5 Essentials That Every SaaS Company Needs

My Post (32)Cloud computing services are three words that most business professionals are now used to hearing at once.

The 21st century, where the evolution of the world of business has been bringing along changes to everything about how an enterprise functions, all the operations are shifting to online platforms from the offline database. eCommerce and e-networking are two of the most important components of online operations that are playing major roles in the expansion of sales. Along with that, the system of computers is also changing.

The biggest change is in the form of SaaS. Software as a Service or more commonly called as SaaS is a way of providing companies with an online software licensing and delivery model instead of offline computer pre-install method.

Just like how various online subscriptions work, from Netflix to Amazon shopping, SaaS is usually based on a similar subscription model and is also called an on-demand software. Some might call it like a rental service where the user himself doesn’t exactly pay but borrows the service from a provider. It is gaining a huge amount of popularity due to the various following advantages:

1) Low cost – Completely online and subscription based, this model saves sellers from overhead transport and installation costs hence, in turn, reducing the selling price for the product. Usually, you have to pay 15-20% as maintenance and support fees if you buy an offline model. Those costs are completely avoided in SaaS.

2) Scalability – Since it is based on an online model, it is usually a feature that is available for expansion and extended usage. There are usually different packages which can be subscribed and then it is flexible and open to change as the business grows.

3) Accessibility – The online model makes things very simple. Anyone with a computer and a decent internet connection can subscribe and access their software whenever and wherever.

Everyone ranging from finance to Human resource employees is now using SaaS in their departments. Not only these reduce the cost of installation but also require lesser IT infrastructure to be maintained in the long run. Moreover, the service is very easy to procure and available in the markets which makes it a good deal for companies looking to reduce their financial burden.

It is probably because of all these advantages and the high market demand that new companies providing SaaS models are popping up around the world. Moreover, SaaS sales were predicted to grow by 23% in 2018 to reach a value of 72 billion dollars. Furthermore, Tapping this high-growth market is a win-win situation. However, SaaS models and the success of your company during providing the same depends on various other factors.

In a market with high competition and high user base, it is vital for every SaaS provider to have these following 5 essential features – Read more

Importance Of Cloud Computing For Businesses

My Post (31).pngIt’s astonishing how fast the innovation evolves in only a couple of years.

Before Cloud Computing, individuals would run applications or projects from programming downloaded on a physical PC or server in their premise. In those days, numerous organizations were attempting to make their own data centers and the individuals who had them would, for the most part, assign a noteworthy number of IT experts and assets. In any case, with the increasing unpredictability of data centers and the number of IT experts expected to oversee them, doubtlessly keeping up productivity, in the long run, turned into another challenge.

Organizations need to use the cloud. They perceive the capacities the cloud brings and how it can affect their work. Notwithstanding the advantages, however, embracing a cloud solution isn’t something that ought to be managed without the slightest hesitation. Companies need to consider what reason do they need cloud computing.

The right response isn’t general, as it will vary from organization to organization. Based on your business needs and the work processes and tasks you perform regularly, the favorable circumstances you can bring from the cloud will change. The cloud is truly adaptable, fortunately, so pretty much any solution you need, regardless of how enormous or small, could be possible in the cloud. If your enterprise is thinking about deploying the cloud into your framework, it should know about the advantages the cloud can bring and which will give the best results to them. We’ve come with a rundown of the reasons why companies should move to the cloud to enable you to comprehend what the cloud can do for you.

Flexibility and Scaling

Cloud computing enables small organizations to oversee fluctuating demand. Before, organizations with on-premises frameworks had to purchase server and workstation upgrades to oblige new users. Presently, when you have to extend your staff, you can sign into your service provider to include users. In like manner, cloud computing can scale everything from bandwidth capacity to processing power, guaranteeing that you can generally have the assets expected to help development. The best part is that when times of peak demand subside, you can downsize your service plan to set aside extra cash.

Investment and Cost Savings

Maybe, a standout amongst the most astounding advantages of Cloud Computing is absolutely significant reserve funds in organization’s IT costs. You don’t have to spend for the purchase of stock, for example, infrastructure and hard disk. You are just charged a minimal cost for customary remuneration every month or once paid, as indicated by the agreed service package with the Cloud Computing service provider. Subsequently, the royalty charges on automated programming licenses are diminished, in light of the fact that they all keep running with Cloud-based computing.

