Before SaaS, companies were required to buy, build, and maintain all of their IT infrastructures. Each and every software solution they needed, they had to buy and maintain- no matter what the cost. Keeping up on all of the newest industry trends became not only taxing but incredibly costly as well. It was hard for companies to stay competitive because their IT budgets had to account for all of these software expenses. This all changed when SaaS became popular. But what is SaaS, exactly? And what are the real benefits?<!--read_more--> SaaS stands for software as a service and it has really caught on in recent years. SaaS was a big turning point when it came to IT for companies because no longer do companies have to buy and maintain their entire infrastructure. Companies can now plug into shared infrastructures via the internet and get all the software applications they need with less cost and less maintenance. The two biggest negatives of buying and maintaining all IT infrastructures were solved with one solution. SaaS is cloud based, versus on premise. This is why the connectivity is so straightforward. SaaS is made available to customers over a network- usually the internet. A perk of this model is global accessibility. You can access your software anywhere, anytime. A common fear when turning to a SaaS provider is about owning data. When you put your data on the cloud through a SaaS provider, you still own your data 100%, just as you did before. Automatic updates and patch management comes standard with SaaS. Because of this, all users who connect to an application through SaaS will have the same version of the software. Compatibility issues are erased. You no longer have to maintain your own software, taking time from other business critical tasks. Why do we love SaaS? To put it simply- it’s simple. SaaS deployment is a carefree and cost effective way to stay on trend. To take it to the next step, iPaaS, or integrated platform as a service, takes those SaaS solutions and integrates them. The subscription model that SaaS has still stands, but now all of those solutions can be accessed and integrated from one hub. The benefits of integrating your solutions are numerous and they start with business intelligence. The business intelligence, reporting, and analytics made possible through iPaaS providers is an absolute game changer. Making more informed, and therefore, better business decisions, has the ability to carry your business to the next level of success and earning. The big data collected through the many channels possible does you no good if you cannot apply it. Business Intelligence through integration on an integration platform does just that- it helps you apply your big data by making sense of it all. SaaS has opened the door to a whole new way of acquiring the business essential applications of your industry. SaaS has the ability to be the foundation for better ways to do business in the coming years.