Event: Janney Software & Service Conference
I was recently invited by Sasa Zorovic, Managing Director and Senior Software Analyst at Janney Montgomery Scott to attend their "Software and Service" conference in New York and participated on a panel titled "Best Practices in SaaS."
13 November 2009
I was recently invited by Sasa Zorovic, Managing Director and Senior Software Analyst at Janney Montgomery Scott to attend their "Software and Service" conference in New York and participated on a panel titled "Best Practices in SaaS." Other panel participants included the CEOs of other SaaS or SaaS investment companies including Advent Software, Internet Capital Group and Management Dynamics. It was really energizing to be in the company of CEOs that share the same passion, energy and commitment to bring real and immediate value to customers through a SaaS-based software and delivery model! The panel prior to ours titled "Cloud 9: Getting there..." had a mixture of CEOs and CFOs from some well known SaaS companies including NetSuite, RightNow, SuccessFactors and Convio. There were several highlights I’d like to share from both of these panel discussions.
- First, the cloud has been and will continue to be disruptive. Delivering Software as a Service remains as relevant as ever, especially in an economic upturn when companies are looking to grow their businesses but want to do so in a more productive, efficient and cost effective manner.
- Second, those SaaS companies who have built their SaaS software architectures from the ground up have a significant lead over premise-based software companies that are attempting to take premise-based software architectures and deploy them using a SaaS model. In the example of Intralinks, there was recognition from the audience that it would be impossible to address many of the business processes that transcend firewalls (e.g. between two or more different businesses) with ECM and collaboration products from the leading premise-based providers.
- Third, as SaaS software architectures mature, SaaS companies are learning how to leverage their “best practice” of keeping a single code base while providing APIs and SDKs to support meaningful integration with premise-based software applications. Advent Software and Management Dynamics discussed how they’ve figured out ways to keep customers on a common code base while meeting the integration needs of their enterprise customers. Intralinks released its third generation SaaS architecture twelve months ago and have leveraged our API to help our customers integrate Intralinks with their premise-based software investments.
- Fourth — and in my view the most important — point is that all of us are focused on building SaaS offerings that are client focused, easy to use (e.g. enabling fast adoption) and provide quick yet long lasting wins for customers.
All of these factors have allowed SaaS companies to grow moderately in what has been a challenging economic cycle for premise-based software companies for the last twelve months. As the economy stabilizes further in the 2nd half of 2009 and as we look toward 2010 with optimism, I’m excited about the opportunities for Intralinks and our peer SaaS companies as together we continue to bring real value to our customers in a rapid and cost-effective manner.