Posted by: @spdlm | 02 Mar 11

Un-SaaS banks

“We have some software for you”

Our bank manager proudly announced that they have a competitively priced bundle of business software. Accounting, payroll, business plan etc etc. For £35 a month, it seemed like a good deal. It was not what it seemed at all. First of all, that monthly price does not mean the software is provided as a service (SaaS). Secondly, it was only available for the non-Mac operating system…

Uselessly good deal

So Un-SaaS

I felt nostalgic when I took the box back to desk, thinking perhaps I could use this irresistible software bundle on my Mac using Parallel. Yes, I am a man and I am prone to impulse buying. Thank goodness for the generous 7 day trial period they gave me. The box was returned to the Bank within 3 days. I simply could not be bothered to start-up Windows just to enter my receipts. I was a little ashamed to have taken it home in the first place. The story begins here though.

“I think you guys should think SaaS”

That’s what I said to the bank manager when I returned the software box after explaining that I could not use the bundle as I am a Mac user. The first reaction was, very polite attempt to make the situation a little humorous. She said, “we are not as cool and technical as you are sir.” The last time I used Windows, I had to remember years of my experience using it to get the work done. What is she talking about? I repeated my statement again; “I think you guys should think about getting these software in the cloud”. Bank manager repeats; “We only have the bundle available in Window version.” …O.K….. It was a kind of a situation where we both stared into each other’s faces trying to figure out if we are understanding each other’s statement. I didn’t want to appear rude by suggesting that she did not understand the difference between Could (SaaS) and SaaP, and I think she didn’t want to offend the poor innocent Mac user.

SaaS makes 100% sense

The first time I was introduced to the notion of SaaS was circa 1998 when a Computer Physics graduate mate of mine predicted that future software will be browser based. I remember thinking, I need a faster modem. Here in 2011, I am deep into the SaaS business. It makes perfect sense for me to be as SaaS as possible because SaaS;

  • does not discriminate (Mac, Windows etc)
  • is always upgraded/updated
  • is often far more intuitive to use
  • is cheaper

So if anyone offers me any SaaP (Software as a Product), please forgive me for looking at you rather unfavourably. Thankfully, the earlier predictions that SaaS era will end quickly (“Has SaaS already become passe?”) has not been realised and I continue to promote SaaS over SaaP. Funny then, that I still prefer to buy CDs.


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