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Accounting & billing fastest growing area for SaaS utilization

Investment Bank, Goldman Sachs, has released a new technology report emailed to subscribers last week, titled 'Techtonics: Unstoppable shift to SaaS continues'. It confirms the rise in popularity of SaaS and highlights the areas where utilization is increasing. The diagram below shows that accounting and billing is the 3rd most popular area for SaaS adoption at 49%. Interestingly, the report also says that it has been the biggest growth area since April 2009 at 20%, ahead of call center automation and eRecruitment.

cnet.com covers the report and provides a few highlights: •"An "SaaS first" policy is being enacted in the majority of small and midsize businesses. Goldman's survey highlights that 58 percent of respondents always consider an SaaS option when making an application purchase decision. At total of 39 percent prefer an SaaS option, if available. •Web conferencing and sales force automation continue to rank as the most utilized SaaS applications; accounting and billing shows significant improvement, underscoring broad acceptance in all application areas. Accounting and billing, call center automation, and eRecruiting were the largest gainers, with 20 percent, 18 percent, and 17 percent increases, respectively, from April 2009.

  • Data warehousing, supply chain management, and product life cycle management require more customization, or are more embedded within the core of a company than cloud applications. They are also utilized by a smaller group of individuals, which could impact the time to, or volume of, deployments.
  • Amazon.com is used by 67 percent of the survey respondents. It is clearly the out-in-front leader, despite being a "newcomer" to enterprise IT. For internal clouds, VMware's leadership remains pronounced, with 83 percent of respondents using its virtualization technology.
  • Platform-as-a-service layers are gaining momentum, dominated by Amazon's Elastic Compute Cloud, or EC2, service, with 77 percent of respondents choosing EC2 as a preferred partner, well ahead of Google
  • Forty percent of respondents indicated that they would be more likely to use SaaS solutions in a weaker economy, due to perceived total cost of ownership (TCO) benefits.
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