Don’t Cram Yourself into SaaS

My wife likes shoes. I take that back. My wife LOVES shoes. High heels, the more stylish and trendy, the better. As a toddler my daughter came up her own term of “handle shoes” for my wife’s collection. Because my daughter could grab the heel of the shoe like a handle. I now have a 9 year old asking to wear heels.  I have my hands full.

 

About a year ago my wife was trying on a pair of trendy heels. The shoes were the new hip thing… at least that’s what Cosmo said. But… they just weren’t comfortable. As I watched my wife struggle to stay upright in those monstrosities of fashion, my mind obviously made an immediate connection to SaaS software. I mean, it’s obvious, right?

 

SaaS software is hip. It’s trendy. It’s the thing to do.  But is it for everyone?

 

I’ll be the first to admit that I’m a SaaS evangelist. However, over the past five years I’ve watched many non-SaaS customers cram their feet into uncomfortable SaaS solutions. A procurement cycle will start decrying, “We must move to SaaS!”  Due diligence is put to the side, as people blindly march towards SaaS. Unfortunately, it’s not always the right choice… or not the right time for that choice.

 

Moving to SaaS is no small task, and businesses need to ask the right questions upon this journey.

 

  • How mission critical is the system?
  • Can you sacrifice features in order to stay on the SaaS train?
  • Will your change management processes be able to keep pace?
  • How robust is the vendor’s integration framework for those integrations to survive SaaS upgrades?
  • Does the SaaS solution satisfy regulatory requirements your organization may have?

 

That’s just a start.

 

Luckily some vendors have figured this out and offer multiple delivery solutions. Offerings include true multi-tenant SaaS, SaaS on the customer’s schedule, and even behind the firewall implementations. All while on a singular product code base. You don’t need to sacrifice their core business needs.

 

As you set out on your journey (and it is a journey!) focus on the end business solution requirements. Challenge yourself to simplify as much as possible, but don’t sacrifice core business needs. There is a right fit.

 

Back to the shoes. My wife never bought those uncomfortable heels. She’s a smart girl. She settled on a pair of retro sneakers.

 

Sometimes classic and comfortable is trendy.

 

Don’t be afraid to be the tortoise in the race. We all know how that ends.