ENTERPRISE SAAS: The True Catalyst For Enterprise Digital Adoption

Dhiman Ray, Vice President, Happiest Minds Technologies | Wednesday, 06 February 2019, 10:21 IST

Dhiman is Vice President and Global Head for Digital Business Platforms and Solutions at Happiest Minds. He focuses on building next generation Digital Platforms powered by IP solutions, leveraging a nexus of Digital Technologies -Artificial Intelligence(especially Behavioral AI), Cloud Computing, Microservices, Intelligent Process Automation (IPA), Blockchain, etc.

As cloud adoption and hosted services proliferate more than ever before, enterprise Software-as-a-Service (e-SaaS) is gaining momentum. Cisco’s Global Cloud Index for the period 2013-2018 highlighted that 59% of all cloud workflows would be delivered as software-as-a-service by the end of 2018. Gartner predicts SaaS revenues to reach $85 billion in 2019, and by 2021, SaaS will account for 45% of all application software. Platform providers are simplifying the job of creating new applications by streamlining SaaS application prototyping, testing and rollout. e-SaaS has become the truly refined, purpose-built and prebaked form of SaaS that enterprises consume directly in a frictionless manner.

Why business users love e-SaaS!

Let’s look at why e-SaaS is gaining such widespread popularity amongst business users. Contrary to traditional SaaS platforms, e-SaaS comes with prebaked functions and processes embedded with digital capabilities allowing deployments with easier and lesser customization, thereby making it a cost-efficient option. Its streamlined interfaces are easily configurable, encouraging a “plug n play” or “wrap and adapt” approach for back office systems. At the same time, they are user friendly too. Based on natural language processing, e-SaaS applications enable intelligent, secure and natural voice- and touch-based smart interactions for end users.

Business buyers love e-SaaS due to its ease of use, quick deployment, lower capital risk and rapid go-to-market advantage. e-SaaS offers infrastructure and development environments on demand. That is a huge plus for enterprises that prefer managing their mission-critical business processes in an on-demand environment, and such an experimentation bed to try out new products makes e-SaaS applications all the more desirable. This consumption-driven model with a lower risk of adoption allows enterprises to enjoy increased productivity and lower software ownership costs. The easily configurable streamlined interfaces allow rapid transformation of existing products, ushering the way for new products within a very short period of time.

Is e-SaaS new?

Until a few years ago, the digital world didn’t take e-SaaS too seriously. However, today, e-SaaS has evolved and a vast majority of enterprises use it on an everyday basis. If we go back in time, initially, e-SaaS only dealt with HR processes (for employee onboarding and engagement), and IT helpdesk functions (for providing end users with a conversational experience). Its popularity gradually increased, expanding e-SaaS to other functions. It breathed in new life into contact centers, converting them into digital engagement centers.

e-SaaS also transformed other processes and functions, including customer onboarding, fluidic shopping or commerce/campaign anywhere, digital content delivery, digital supply chain, etc. It has become one of the most popular delivery models for a host of business applications, including messaging, payroll processing, database management, development software, gamification, accounting, collaboration, customer relationship management, enterprise resource planning and human resource management - the list goes on.

Today, e-SaaS has blurred the line between sales and service across industries, and this is especially true in the case of B2C organizations (retail, travel, etc.). Converting every conversation into a sales opportunity has become easier as there is a convergence in conversation across channels.

How is e-SaaS enabling business transformation?

Unlike traditional enterprise software that has business products dictated or defined by back office functions, e-SaaS solutions enable true consumerization of business processes and products, within a very short time window. Delivered as a service that is hosted and maintained by the vendor, enterprise SaaS solutions are easily configurable by users and provide a continuous experimentation bed for the enterprise - for upcoming features or new products altogether.

This, therefore, enables organiza­tions to keep pace with the rapidly changing consumer market and gain the competitive edge by facilitating new product launches within a very short period of time. With product-performance-based pricing, e-SaaS is comparatively easy on the pocketbook where cost is defined by consumption. e-SaaS has brought a windfall in enter­prise digital adoption such that, rather than waiting for over nine months for transformation to make an impact, the recommendation is to directly derive returns on investment, on the move.

Customer centricity stands at the core of e-SaaS with closed loop feedback systems enabling the launch of new product features, thereby closing existing gaps. e-SaaS applications have also been bridging the gap between customer and sales points beyond traditional channels - as an example, virtual stores today take the store to where the customer goes without any compromise on the end experience.

e-SaaS: the driving force in enterprise digital adoption

Irrespective of whether an organization is looking at e-SaaS through the lens of the technology or business decision maker, the strategic position of this emerging technology is growing significantly. For organizations looking to meet their digital transformation goals, there’s no better time than “now” to consider best practices around cloud-based software management, and drive efficiency, value and innovation.

While user friendliness, ease of de­ployment, fastest go-to-market, low capex and lower total cost of owner­ship are the key forces driving e-SaaS adoption in enterprises, it also brings along a host of other benefits - the power to upgrade with new, inno­vative features without causing any negative impact on the core technol­ogy stack, low-cost provisioning with consumption-based pricing, and neg­ligible overhead costs. e-SaaS is a true catalyst for enterprise digital adoption. To sum up, convenience is driving this rapid growth. An Intuit study high­lights that 85% of small business own­ers plan to invest in SaaS solutions by 2020. It is quite clear that enter­prise SaaS will turn out be one of the most disruptive technologies in the near future.

The way forward!

Regardless of an enterprise’s digital complexity, considering e-SaaS deployment as part of the digital transformation strategy will be a must for the organization to succeed in its journey toward innovation. Marketing using e-SaaS platforms will help realize better returns on investment. For businesses and enterprises looking forward to disrupt and monetize customer interaction and insights in a plug-n-play manner, e-SaaS seems to be an imperative and the way to go for an effective and impactful digital adoption with a very promising return on digital.

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