Boosts Productivity

Heard of work from anyplace, whenever? This has originated from cloud computing innovation. Of late, enormous organizations gloat this idea wherein the framework enables the employees and business officials to work whenever, anyplace. This cultivates a decent environment for more cooperation inside the organization. The capacity to share data consistently and deal with projects together can change business processes in a major way. Specialists can finish projects in real-time and share data with one another remotely.

Disaster Recovery

Regardless of the size, each business should put resources into solid disaster recovery, yet for smaller organizations that come up short on the required spending plan and abilities, this is frequently more an ideal than the truth. Cloud is at present helping more organizations dodge that pattern. As indicated by one study, small organizations are twice as likely as greater organizations to have executed cloud-based backup and recovery solutions that spare time, avoid large up-front investment and move up third-party expertise as a feature of the deal.

Security

Cloud services store data on servers and hardware a business doesn’t control. These offsite servers have stringent security measures that avert any form of data breach. They regularly require the most powerful firewalls, get to certifications and security protocols to ensure business managers are open to storing critical data on their servers. The data is stored in a central repository every minute of every day by internet security specialists. – Read more

12 steps to a successful cloud implementation

My Post (30).pngThe cloud presents a great opportunity to reduce cost while increasing performance.

Many government agencies are moving past selecting an infrastructure-as-a-service provider and are wrestling with the challenge of actually achieving value from the cloud. Recent request for information back this assertion as solicitations focus on transitions and multi-cloud environments. Conversations with agency cloud practitioners and procurement officials reveal the need for good, simple advice that can help them move forward.

We have developed 12 golden rules to help agencies make the most of their cloud investment and implementation. On the surface many of these ideas may seem obvious, but the rate of cloud implementation failure suggests otherwise. After over 30 years in the IT business, I find it is useful to put these rules in place at the start as an organization builds its cloud strategy.

1. Start with a cloud center of excellence. Like any major IT investment that results in significant agency change, cloud initiatives need structural support. We recommend standing up a cross-cutting CCoE with the charter, governance, leadership, expertise and clout necessary to achieve results. The CCoE should include a program management office (PMO) to manage the financial, change, communications, technical and operational challenges associated with cloud implementations.

2. It’s still IT infrastructure. As with any government IT program, the same rules around governance and security still apply — but with increased complexity and accelerated timelines. Make sure the CCoE PMO can work across the organization to get things done quickly.

3. Look beyond the technology. Successful cloud implementations go beyond simply ordering IaaS from a cloud service provider. The cloud ecosystem should include the cloud management platforms, disaster recovery solutions, governance and compliance monitoring tools and professional services to ensure success. As agencies move past IaaS, the ecosystem can be expanded to include artificial and machine intelligence and platform- and software-as-a-service options.

4. Change management is important. Implementing the cloud involves the movement of sand piles, so turf battles inevitably emerge. To avoid last minute confusion and standoffs, make sure a robust change management function is part of the PMO. – Read more

SaaS startups are changing the founder/investor dynamic

My Post (29).pngThe balance of power between startup founder and venture capital investor has changed – and the rules of the courtship reversed.

Falling software costs and better management mean Software as a Service (SaaS) startups are accessing less funding, keeping their capital and more often finding success on their own. This is good news for startups as they are independently building the engine of their companies and only accessing funding to purchase fuel to run it.

The shifting fortunes of investors means they need to bring something other than cash to the table. Now more than ever, VC investors need to compete by offering strategic partnerships through expertise and hiring with industry contacts. Money does not bring value, value brings money – and this is the mantra for both startups and investors moving forward in the brave new world of SaaS investment.

SaaS and startups: a revolutionary relationship

The past decade has seen the balance of power between SaaS startup and investor evolve largely thanks to cost and experience. SaaS has fundamentally changed how startups are built and this process has become easier in recent years. Firstly, the move from buying and owning elements has shifted to renting, thus forcing costs down. For example, the cloud makes it possible to solve problems in highly efficient ways without on-site infrastructure.

Secondly, startups are simply smarter. Teams today have better frameworks and learned the mistakes of startups before them. Further, domain experts know exactly what problems to solve, meaning less iteration to getting a product fit for market.

These converging factors means startups are less likely to accept investor funding for the sake of it. This is buoyed by companies who find success with little support – case in point video conferencing company Zoom, who recently filed publicly to reach $330 million from less than $160.5 million of funding in total. In fact when they raised their series A, they were already profitable. Most of the funding taken is in their bank account as is indicated by their S1.

