Solution-as-a-Service explained: Is this the end for major IT projects?


Most technology services can be delivered via the cloud today, spawning a multitude of “as a service” offers on the market. From the mainstays like Software-as-a-Service (SaaS), to the less prevalent ones, like Database-as-a-Service (DaaS), there are just too many to keep track of.

While we don’t want to add to a never-ending list of terminology, there is one new “as-a-service” that we, at FuseForward, think is worth paying attention to—Solution-as-a Service.

What is Solution-as-a-Service?

Today’s cloud vendors typically focus their products on one layer of the cloud computing stack (IaaS, PaaS and SaaS), where they specialize (see diagram). Solution-as-a-Service is different because it delivers all aspects of cloud computing, integrated as one offer that has been optimized for a specific department or industry. The solution is then delivered through a “pay-as-you-go” model.

Because most vendors only offer one piece of the stack, IT decision-makers must purchase the components they need for cloud services separately. They are then left to manage the integrations between components themselves. In cases where a range of components are required across the full stack, such as the development of an enterprise-grade cloud environment, a major IT project is required. 

Mark Damm, FuseForward CEO and Chief Architect identifies the need for multiple integrations as a common issue encountered by Enterprise IT Teams.

“When a customer wants to move to the cloud they might purchase a range of stand-alone SaaS products, or approach an IaaS provider hoping that will solve their problems. However, they soon realize that a lot more is needed, and that’s where the need for in-house projects or system integration consultants comes into play. It can be a costly and time-consuming process,” he says.

We believe Solution-as-a-Service could spell the end for these major IT projects. Instead of hiring a system integrator or undertaking a complex in-house cloud development project, Solution-as-a-Service provides all the components required in a pay-as-you-go model.

The Benefits of Solution-as-a-Service

When it comes to enterprise cloud development, the new approach brings with it a wide range of benefits including:

  • Single point of contact: It takes a lot of different providers to run an application in the cloud. When an issue occurs, you’re left chasing multiple parties to troubleshoot the cause. With Solution-as-a-Service, you only need to deal with one provider.
  • Operations Management: Once the development work is done, the customer is usually left to operate the cloud themselves. A good Solution-as-a-Service provider will continue to proactively operate, monitor, and manage your environment for you.
  • Simplified licensing and accounting: Instead of managing multiple fees for things like software and user licences, a Solution-as-a-Service provider will consolidate everything into one payment. It makes it easier to determine exactly what your costs are, and it can also save you from disruptions or legal issues caused by expired licences.
  • Reduced project risk: With all aspects of the cloud computing stack pre-integrated, Solution-as-a-Service providers remove large IT projects from the equation. With a solution that is already tested and in use in your industry or function, you decrease project risk. 

How FuseForward Can Help

Enterprises are increasingly looking to leverage cloud infrastructure in the coming years. While the move is welcomed by many IT professionals, it also coincides with a general decrease in enterprise IT budgets—making it challenging to meet security, availability and compliance objectives. Solution-as-a-Service is the answer for those teams trying to ensure their cloud environment is secure and reliable while eliminating the need for capital expenditure.

Despite the benefits, finding a provider that delivers on the promise of “Solution-as-a-Service” is difficult. Most vendors offering “solution services” still do so through a consulting or project model, resulting in high up-front costs and the ongoing burden of maintaining a custom environment.

“FuseForward grew up as a System Integrator, so we know what is required to deliver an enterprise cloud. Instead of continuing to run complex IT projects, we’ve productized our approach. We now offer a complete solution that incorporates best-in-class components up and down the stack.” Mark says.

“As a result, our customers start their cloud migration project from a solid foundation, configuring the environment to suit their needs rather than building and integrating everything from scratch. We then continue to manage and operate the environment for a single monthly subscription fee—it is a true Solution-as-a-Service approach.”

More information

If you are struggling with complex system integration projects or looking for a way to improve your cloud development or operations, get in touch. Contact us to find out how our Solution-as-a-Service approach can streamline the delivery of your enterprise-grade cloud.

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Edrick Dudang