The world of custom application development has evolved so much over the years, and with the ever-changing technology, custom applications are becoming more spectacular as time goes on. One of the most recent popular types of application development includes Software as a Service (SaaS), especially when partnered with various accounting applications.
Top SaaS companies
The following companies are some of the top SaaS companies in terms of both company value and market capital:
<u>Salesforce</u> – This company is the founder of SaaS, and the largest SaaS company in the world. It was formed in the United States and is famously known for its Customer Relationship Management (CRM) software.
<u>LinkedIn</u> – This is the popular social networking site for professionals all over the world.
<u>Workday</u> – This company is based in the United States, and is a cloud-based management software vendor that specializes in cloud integration applications, financial management, and human capital management.
<u>Netsuite</u> – This is a software company which offers SaaS integrated business management software.
<u>ServiceNow</u> – A popular IT service management (ITSM) software whose competitors include companies such as IBM.
<u>Concur Technologies</u> – This company specializes in travel and expense management solutions.
<u>Athenahealth</u> – This company offers software options for medical offices, such as electronic medical record services.
<u>The Ultimate Software Group</u> – This is one of the largest software companies in the world that spans over several industries, and their specialty is cloud-based human capital management (HCM) solutions.
<u>Medidata</u> – This company specializes software that manages the clinical development process.
<u>Cornerstone OnDemand</u> – This company provides cloud-based talent management solutions such as talent tracking.
There are many advantages that SaaS has over traditional software, as shown below.
What is an accounting application?
A good accounting application is essential in the accounting world. The definition of accounting application is "a software program that captures and records all accounting transactions." This type of software has many different functions which are divided into functional modules. Some examples of this include:
- Accounts receivable
- Accounts payable
- Purchase orders
- Sales orders
- General ledger
The modules which are included in accounting applications can be designed however works best for a business' particular needs. All of these modules are used as an accounting information system and works well as either online based or desktop based.
The number of global users who are utilizing both desktop and mobile applications shows that mobile applications are becoming much more popular.
SaaS vs. on premise accounting software
There are many differences between SaaS and on premise software; however, it is quite evident that SaaS accounting applications have significant advantages over on premise applications. Some of the most noticeable advantages include the following:
- <u>Lower costs</u>. A SaaS accounting application has a much lower fee when compared to on premise software because basically it is monthly, quarterly, or annual fees versus a large installation fee. The funds paid towards SaaS service includes both hosting and bandwidth costs, development, support and maintenance. So, for a business that has a tight budget, SaaS is undoubtedly the right choice. The following chart shows an example of how the costs of SaaS is more economical over time:
<u>Data protection</u>. SaaS is a much better choice when it comes to protection from email and web threats.
<u>Compatibility</u>. SaaS accounting applications is compatible with a wide range of various devises. The only thing needed in order to access the data needed is a web browser and Internet connection.
<u>Collaborative</u>. There are many different interactivity and collaboration options which makes it possible for several employees to work together on the same project simultaneously. This option makes SaaS very appealing to many organizations.
<u>Versatility</u>. One of the best options of a SaaS accounting application is the possibility to select the features that are needed. It is an added bonus that you will only need to pay for those features only. So, basically, you only pay for the features need.
<u>Customization</u>. SaaS can be customized to meet the exact needs of your business. In fact, the entire look of the software can even be customized, and not just the features.
As you can see, SaaS software applications have much more to offer than on premise accounting software. When it comes to choosing the right software for a business' needs, it is all dependent on how you need the software to function – and SaaS is the obvious best solution for your business.
It is important to remember that SaaS applications have many accounting platforms that already exist. If you don't have the time to customize, then there is probably a platform that will be the perfect fit for your business. In fact, there are hundreds of already existing accounting software products that vary in their functionality and scale.
Top accounting software products overview
Accounting software is an essential part of any business because all of the success lies in the bottom line – and that is how much money the business makes. This type of software is used companywide in order to manage a number of accounting functions such as accounts receivable, accounts payable, payroll, purchase orders, and much more. As far as the most popular accounting software programs are concerned, some examples include:
- Oracle Financials
There is a wide array of different software applications that can be used depending on specific business needs. The most popular software is QuickBooks because there are different tiers which can be included in the package.
A very popular accounting solution in the Russian Federation is 1C by 1C Company. However, despite the tremendous support for 1C, some companies still prefer developing custom systems tailored to their industry. In a recent development, Russia has passed a law that will force its citizens' personal data to be stored locally. The new law specifies: "when collecting personal data, including information and telecommunications network, the Internet, the operator must ensure that record, systemization, accumulation, storage, updated, modified, removing the personal data of citizens of the Russian Federation, in databases, of information located in the territory of the Russian Federation." The new law will be in effect as of September 1, 2016. Because of this, businesses throughout the area are working towards creating SaaS applications which will work best for their purposes, and in time for the new law to go into effect. SaaS has now become an extremely important solution in many organizations, and this is even truer now for the Russian Federation.
Why develop a custom SaaS accounting application?
The SaaS accounting applications are definitely at an advantage over on premises applications. Although there is a great variety of ready solutions in the digital market of today, it is also possible that none of the applications covers all of the business needs to the fullest. If this is a dilemma that you find yourself facing, you might want to consider developing a custom SaaS accounting application.
Before deciding whether or not it is in your best interest to customize a SaaS accounting application, it is important to first think about your business and any particular needs. The most important components of the development process include the following:
- Analytics or Specification
- Architecture & Design
- Program Code Development
- Code Documenting
- Software Test Results
- Deployment of Code on the Customer's Server
- Training (For more details please see our post about software development process https://www.issart.com/blog/know-software-development-process/)
There are many advantages for a business – especially a small to medium sized business. Not only that, but the cost is also lowered because there is only one fee at signup. In addition, maintenance is covered throughout the life if the system. The chart below shows the characteristics that contrast the traditional business model to the SaaS business model:
Where to start with custom Saas accounting application development?
After reading this, you have probably realized that obtaining a SaaS accounting application is the best option for all of your business needs. So, exactly where do you start? Even though this might seem like a daunting task, it is actually simple. Please see the following suggested steps:
- Conduct a competitors analysis, which is a marketing tool used to assess the strengths and weaknesses of your competitors.
- Define all of the business's areas of improvement and focus on them because later these will be your unique selling points.
- Gather all of the requirements and then prepare for project specification. (see more details in our software development guide http://www.issart.com/en/materials/landing/id/1)
- Pay close attention to your product promotion such as identifying your target audience, meet the audience's needs, create a call of action and choose proper communication channels, just to name a few.
For smaller businesses, they might not have an in-house team, however, there are many outsourcing companies that will be reliable to work with. Should you decide to outsource the work, it is important to keep track of the action items.
As time goes on, businesses all over the world will continue to migrate towards SaaS rather than on premises applications. In fact, it is estimated that by the end of this year, SaaS spending will exceed $22 billion. This is an increase of more than 57% from the $14 billion spent in 2012. While SaaS is a great addition for any business, it especially works well in small to medium businesses because of the cost and versatility.
Now we've got a question for you:
Are you considering developing a custom SaaS accounting application? Let us know by leaving us a quick comment right now.
Or maybe you still have some thoughts or questions left? If so, feel free to share in the comment box as well.