How Can Bespoke SaaS Help Your Business?
Off-the-shelf Software as a Service (SaaS) can be an excellent alternative to an on-premise or desktop-based software solution for your business. However, while there are many types of solutions available for a variety of needs, there are several benefits of utilising bespoke SaaS for your business.
What is SaaS?
SaaS refers to using software through a cloud-based platform instead of running it on your desktop or business network. Since the software is in the cloud, you and your employees can access the service from anywhere, and from any device, provided you have a working internet connection. This service model is subscription-based, so you only pay a small fee to use it.
Some examples of a SaaS are Google Apps, MailChimp, Hubspot, and Canva.
There are several benefits of off-the-shelf SaaS like low cost and little maintenance overhead.
However, generic SaaS solutions can have certain disadvantages, which may not suit your business requirements.
Benefits of Bespoke SaaS
In the battle between ‘build vs. buy’, unless speed of deployment is the most important factor, the trend is leaning towards build. There are several advantages of building a bespoke SaaS solution instead of buying (or renting, more accurately).
One of the main benefits of bespoke SaaS you get is ownership of the product. After the initial investment you own that solution and don’t have to pay to use it. You may choose to license it out to other businesses to recover the cost, or use it exclusively for your own company. Either way, it’s a product that belongs to you instead of someone else.
Good for Scalability
Another advantage of using custom SaaS solutions is that it does not matter how many employees you have. Since it is your own product, you don’t have to pay more when your company grows. Whether you have two employees or two hundred, you can continue to use the software without the fear of increasing costs.
Instead of having to use more than one software program to meet your business requirements, the biggest benefit of a bespoke SaaS solution is that one program could have all the features your company needs. This way, you don’t need to cobble together functional qualities using different programs.
No Compatibility Problems
With bespoke SaaS, all your features are included in one custom solution. As a result, you don’t have to worry about compatibility between different platforms. This means you and your employees can work more efficiently. It also means you don’t have to worry about inconsistent quality between different products, either.
While the initial cost of a bespoke SaaS solution might seem higher, you may find that the overall expense is lower. The benefit of bespoke SaaS is that you don’t have to pay a subscription fee every month which can add up over time. You also don’t have to worry about a growing number of employees, which will also increase your recurring expense. Most importantly, as we mentioned before, you can even license out your custom SaaS solution to other companies and recover your investment and create a new revenue stream to boot.
Disadvantages of Off-the-Shelf SaaS Solutions
Renting Rather Than Owning
The cost of an off-the-shelf SaaS solution might seem lower than buying bespoke software, it is still an ongoing monthly fee you have to budget for. Just like renting a house, you can pay for years but never own it. If you take that expense into consideration, it could be considered money ‘wasted’.
License fees are generally tied to the number of users using the solution which means that, as your company grows, you will need to pay more and more for your employees to use the off the shelf SaaS solution.
As with off-the-shelf software, a generic SaaS solution might not have the full spectrum of features that you might need. While it is entirely possible to supplement the feature-set with another program, you could have compatibility issues between the two. This could affect the efficiency and productivity of your company.
In the same vein, you will have many features you don’t want or need. This can cause confusion in the way your users operate the system – breaking process and introducing inconsistency into your business.
Using different software programs to cover your business’s needs can mean that you have to deal with differing levels of quality between various solutions. This inconsistency could affect your employees’ quality of work.
As with any service, off the shelf SaaS solution providers could amend their rates at any point. This would mean your company’s expenses per month could suddenly increase. While it may not be a significant change, it is still an additional expense.
As you can see, there are several benefits of a bespoke SaaS solution custom-built for your company. In addition to reducing cost and making operations more efficient, it also makes it easier for you to expand your business.