SaaS Survey: Software as a Service Usage in the Enterprise

Comparing a SaaS survey from 2008 with a 2020 cloud adoption survey, shows that businesses are increasingly using cloud and SaaS for their software solution needs.

The chart shown here is from a 2020 O'Reilly survey of what their readers were doing with cloud, microservices, and other critical infrastructure and operations technologies.

SaaS Adoption in 2008

Baseline reported on the results of an Enterprise SaaS Survey conducted by Burton Group and Ziff Davis. They interviewed 252 CIOs who were using SaaS. The CIOs confirmed "that SaaS delivers robust applications - typically at a lower cost."

Some other results from the survey:

  • 67% of those using SaaS have been doing so for more than two years, so these were IT users who have had the opportunity to fully try out and use their SaaS solutions;
  • 76% had a positive enough experience that they plan to expand the use of SaaS within their businesses;
  • 65% reported that SaaS lowered their software costs compared to in-house applications, although still a little over 20% continue to express concern over the long-term costs of SaaS;
  • 57% said they were more satisfied with SaaS than their other in-house applications;
  • The main issues they encountered were (1) the lack of access when users are offline, and (2) the application being less customizable than the in-house option;
  • Before implementing SaaS, they anticipated more information security risks, but they did not end up experiencing as much risk in this space as they had expected at the beginning;
  • Most preferred a flat-fee enterprise payment on a monthly or quarterly basis, rather than by user or usage (of course, this is going to depend greatly on the application...).

With the growing adoption, albeit still limited in 2008, of SaaS solutions in the enterprise, many software vendors were considering how this new delivery model should impact their business strategy moving forward.

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2020 SaaS Survey

O'Reilly's 2020 SaaS survey shows that many more businesses are now using cloud, whether private SaaS or public cloud infrastructure.  You can read the full O'Reilly survey results here.

O'Reilly surveyed almost 2,000 business users, and found that almost 90% of them were using cloud / SaaS solutions. In addition, the respondents indicated they would be further increasing their usage of cloud over time.  In fact, 17% of enterprise (large business) users said their company would be soon using 100% cloud software solutions.

If you sell software or services, and have not yet planned your SaaS or cloud strategy, now is the time to give it some serious thought and work on updating that business plan.