SaaS and Cloud Computing Enables Customer Self Service

The cloud has opened up previously costly software options for small companies.  Just a few years ago supply chain software was unavailable to many companies and now SaaS has enabled these companies to now compete where it was not possible before.

Now as cloud and SaaS software and services proliferate through the market by introducing new services that can be delivered through the cloud such as security as a service, administration as a service, storage and backup as well as new software such as demand planning and pointed supply chain have become common.

With applications such as TMS and WMS particularly has created an environment for companies to not only service their customers  but also it has permitted companies to be self-sufficient and require less vendor intervention.  The advent of cloud solutions is allowing companies to maximize their operations by having the software available as SaaS.  Companies know their business and what they require within their daily operations. This new functionality allows them to modify and leverage their existing carriers, suppliers, enables collaboration and can even rate shop for best prices to maximize loads by couriers, distances, routes and even be able to control the amount of volume by trailer.

By having the functionality available to optimize transportation and manage inventory options allows organizations the opportunity to  capitalize on the low point of entry making them more competitive than before and able to close the gap between larger companies and their competitors.  Self-service software has been proliferated through social media, and many enterprise software vendors have embraced this model to allow organizations an avenue to customize functionality to cater to each specific company.  ERP vendors such as Netsuite, Agresso, Plex, SAP and many others have adopted an SOA, customizable workflows, interfaces, embedded business intelligence, platforms and now enterprise software applications have the ability to adapt to customer specific needs. Companies are using cloud solutions to build the specific software functionality that they require.  As it should be, companies need to find software that fits them not what they can settle for by having to cram their business process into a software that may not fit exactly what they do.

The cloud environment, internet  and companies that provide cloud consulting have made it easier for SMB to enter the once heavy capital costs of on-premise software solutions.  By offering many options for organizations cloud solutions and service providers have provided organizations a means to evolve quickly,  can facilitate growth and endure changes business processes without major capital expense.  This allows these smaller companies to compete on an even playing field with their larger counterparts and run more efficiently which is better for the economy and business in general.

Eval-Source is an Analyst/Consulting consulting firm that offers enterprise software evaluation, cloud computing consulting, business process optimization and technology planning for organizations. Our innovative professional services combine to make your life easier whether it is to acquire enterprise software  or provide you with fact – based information to match your business with IT and to add critical decision support to your technology investments using the Tru-Eval  system.  Follow our blog at or on twitter @eval_source or our site

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Jim Love, Chief Content Officer, IT World Canada

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