Small Businesses Create Customer Intimacy with SaaS: Improving Productivity and Competitiveness with Software-as-a-Service Applications

Ed Lucente is a Sr. Product Marketing Manager at AT&T. You can find more blog content from Ed and other experts on emerging technologies on the AT&T Networking Exchange Blog. AT&T has sponsored the following blog post.

Software-as-a-Service in the CloudBefore the advent of cloud services, IT was managed ad hoc by small businesses (less than 250 PCs). This included tasks like on-premise server installations and maintenance, software upgrades, database administration, network management, and backups. Small businesses faced difficult IT challenges related to increasing operating expenses, unending complexity, and a lack of trained resources. IT management and costs distracted small businesses from focusing on building better solutions for customers. Fortunately though, Software-as-a-Service (SaaS) applications have changed this malaise. Today, SaaS services are allowing small businesses to increase productivity and competitiveness, reduce IT costs, and develop solutions that create customer intimacy.

Productivity and Competitiveness

A survey commissioned by Microsoft showed that of the small businesses that use the cloud, 41% said they were able to employ more staff in roles that directly benefit sales or business growth, 39% invest in more product development or innovation, and 37% experienced improved agility and competitiveness. The cloud has made it easier for small businesses to scale their business to explore new markets, according to 42% of respondents. And 52% said that using the cloud enabled them to add new solutions and services that benefit their business more quickly and securely.  Read More