In today's marketplace there continues to be a growing reliance on web-based
solutions for driving collaboration to conduct business activities within a
mobilized and decentralized workforce. Business is no longer just conducted
in one physical building, but spans across many people in multiple locations
-- including on-the-road sales teams, employees working at home, and even business
partners that are located across the globe.
That's why web conferencing and other virtual collaboration solutions will
continue to grow, especially since conferencing has become the glue that bonds
dispersed enterprise teams in a global economy. However, when businesses decide
to deploy web conferencing, or any other technology solution, there is an important
technical question they must first answer. Where will the software live?
Of course the technology options in the market today allow companies to either
have their Web conference software code to reside on the vendor's server, commonly
know as the SaaS option, or to house the software on their own internal server
by taking the On Premise installation route.
Within each of these options are advantages and disadvantages that organizations
need to be aware of so that they make the right comparisons and ultimately the
best educated decision on which option is ideal for their business model.
One of the key advantages of deploying conferencing and collaboration solutions
as a SaaS option is that it is extremely easy. Most hosted technologies can
be downloaded and accessed by employees across an entire organization within
just a few minutes.
The timeliness and ease of deployment offers a very attractive advantage to
organizations that want a quick-fix conferencing solution that does not weigh
down or require large IT resources. However, SaaS comes with some key hindrances
like ongoing monthly fees, access security concerns, integration with other
enterprise applications/sites and limits on customization that companies need
to take into account.
Ongoing monthly fees can be a key concern for those organizations looking to
carefully manage an already tight budget. For example, a mid-sized organization
that uses a hosted conferencing solution can easily experience thousands of
dollars in monthly fees which could significantly impact the organizations'
overall telecom spend for the year.