Are Businesses Ready for Everything as a Service?
If we were to guess, you’ve at least used Google Docs or Microsoft Office 365 recently. Maybe you’ve also used Adobe Creative Cloud, Dropbox or Slack. Likewise, many businesses use products like Salesforce, Zendesk, Docusign, Hubspot, and many other on-demand solutions.
In fact, these Software-as-a-Service (SaaS) platforms are becoming one of the most popular ways for users to access software, products, and services that previously required on-premises installations. In addition, many other solutions and tools are also made available using this “as-a-Service” business model and you’ve probably heard of Platform-as-a-Service (PaaS), Infrastructure-as-a-Service (IaaS), and the like.
Now, there’s a newer category that encompasses all the tools and solutions that are made available to users as a service over the internet – Everything-as-a-Service or XaaS. In this post, we’ll look at what it is and what its benefits are in more detail.
What Is Everything-as-a-Service?
Everything-as-a-Service or XaaS is a wide-ranging term that refers to any tools, services, platforms, or other software that you can access and is delivered over the internet. So, in simple terms, it refers to the “as-a-Service” model of delivering almost everything.
In addition to the SaaS, PaaS, and IaaS offerings mentioned earlier, some of the other common and popular types of XaaS include:
- Storage-as-a-Service (StaaS)
- Database-as-a-Service (DBaaS)
- Disaster-Recovery-as-a-Service (DRaaS)
- Communications-as-a-Service (CaaS)
- Network-as-a-Service (NaaS)
- Data-as-a-Service (DaaS)
What Are the Benefits of XaaS?
When using a XaaS model, there are several benefits for businesses, both large and small. Some of the most significant of these benefits include:
- Reduces costs. In contrast to traditional software, hardware, or infrastructure that often required a substantial investment upfront, businesses can reduce costs by using these products and services on a subscription basis.
- Improves agility. XaaS provides businesses with the software and services they need quickly and easily. As such, they have access to the technologies that allow them to adapt to evolving customers’ demands and changing market conditions quicker.
- Frees up IT resources. When using XaaS products, on-site IT teams don’t have to maintain and update software, hardware, or infrastructure. This frees up their time to rather focus on higher-value projects and innovation.
- Improves productivity. With XaaS, businesses can find the right products for their specific needs and requirements and they’re able to shift to other products as these needs and requirements change. As a result, businesses can ensure that their teams are as productive as possible.
- Better security. Nowadays, cybersecurity is vital. XaaS providers have all the necessary measures and strategies in place to ensure their customers’ data stays safe. In most cases, these measures are better than those companies themselves can implement.
Although XaaS offers several benefits as described above, there are some downsides, though. For one, it’s a fact that the internet goes down from time to time. So, if either a business’s or the XaaS provider’s network goes down, it impacts the usability of the product. Fortunately, some providers guarantee uptime through service-level agreements.
Another drawback is that data storage and retrieval rates, latency, and bandwidth can become slow as a XaaS product becomes more popular. Also, because businesses will likely use multiple XaaS products, integration, which give businesses access to their data across services and platform, might become challenging.
Finally, although using XaaS services can free up IT resources as mentioned earlier, they could be harder to troubleshoot if something goes wrong. As a result, IT teams still need to spend some time to stay up-to-date with the relevant platform or service to ensure that the service always runs as it should.
The Bottom Line
XaaS products and services offer businesses of any size a variety of benefits, not least of which is the ability to save costs and be more agile, two capabilities that are extremely important in a competitive market. We hope this post helped illustrate what XaaS is and what its benefits and drawbacks are.