In the past, government operations relied solely on manpower. Everything was done manually, with no technology to build on or to store documents and more. Today, digital transformation has touched virtually every industry; however, the government is still a step behind.
To alleviate this lag, many agencies are starting to partner with SaaS (software as a service) companies. This is giving governments the unique opportunity to reduce their administrative costs while providing more services to their constituents.
What is SaaS?
SaaS is a method of software delivery allowing users to access data from any device that has a web browser and an internet connection. With this method in place, software vendors host and maintain the code, databases, and servers that make up an application.
This is a massive departure from the prior on-premise software delivery model that most government agencies used in the past (and that many still use today). With SaaS, companies don’t have to invest in hardware for hosting their software, which allows buyers to outsource IT responsibilities for maintenance purposes.
3 Ways SaaS is the Future of Government Technology
The federal government is not immune to the growth and evolution of technology. Three ways that show how and why SaaS is the future of government technology can be found here.
1. SaaS is Easy to Customize
There are many government websites and systems that suffer from inflexible designs. With modern SaaS applications, it’s possible to support simple application configuration. This means that end users can adjust the parameters that will impact the functionality of the system.
2. SaaS Products are Continually Optimized
A huge benefit of adopting SaaS in the government is the fact that these applications are updated more frequently than traditional software that is still used by most agencies and organizations. This ensures that new features and significant upgrades are available as quickly as possible.
Because the software is housed on a server, which is controlled by the vendor, it can be upgraded centrally. This is opposed to the traditional model, where the software being used would have to be upgraded on every single machine that uses it. What this means is that SaaS is easily maintained and all upgrades can be made instantaneously with the latest version at the source. This helps save those using this model both time and money.
3. SaaS Products Can be Easily Integrated with Existing Systems
While there are more than a few reasons that companies and organizations are transferring to web-based applications, the fact is that this transition is one that has been complicated for governments. This is mainly due to the use of legacy systems. These outdated systems hold quite a bit of data and information.
Integrating a new system means that all the information has to be migrated over from the former system, which can be a huge challenge.
When it comes to the migration process, there are two basic options that government agencies can opt for:
- Using a cloud server built from scratch
- Existing application migration “as is” to the cloud
With SaaS, the components are adaptable and flexible, which makes this migration fast and easy, minimizing the stress and hassle it may otherwise present.
While the federal government has been slow to adopt SaaS technology due to perceived challenges, the fact is that this process is not only worthwhile, it can also lead to huge cost and time savings benefits in the long run. It is something that government agencies should begin doing today to see all the benefits SaaS has to offer.