Readers Weigh In

Respondents include enthusiastic SaaS supporters and cautious detractors.

InformationWeek Staff, Contributor

April 17, 2008

2 Min Read

SaaS survey respondents ran the gamut from wholehearted supporters to those with a more cynical view. One told us that many factors support the increased use of SaaS: "We have a self-service culture which enables departments, teams, and individuals to weigh in on the services they use. Users are becoming used to easy access to services delivered over the Internet and the pay-as-you-go model. Within IT, the factors include technology enablers, increasingly diverse client hardware platforms, data center consolidation/virtualization, and IT governance dictating six-month project deliverables. These factors all contribute to the increase in SaaS."

Others are more cautious, including one IT pro who stresses keeping the hardware portion of the application ecosystem in-house, yet discusses SaaS initiatives with those on the front lines: "SaaS is going to help the industry move to more flexible, easier to upgrade and manage business software. We are using some SaaS solutions today and will continue to move in that direction where it makes sense. ... Time will tell if the in-house solutions will also migrate."

InformationWeek Reports

Consultants and traditional network integrators continue to play major roles in SaaS rollouts, especially in larger enterprises. More than 55% of companies with more than 1,000 employees reported using a third party to assist with the implementation of their recent SaaS initiatives. Conversely, 66% of smaller organizations worked directly with the SaaS provider.

Among detractors, one theme emerged: "SaaS is mostly a sales pitch, which is why the CIO is the only one listening." Our poll doesn't support that. While our 2007 survey showed only 16% of IT advocating SaaS adoption, that number jumped to 24% in this year's survey. This is important because, Web 2.0 and user-driven mashups notwithstanding, IT still remains the front line of any application deployment, whether internally hosted or delivered via a SaaS model.

Michael Healey is CTO of GreenPages Technology Solutions, a national IT solutions provider. Write to him at [email protected].

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