no universality for the software.
This would be a threat to the SaaS vendors, but past experience says they will raise their game to meet it. The end result of this could be even better software.
Overall, there is a clear move towards SaaS and many people say it will become standard in the near future. This is the real prediction – most software will be SaaS in years to come.
Soon the word processor I’m writing this on will be held on a server somewhere else – I simply call it up when I need it, then save the document in the cloud, possibly in a completely different place to the software. The software is available right now, it’s just not the norm yet. But it will be.
There is no way of knowing exactly how this will happen. All the above could happen – or none of them. One thing is certain, SaaS is not going away.
This article was written by Workbooks, leading supplier of web-based CRM software.