The SaaS market is growing rapidly, with Gartner predicting that the global SaaS market will reach $236.8 billion in 2023. The increasing popularity of cloud-based solutions is because they are more accessible and easier to use than ever before. As enterprises move away from traditional on-premise solutions and embrace the cloud, SaaS adoption is expected to continue its rapid growth.
Software as a Service (SaaS) applications remain popular due to their ease of use and cost-effectiveness. As businesses increasingly turn to the cloud to access critical software solutions that allow them to scale and innovate quickly, SaaS has become an essential part of the technology landscape.
Migration to SaaS applications is a growing trend expected to grow even more. It represents a shift in how businesses develop, market, and deliver software. Some of the factors driving the migration are:
- The fluctuating economic conditions
- Changes in the modern workforce requirements
- Escalating technology advancements
- Constantly changing competitive environment
For a successful migration, it is essential to have a roadmap. The SaaS product roadmap is the document that will guide your team through the process. It helps you have clarity about the different aspects of migration and informs the business stakeholders about the migration process.
Don’t hesitate to migrate to SaaS app, overwise you are risking losing your clients. In this article, we describe the benefits of migration, a step-by-step migration roadmap, and common models.
Understanding the SaaS Business Model
The SaaS model is where software is hosted on the cloud infrastructure. Such software is accessible to an organization through a web browser. You can access the software once a monthly subscription is paid to the SaaS solution provider.
Unlike other software, SaaS does not require an end-user license to be activated. Additionally, no infrastructure is needed to host the software. The SaaS provider hosts their subscribers on the cloud. All you need is to login into your account to get access.
Common migration models
Choosing a suitable migration model will be the key determinant of whether the process will succeed. Not all migration models will work for all organizations. Therefore, you must factor in your industry and customer needs before choosing the model. You can also choose a hybrid model instead of just one if this suits your needs better.
Some of the most common migration models are:
Silo migration model
The silo migration model is also referred to as the single-tenant model. This is the simplest model of them all. It is common because it does not require you to redesign or refactor your product; everything remains the same. You migrate the entire tech stack as it is to the cloud.
It is preferred since it is not disruptive to end users. It also offers your end-users data security and customization abilities. However, this migration model may not be suitable for large organizations in the long term.
Service-by-service migration model
This model works best for systems evolving from monolith to multi-service systems. The first step will be deciding how to distribute the system into your microservices. Once you decide on this, you can migrate to the cloud incrementally.
In this model, the best thing to do is to migrate your services from the least important one to the most important one. This will ensure that your system keeps running during the migration process. Once the migration of one service is successful, you can move to the next one and eventually to the whole system. The service-by-service model runs as a hybrid model, which means that your old system keeps running in time with your migrated services.
Benefits of app migration to SaaS
- Reduced costs – SaaS resides in a shared environment, meaning the license, installation, and maintenance costs are shared, making them lower.
- Scalability – SaaS provides businesses with the option to scale their operations. You will not need to purchase software like the traditional model; you only need to update your subscription. This makes it easier for businesses to grow.
- Easy to upgrade – In SaaS, the vendor provides the hardware and software updates. You, therefore, can access necessary upgrades with less effort and time.
Application Migration Steps to SaaS
There is no right or wrong way to move your standard application to a cloud-native SaaS. Every company embraces a technique that profits their company placement, meets their requirements, is within their budget, as well as allows a high return on their investment. But in all the distinctions, there are six key steps to follow when migrating from app to SaaS:
Software migration planning is the most important step and will involve a collaborative effort between the developers and architects. In this step, you will identify the goal of the migration and decide on the migration model to use.
Ensure that you check the project’s feasibility, i.e., if the model chosen will conform to the industry demands. Your developers will study the technical and integration requirements and code reusability, which is what determines how long the migration will take. Having a good SaaS migration plan is key to a successful migration.
This step involves analyzing if the existing architectural design will be suitable for a SaaS model. If the components of the architecture can function independently, then it means it is ideal for SaaS. If not, then you have to redesign the architecture.
When redesigning the architecture, it is best to use a proven framework since it allows you to focus on the business aspects instead of the technical aspects of SaaS solutions. Consider the following when doing architecture design; the architecture, database isolation, technology stack, tools, framework, and security.
The activities involved in this step are:
- Code scrubbing to remove the code that is not needed in the SaaS solution
- Code merging of the different codes into a single source code for the applications
- Code migration to the system
- SaaS features implementation to your code
- Integration support- this means modifying the applications so that they can be easily integrated with the existing ones
- Administration- which is the management of the applications on an Interface
Testing your application will ensure that you have seamless migration. It helps to confirm that all the features are as needed. The testing will let you know the stability of the applications and if the migration process will be successful.
Some tests you can do include functional, performance, administrative, stress, deployment, compatibility, integration, and non-functional tests.
In this step, you need to choose the deployment model to use. You can pick between vendor-managed models and buyer-managed models. Always select the model that will suit your business requirements.
Once you choose, you do capacity planning. This determines the load your server can handle at a given time. After that, you need to employ a network load balancer. The network load balancer takes care of responses and requests on the network.
Once deployment is done, you must monitor your system and check the metrics. Doing this allows you to be up to date with the end user’s demands and to detect problems early.
Migrating to SaaS has massive benefits for businesses and can provide even more opportunities. A cloud migration roadmap can help you know what is needed for the process. If the task is too daunting, engaging with a reliable cloud migration service provider can be the way to go for a seamless migration.
The suggestion to move to a SaaS platform sounds promising and sufficient to make organizations take the leap of faith. However, do not be rash to make the jump without assessing the current state of your business model.
While it is true that SaaS promises service dexterity, increased productivity, and also higher income, the migration itself can end up being a bottleneck if your organization is not in an ideal placement. On top of that, to make an enduring impact in the marketplace, you will certainly have to regard clients’ worths, maintain their commitment, as well as stay up to date with their altering needs.
Understanding your business restrictions and the obstacles you might encounter along the path of migration is an exceptional method to support your own beforehand.