SaaS applications are the same regardless of the industries they are used in, but industry needs and challenges differ. Enterprises are trying to maximize their operational efficiencies, enhance security, be compliant with audits, and more. However, the challenges of budget, resources, bureaucracy, etc., are very different depending on the industry. Here, in this article, we will try to understand the needs and challenges of SaaS solutions by industry type, and importantly, we will also point out how CloudNuro can help in adopting SaaS applications and discuss how we can mitigate some of the commonly faced industry-specific challenges.
The need for security, operational efficiencies, and compliance in the public sector is as critical as the private sector, which is usually better funded and managed. However, public services like healthcare, utilities, education, transportation are used by the citizens for themselves, their families, and communities at large. The citizens expect demand for features like modern services, 24/7 availability, and security from public services, which are commonly available from the private sector companies. On top of the bureaucracy, the budgets are also lower than their counterparts in the private sector, leaving the IT managers struggling to provide the expected level of service within their constraints.
Considering these challenges, the public sector is quickly moving to cloud-based software as a service (SaaS). The SaaS solutions allow the technology teams the flexibility to purchase and use software services as needed, thus giving them the required control on the spending and expenses. They also relieve the teams of maintaining the infrastructure, managing security of the applications, and other maintenance-related activities, thus enabling them to focus on their core competencies.
Opportunities with SaaS solutions can be seen in the following areas:
- Compliance: Maintaining security standards and being compliant (e.g., HIPAA, PCI, GDPR, etc.)
- Disaster recovery: Relief and cost savings from having to maintain disaster recovery capabilities and SLAs.
- Security: Not having to maintain security experts in-house provides a lot of cost-saving opportunities.
- Remote access: Capability to provide software over the internet that can be accessed from anywhere.
- Speed of implementation: Not having to support hardware and software, SaaS solutions can be implemented very quickly.
The future of healthcare has never looked better and more promising than today, with emerging needs for telemedicine, digitizing services for health and medical records. With these trends, SaaS has a tremendous advantage to revolutionize this space by providing scalability, artificial intelligence, speed of implementation, cost reduction, and more. Data security has been a concern for this industry as it involves storing patient data. Still, with the increased focus on security and compliance by the SaaS vendors, it is not only a non-issue, but there are significant security advantages with SaaS applications like implementing AI to discover security issues and visibility to global security loopholes and vulnerabilities.
How are SaaS applications helping:
Telemedicine and virtual healthcare: With the recent pandemic, the healthcare industry has adopted telemedicine and virtual healthcare, providing innovative and safe solutions to people. These services undoubtedly rely on SaaS applications for virtual consultations, online health tracking, etc.
Collaboration between medical staff members: Smooth and uninterrupted collaboration between medical staff members is critical to provide the services and scale them in ways unimaginable in the past. For example, it is easy to schedule virtual meetings, track and manage the employees’ schedules.
- Security: AI in security and visibility to the global pool of vulnerabilities are helping SaaS applications be proactive on security discovery and issues and helping them to be secure more than ever.
According to the article ‘Software as a Service (SaaS) Market by Deployment and Geography – Forecast and Analysis 2021-2025’ published in Technavio, the SaaS market may potentially grow by USD 99.99 billion during 2021-2025, and the market’s growth momentum will accelerate at a CAGR (Compound Annual Growth Rate) of 11.35%. With such tremendous growth in adopting SAAS applications in the technology sector, the need for SAAS management stands out remarkably.
Both B2B and B2C companies use SAAS products. According to the article ‘The 10 Essential SaaS Trends You Should Watch Out For In 2021‘, the key SAAS trends impacting technology are:
- Artificial Intelligence (AI)
- Machine Learning (ML)
- Analytics and Visualization
- The growing need for API connections and integrations
- Enhanced mobile optimization
The education industry saw the most changes among all the industries during the pandemic. The changes were in the making for a long time, but the pandemic gave no other option but to adopt them. Education is no longer seen as classrooms with students and books. That has changed now. Students can get their education from anywhere globally; electronic books and video tutorials have replaced physical books; personal devices have replaced traditional notes taking. The industry was fast to adopt SaaS as it is easy to adopt, deploy and quickly realize the ROI. The changes that we are talking about specifically are:
- Student-student and student-teacher Collaboration: SaaS helps students collaborate on projects from anywhere. Working on documents, exchanging information, and tracking progress are some of the areas made possible by cloud-hosted SaaS applications. Teachers can communicate and work with students using the SaaS-based LMS (Learning Management Systems) and virtual meeting applications.
Use your own device: Everyone is free to use their devices, including mobile devices like phones and tablets, to get things done. This is a huge advantage and relief to the IT departments as they don’t have to manage the hardware for staff and students.
Easier budgeting: SaaS applications have simple pricing than their counterpart on-prem applications. Schools are free to experiment with multiple applications and are not locked with any vendor. They are easy to deploy and adopt. With these benefits, budgeting and forecasting become easy.
Easy administration: Schools and colleges can save a lot on administration costs of applications by adopting SaaS. SaaS applications take away expensive overhead costs of managing, maintenance, and applying updates to applications in-house.
- Security: Like any other industry, security is a big issue for the education industry as the data includes personal and financial information of the students, classified research documents, etc. The responsibility of managing application security is transferred to the SaaS vendor, relieving the school staff of managing security.
Keywords: Solutions by Industry; Public Sector-SaaS Ops; Healthcare-SaaS Ops; Technology-SaaS Ops; Education-SaaS Ops; Information technology (IT) adoption; Software-as-a-service (SaaS).