Enterprise Software and Cloud Computing Blog

Enterprise Software, Necessary Evil or Saving Grace?

Nathan Joyes |

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As printed in the Spring 2012 issues of TheFranchiseVoice, Volume 13, Issue 2



Success rates for traditional enterprise software implementations are abysmal, yet all but the smallest franchise systems rely on enterprise software to be successful.  Should we just resign to the fact that enterprise software is a necessary evil that must be endured?  In the past, you may have been tempted to do so, but today there is a whole new breed of cost-effective enterprise software that is offering new hope.  In fact, through resulting cost reductions and increased purchasing rebates, enterprise software may actually be the saving grace for franchise systems during difficult economic conditions. 


 How Traditional Enterprise Software Measures Up

















































































Metric



Traditional Enterprise Software



Software as a Service (SaaS)



Pricing



large upfront capital investment in software



all-inclusive, predictable monthly subscription
expense



Routine Updates



purchased from vendor by contract or per update



all routine updates are included in subscription fee



Program Maintenance



deployed by client to affected local servers and
clients



automatic program updates managed entirely by vendor



Technical Support



purchased by contract or paid per incident



unlimited technical support included in subscription
fee



Infrastructure



costly standalone server hardware and server
software



multi-tenant infrastructure managed by vendor



Communication



costly and slow document printing for direct mail



electronic communication by EDI, or email



Reliability



varies with backup/restore procedures and in-house
skills



professional maintenance included in subscription
fee



Security



depends on skill-set of internal IT compared with
hackers



regularly tested for threats and vulnerabilities



Scalability



increase in usage requires costly hardware upgrades



add users or increase transactions at any time



Availability



downtime can last for days depending on the problem



24x7 network monitoring included in subscription fee



Accessibility



only internal employees and some limited remote
access



staff and business partner access from anywhere



Accountability



no vendor obligation after initial implementation



vendor must continually ‘earn’ the subscription fee



Accuracy



information is often posted daily or weekly



information is updated in real-time



Learning Curve



proprietary interfaces with steep learning curve



standard html web pages with very little training
required




The new breed of enterprise software has been written from the ground up to take advantage of cloud computing.  Cloud computing is the practice of using a network of remote servers hosted on the Internet to store, manage, and process data, rather than a local server.  At this point, you may be thinking that sounds a lot like a website and wondering what all the cloud computing hype is all about.



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