The evolving role of IT in SaaS management

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One question was inevitably bound to arise with the proliferation of SaaS within organizations- whether lines of business or IT should have ‘ownership’ of SaaS applications.  Which raises another question – what actually does ‘ownership’ of SaaS applications mean?  Without the need to manage, maintain and support on-premise applications, SaaS ‘ownership’ is less about managing the software life cycle, and more about ensuring that SaaS procurement, management and usage is consistent with corporate policies.  An interesting article appeared recently in SearchSMB exploring the role that IT is playing in SaaS procurement and management.

While business units typically have had free reign over SaaS deployments, evidence is starting to suggest that the pendulum is starting to swing towards greater IT involvement. A recent survey by Saugatuck Technology cited in the article shows that while 36% of organizations procure SaaS apps with no IT involvement, 24% require SaaS products to conform to pre-established guidelines from IT, and 44% require review by joint business/IT oversight committees. And why is IT increasingly feeling the need to get involved?

  • Integration – while business units have been happy to procure SaaS at will, IT is starting to be pulled in when business units realize the need for their SaaS application to integrate with data and/or applications that reside on-premise or with another 3rd party vendor. Many IT teams are only now finding out (the hard way) how broadly SaaS has penetrated their organizations and business processes.
  • Security and compliance – organizations are rapidly realizing the need for their SaaS and web-based applications to adhere to corporate access control, security and compliance policy requirements. Many organizations are increasingly looking to IT to ensure that SaaS usage in their environment is consistent with the policies and controls they’ve developed for traditional on-premise applications.

You can read the complete article here.

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One Response to “The evolving role of IT in SaaS management”

  1. mebc Says:

    SaaS vendors will get their arms around sensitive data store on their servers… but what about client side? Many SaaS products leave significant data artifacts around on the client PCs: cookies, browser cache, as well as end users potentially saving sensitive data. This may not be an issue for some SaaS apps or when an employee is accessing a CRM or HR app from a company computer… but what happens to data when accessing from a home PC or kiosk? What happens to the app data delivered & rendered in the browser’s cache?

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