The truth today is that startup founders do not need a lot of capital to build SaaS anymore – a great result for founders as they get to keep more of their startups as they grow. – Read more

Is unified billing the elephant in the room when it comes to SaaS?

My Post (15)As the modern enterprise adopts more and more software as a service (SaaS) applications, billing and compliance are becoming incredibly complex, with a simple solution nowhere to be seen.

How to Increase Product Adoption Rates: Tips for SaaS Enterprises

My Post - 2019-04-25T111440.615.jpgCongratulations! You’ve won a new customer and helped them learn how to use your product or service.

What happens next? In a perfect world, the customer would fully leverage it, then spread the word about your business to their friends and community. But in reality, all products and subscriptions have a learning curve that can block a customer from fully adopting the product. That’s why customer success teams need to continually educate customers about useful features and demonstrate the product’s value long after onboarding.

Supporting new customers during the adoption phase is a vital step in increasing retention. Once you learn how to increase product adoption rates, customers often become brand evangelists who tell their friends, family and social media contacts about your product. And you can’t find a better scenario than retaining customers while also winning new ones.

How to Measure Product Adoption Rates

Before you can work on improving product adoption, you will need to gauge your company’s current product adoption rates. – Read more

7 Things You Must Know about Cloud-Based HR Management Systems

My Post (14).pngLike many others today, your company may be at a point where your leaders are sitting around a table scratching their heads in bewilderment.

Your company is growing at a fast pace, which is definitely a good thing; all that hard work and planning has paid off.

With that growth has come great opportunities for further expansion, and plenty of rewards for the people involved in the meantime. However, you have hit a roadblock. All this growth has led to an increase in your staff, and that staff is becoming very difficult to manage.

It’s not that the people you hired are difficult people. It’s just the way of doing business today has turned effectively managing a medium- to large-sized workforce difficult. Employees often work off-site, either remotely, on the road or away from the company’s main offices. This has caused your company issues when it comes to time management, scheduling, payroll and compliance.

With technology available to today, though, you can solve the challenges of effectively managing your workforce and alleviate the related stress by shifting to a cloud-based HR management system. But what is such a system? How does it work? And what are its benefits?

Here are seven things you must know about cloud-based HR management systems before making the switch.

  1. They Integrate Self-Service for Managers

One of the biggest advantages of cloud-based HR management systems is they allow supervisors of a company to manage their teams and employees from anywhere in the world, at any time. By moving all information, data and operations to the cloud, you will be expanding your accessibility significantly.

Now, managers can use either computers, laptops or any mobile device to perform the daily mundane tasks such as viewing employee information and events, reviewing and approving time cards and approving employees’ submitted requests to take time off.

  1. They Integrate Self-Service for Employees, Too

Cloud-based HR management systems aren’t all about cutting down the headache for supervisors, though. The great part is they simplify the mundane process of clocking in and out of work, submitting time sheets and requesting time off for employees.

Employees can easily go about completing all of these tasks from their mobile devices, while they’re out on the job or if they’re sick in bed at home. This eliminates the need for them to keep manual paper time sheets.

More advanced systems, such as the one created by Mitrefinch, offer some impressive clock-in and clock-out features such as biometric fingerprint scanners, as well as options to do so via desktops and also mobile devices that run on both iOS and Android systems.

  1. They Make Scheduling and Tracking Easy

One of the most difficult and time-consuming tasks for any supervisor is creating a dynamic employee schedule, making adjustments to that schedule on the fly and then tracking employee attendance and productivity. With a cloud-based HR management system, this is all simplified.

The platform makes it easy for supervisors to create even complex schedules for their employees. Then, once the schedule is in place, the system provides an easy way for these supervisors to track their employees’ attendance, make adjustments to the schedule if someone calls out and keep employees accountable with real-time visibility of the workforce.

Some features such as GPS tracking allow supervisors to monitor whether remote employees actually are where they say they are, giving an extra boost to productivity.

  1. They Streamline the HR Process

Your Human Resources department has a very difficult job, but this can be streamlined using a cloud-based HR management system. The platform can help your company easily access, analyze and report on details associated with human resources, including job applications, contract details and training qualifications.

By moving to the cloud, your HR department can reduce time spent on administrative tasks and filing, easily store and access all of your employee records, simplify the recruitment and onboarding process, and generate detailed workforce reports on labor activity.

  1. They Ensure Compliance and Accuracy

As companies grow, it becomes more difficult for them to remain compliant with regulations and to remain accurate in essential tasks such as payroll. This is where cloud-based HR management systems can play a huge role.

