This is part one of five in a series exploring the benefits of Software as a Service, or SaaS.
Software as a Service, or SaaS, is a software delivery method designed to deliver software over the internet using a web browser. While SaaS offers several benefits, one of the most notable features of SaaS is its ability to significantly reduce costs for libraries. SaaS manages to do this in several ways:
- Traditional software delivery models, such as licensing agreements, require libraries to make a large initial investment for implementation and software. Conversely, SaaS requires users to pay a fixed, annual fee- this option tends to be much more manageable for libraries.
- Under traditional licensing agreement models, it is necessary to pay an additional annual free for support and maintenance. This fee is meant to cover minor enhancements and bugs, but costs can add up for libraries on a limited budget.
- When libraries access software through a licensing agreement model, technical staff is tasked with updating the data center and pushing the new version of software to all workstations whenever a new version of software is available. Not only can this process by time-intensive, but libraries must cover the costs of all data center necessities, including servers to run the ILS and back-up and redundancy plans
Ultimately, because a SaaS delivery model requires the SaaS provider manages the IT infrastructure, libraries are able to free up valuable resources. However, reduced costs aren’t the only benefits of SaaS- stay tuned as we continue to look at how SaaS can benefit your library.
Does your library use SaaS? Why or why not?