SaaS has been targeting the Small and Mid market companies by and large. Why wouldn’t the large enterprises go ahead with SaaS? In my mind, there are two key reasons why they wouldn’t want to SaaS, one being the integration capabilities of SaaS application with their existing IT ecosystem and the other being the flexibility provided by SaaS offerings towards customization required by them.

Is there a silver bullet to these issues? The answer lies in SOA, which if implemented well can allow the SaaS vendors to cater to the large enterprises. Moreover, mid-market companies requirements are more or less the same  in comparison to large enterprises. So, the earlier that SOA is adopted by SaaS vendors, the better it would be for them. Implementing SOA is not easy by itself and it requires a lot of discipline and understanding of business processes.

Some of the key things that you can accomplish with SOA:

  • Your SaaS application can integrate well with existing IT assets of your end-user
  • Mashups will become a possibility between business processes or services that can be a combination of on-demand and on-premise services
  • SOA enabled SaaS will allow you to scale, flexibly version your software efficiently. Take a look at salesforce.com and the volumes they do.

SOA can get you only as much but not really to where you want to be in terms of integration, scale and flexibility. This certainly would require an excellent governance mechanism. If the various predictions of SaaS adoption is to become true ever, then SOA needs to be the foundation for SaaS.

In the next few weeks, we at Aspire Systems are coming up with a paper and a webinar on this same topic targeting the ISVs that are in SaaS and considering moving to SaaS. Watch this space for more information.

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