When it comes to your accounting and operations software, the terms Cloud and SaaS (software as a service) are getting thrown around a lot today. Do you know what these mean? Here are some quick explanations.

Cloud
In short, cloud is someone else’s computer that you are accessing via an internet connection. That’s it. It could be accessing an application or server via a web-browser, Remote Desktop, Citrix Connection, etc. Cloud by itself doesn’t just mean browser-based sites like websites. Some programs have cloud components that plug in to a server-based program for remote staff to push and pull data.

SaaS
SaaS often gets lumped in with Cloud. SaaS is how you pay for a service. You are renting or leasing a software with a SaaS solution. SaaS solutions often seem to be more advanced because you, the customer, can leave the service when your term is up. Developers have a strong desire to keep you happy with continuous improvements. While you may have invested time and resources implementing and learning a new system, you didn’t have to make that large upfront investment for the software itself. Some SaaS applications are deployed locally, some are cloud only, and others can be deployed either way.

Cloud SaaS
When you combine Cloud and SaaS, you are just combining the subscription payment (monthly or annual are the most common) and depending on the software, it could be a server-based solution that is hosted, or could only be available in a cloud environment.

True Cloud
True Cloud is software typically only available as a subscription and is accessed via a web-browser. It’s generally delivered in the public cloud along with multi-tenancy, elastic infrastructure, high configurability, self-service expansion, and integration APIs.

Alliance Solutions Group represents software solutions that are deployed in all the ways described above. Contact us to learn more about business software technology.