A SaaS management platform enables IT operations administrators to effectively manage daily operations for any SaaS application they frequently use, with Google G Suite and Microsoft Office 365 being two of the most popular.
SaaS management platforms allow IT, administrators, to manage their application policies, automate IT admin tasks, track application usage, and take corrective action.
In simple terms, they help businesses understand which SaaS applications are being used, how they are being used, and who can access them.
With that being said, in this blog post, we will look at some of the different benefits you can expect if you use tools for SaaS management. This will help you better understand whether or not this makes sense for your business.
Lower your expenses with a SaaS management platform
There is only one place to begin, and this is by lowering your expenses. Businesses are looking to commit more of their budget to SaaS every year. Companies now have many different cloud tools within their SaaS stack, with some having over 100.
No one is denying that SaaS can bring many benefits. Nevertheless, SaaS spending quickly becomes a compounding problem that is often overlooked within a business. Up to 30 percent of a business’ yearly SaaS spend goes to waste.
For a typical company in the United States with 800 people, this translates to in excess of $4m lost per year. This is where a SaaS management platform shows its true worth.
For example, if you have subscriptions that are dormant yet you are still paying for them on a monthly basis, a SaaS management platform can help you to determine this. You can then take the required action, for example, cancel the subscription so that you can ensure you are not wasting money.
Compliance is one area whereby businesses simply cannot afford to cut corners. Regulations like CCPA and GDPA have stringent data protection provisions in place.
As a third-party data processor, a SaaS app will need to ensure it adheres to all of these provisions.
Should your workers utilize a non-compliant application, they could compromise the compliance of your business. If the data controller does not know about this data, then it is not going to be adhering to the GDPR obligations.
How can a company honor a consumer’s request to delete all of its data if it does not know that one of its Account Managers has a copy of the file on his or her Google Drive?
This is particularly the case for regulated companies, whereby the utilization of shadow technology can result in significant fines if you are in violation of compliance requirements.
Control over security is not going to be possible if you do not even know what apps you need to monitor and audit.
Make sure your organization is secure
This is related to the former point about compliance. It is not a surprise to see that SaaS security problems have increased in correlation with near-universal SaaS adoption.
As we have already touched upon, with SaaS Products being pretty straightforward from a deployment standpoint, individual business units within a business can typically procure them without security teams or IT departments needing to provide oversight.
According to a study that was sponsored by McAfee and carried out by Frost & Sullivan, over 80 percent of respondents utilized non-approved SaaS apps in their jobs.
As we have clearly stated, control over security cannot be achieved if you are not even aware of the apps that need to be audited and monitored.
A SaaS management platform will notify you immediately of all of the new corporate SaaS applications in your ecosystem. These apps can be vetted, and access can be terminated if they do not pass compliance and security standards.
Define access and administration controls
A successful SaaS management platform gives you the ability to define policies with regard to who has specific access to different resources and SaaS tools, and which level that access should entail.
The SaaS management platform should enable you to enforce these policies with ease.
This gives you greater peace of mind that no one has access to the data that should not have access. Plus, you can revoke access with great ease as well.
In some cases, when teams use certain SaaS applications for the first time, all users begin with full privilege, meaning they can access all of the features the software provides.
Nevertheless, different members of the team need to be assigned the functionality that fits into their roles, without needing access to all of the other features.
A simple example of this in your day-to-day operations is when you share a Google Document with people. You may provide some people with “edit” access whereas others are only given “view only” access. It is the same sort of principle when it comes to all of the SaaS tools you use.
For instance, you would not want your design team’s end users to be able to amend the billing data on your software contracts, would you?
Understand your SaaS footprint
Another reason why a SaaS management platform comes highly recommended for your business is that it will provide you with the space you need to truly comprehend which cloud and SaaS services are being used by your employees across all departments and teams.
This gives you complete transparency. You will be able to see whether these tools fall into the realm of shadow IT or whether they have been approved by your IT department.
When you have full clarity, and you are able to see the entire picture, you have the added benefit of being able to pinpoint any potential overlap between SaaS applications being utilized within the business to determine if there is a possibility for consolidation.
You can also discover whether there are any possible security risks and understand which SaaS applications pose the greatest risk. You can also determine how much of your SaaS budget you are spending on these tools and other cloud services.
Ensure there is complete transparency
The right SaaS management platform makes it possible for you to manage all of your SaaS subscriptions and contracts in one place,
Not only does this mean that it is easy for you to track how much of your budget you are spending on SaaS services and applications, but it also demonstrates a way of consolidating contracts and subscriptions where there could be an overlap.
If you have a central location that stores all vendor contracts, it means other people are going to know where to look. When this happens, you can easily:
- Update business leaders of any changes to SaaS licenses and tools that are needed
- Ensure you do not get stuck with contracts you are not interested in renewing
- Avoid missing the notice of renewal for cancellation dates
- Notify owners of cancellations or renewals
- Locate and assign owners to different contracts
This is particularly beneficial if you consider that more and more company teams are buying SaaS tools, so the chance of overlooking a license is higher than it ever has been before.
With that also comes the heightened importance of being fully aware of any approaching renewal notices, meaning you can give the correct notification if you are not interested in renewing a license for a further term.
Maintain a system of record
Another advantage associated with SaaS management platforms is that they give your company the ability to maintain a comprehensive and complete record of who has access to which services and applications, as well as how they are being used.
This means you will have the ability to see that a member of your marketing team has used a custom password to log in only ‘x’ amount of times in the past month.
You can also see that the head of your marketing department has used SSO to access a project collaboration tool ‘x’ times in the past week.
You get the picture!
When you have the ability to determine who has access and how they are logging into these tools, there are many benefits you can reap.
You will be able to remain cost-effective, automate employee offboarding, reduce security risks, and stay compliant.
Reap the benefits of a SaaS management platform
As you can see, there are many benefits associated with SaaS management platforms. From keeping your organization secure to reducing costs, there are lots of advantages to reap.
Of course, to leverage these benefits you need to make sure you choose a SaaS management platform with care. Make sure the solution is right for your business. Consider everything from the features provided to the reviews left by others.
Vladimir is a software tester who has been working in the industry for over 10 years. He has a lot of knowledge and experience to share, and he loves to help others learn and grow in their careers. In his free time, he enjoys reading, playing chess and spending time with his family.
Vladimir is a professional who tests computer software for defects and usability. He works in the software development life cycle to find and report problems with the software and is often involved in manual or automated testing.
As a software tester, Vladimir plays an important part in the software development process because he ensures that the software is defect-free and meets the needs of the end users. He understands this fact and writes about the role of software testing in his articles in Software Tested.