Mitrefinch’s platform allows the HR department to securely store and manage details of each employee with the highest security standards on the market. It also allows supervisors to monitor and track workforce data with real-time reporting, and to receive reminders with proactive alerts.

Finally, HR can monitor the workforce’s use of FMLA and each individual’s performance indicators through the system.

  1. They Free Up HR Time

One of the biggest benefits to a cloud-based HR management system is they free up a significant amount of time for HR personnel that is normally spent managing the attendance and payroll process. These platforms automate this process and integrate directly with a company’s payroll system, reducing the time spent collecting and reviewing old-school timesheets and then accurately entering that data into a payroll system.

With this extra time, a company can take full advantage of their HR resources and get more value from their talented HR team. This allows HR personnel to shift their focus to bigger-picture projects such as helping the business to deliver on goals, strategic work and any strategic imperatives the company may have.

  1. They Reduce the Cost of Doing Business

At the end of the day, perhaps the largest single benefit of using cloud-based HR management systems is they will save your company money. Many people might look at making the move to the technology as a cost to their business, but they should look at it from the other angle.

With all the significant benefits the platform provides, your company will actually be saving money due to your processes being streamlined, while your productivity will increase as well. This is something that is extremely difficult for a company to achieve on their own in today’s ever-changing global marketplace.

That’s why it makes so much sense for companies to make the shift to cloud-based HR management systems. They alleviate the pressure of the mundane yet crucial tasks such as employee time tracking, time and attendance, employee scheduling, compliance and security, and so much more. And the best part is they allow a company to do this in a way that not only saves money but significantly increases employee productivity as well.

The secrets of unicorns: Software-as-a-Service and the billion-dollar valuation

My Post (9).pngThere is a common thread among the world’s “unicorns” (companies that have risen to a billion-dollar valuation in just a few years), which is that most unicorns operate primarily as Software-as-a-Service-based (SaaS) businesses.

This begs two questions: what has been learned by these highly successful companies, and what are the lessons for those that aspire to become unicorns themselves?

In 2018, EY conducted a survey of 200 executives with deep experience in SaaS-based operations. These are the decision-makers on SaaS — all respondents are ranked director or above, and approximately a quarter are from the C-suite. This is what we discovered.

  1. Move quickly into SaaS

Our survey executives were asked to reveal the one thing that, looking back, they would have done differently. Their foremost answer: they would have moved more quickly into SaaS (25%). At the same time, many wish that they had pivoted and innovated more quickly (13%). Another factor (10% of respondents) was to have accelerated their entry into the market with an acquisition. – Read more

Does it get progressively easier or harder to scale SaaS as your company grows?

My Post (8).pngGenerally, it gets easier to grow at a “good”/modest rate at you scale, but harder to grow at an outsize rate.

Why?

Once you cross $5m-$10m in ARR, then usually:

  • You have a brand. At least, you have a mini-brand in your niche. And that brand generates leads organically, and fairly low-cost leads. This helps a lot.
  • Renewals make things more efficient. It’s much cheaper to renew a customer than to acquire one.
  • Account expansion starts to work. The best mid-market and enterprise SaaS companies grow their accounts 120%-160% as a cohort, inclusive of churn. But, this takes a while to kick in. A couple of years, really.
  • It’s much more predictable. After $10m ARR or so, you start to have a good sense, within a range, of how you are going to do this quarter and this year.
  • Your infrastructure usually is stronger. From your technical infrastructure and platform, to your financial controls and recruiting processes … you have more people, process and technologies to scale. – Read more

The data business: What SaaS companies need to know about the risks

My Post - 2019-04-25T110831.133.jpgData monetization is the key to long-term success for many companies, not just software companies but also commercial firms such as manufacturers, retailers, banks, and insurance companies.

The philosophy towards data used to be, “Keep only what you need for as long as you need it” to avoid data-related liabilities.  Now the philosophy is “Collect and keep as much as you can for as long as you can” in case you can find a way to monetize it.

Building large repositories of third-party data opens a company to new risks.  Even though data breaches, system hacks, and cloud security issues are almost becoming the “new normal,” if your cloud-based technology or solution falls victim to any of the above, life for your company will quickly become anything but normal.

Layer on top of those risks the many regulations now being imposed by governments throughout the world, and suddenly offering cloud solutions gets really complicated.

Here’s what you need to know. – Read more