In today’s world of IT, there are many factors that an organization must consider in order to decide whether a cloud infrastructure is the right fit. Conversely, there are many organizations that are unable make the leap into the cloud, instead relying on their tried-and-true legacy and on-premise applications and software to do business.

On Premise vs. SaaS

It’s no surprise that software as a service has grown in popularity as much as it has, as its allure and promise offer newfound flexibility, everything from saving time and money to improving agility and scalability. On the other hand, on-premise software – installed on an organizations own servers and behind its firewall – was the only offering for organizations for a long time and may continue to adequately serve your needs (think, “if it ain’t broke then don’t fix it”). Additionally, on-premise applications are reliable, secure, and allow municipalities to maintain a level of control that the cloud often cannot. But there’s agreement among IT decision-makers that in addition to their on-premise and legacy systems, they’ll need to leverage new cloud and SaaS applications to achieve their business goals.

On-Premise Software

Whether a municipality places its applications in the cloud or whether it decides to keep them on premises, data security will always be paramount. But for those in highly regulated communities, the decision might already be made for them as to whether to house their applications on premise. And knowing your data is located within your in-house servers and IT infrastructure might also provide more peace of mind.

On-premise software requires the purchase of a license or a copy of the software to use it. Because the software itself is licensed and the entire instance of software resides within an organization’s premises, there is generally greater protection than with a cloud computing infrastructure. So, if an organization needs all this extra security, why would they dip its proverbial toes into the cloud?

The downside of on-premise environments is that costs associated with managing and maintaining all the solution entails can run exponentially higher than a cloud computing environment. An on-premise setup requires in-house server hardware, software licenses, integration capabilities, and IT employees on hand to support and manage potential issues that may arise. This doesn’t even factor in the amount of maintenance that a company is responsible for when something breaks or doesn’t work.

Software as a Service (SaaS)

Cloud computing differs from on-premises software in one critical way. Running applications from a cloud environment. BMSI hosts its latest applications for you. Accessible through any major web browser. This allows organizations to effectively scale up or down depending on overall usage, user requirements, and the growth of the organization.

A cloud-based server utilizes virtual technology to host applications offsite. There are no capital expenses, data can be backed up regularly, and organizations only have to pay for the resources they use.

Additionally, cloud computing features nearly instant provisioning because everything is already accessible. Thus, any community can get started immediately once they have subscribed. With instant provisioning, any time spent on installation is eliminated and users are able to access the application right away.

Key Differences of On Premise vs. Software as a Service

As outlined above, there are a number of fundamental differences between an on-premise software and a cloud hosted application. Which path is the correct one for your organization depends entirely on your needs.

Deployment

On Premises: In an on-premises environment, resources are deployed in-house and within an organization’s IT infrastructure. That organization is responsible for maintaining the solution and all its related processes.

Software as a Service (SaaS): In a public cloud computing environment, resources are hosted on the premises of the service provider but organizations are able to access their applications and use as much as they want at any given time.

Cost

On Premises: For organizations that deploy software on premise, they are responsible for the ongoing costs of the server hardware, power consumption, and space.

SaaS: Organizations that elect to use a SaaS cloud computing model only need to pay for the resources that they use, with none of the maintenance and upkeep costs.

Control

On Premises: In an on-premises environment, organizations retain all their data and are fully in control of what happens to it, for better or worse. Organizations in highly regulated communities with extra privacy concerns are more likely to hesitate to leap into the cloud before others because of this reason.

SaaS: In a SaaS cloud computing environment, the question of ownership of data is one that many organizations – and vendors for that matter, must define. Data and encryption keys reside within your solution provider, so if the unexpected happens and there is downtime, you maybe be unable to access that data.

Security

On Premises: Organizations that have extra sensitive information, must have a certain level of security and privacy that an on-premises environment provides. Despite the promise of the cloud, security is the primary concern for many industries, so an on-premises environment, despite some if its drawbacks and price tag, make more sense.

SaaS: Security concerns remain the number one barrier to a cloud computing deployment. There have been many publicized cloud breaches, and IT departments around the world are concerned. From personal information of employees such as login credentials to a loss of intellectual property, the security threats are real.

Compliance

On Premises: Many organizations these days operate under some form of regulatory control. Perhaps the most common one is the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA) for private health information, but there are many others, including the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA), which contains detailed student records, and other government and industry regulations. For organizations that are subject to such regulations, it is imperative that they remain compliant and know where their data is at all times.

SaaS: Organizations that do choose a SaaS cloud computing model must do their due diligence and ensure that their third-party provider is up to code and in fact compliant with all of the different regulatory mandates within their industry. Sensitive data must be secured, and customers, partners, and employees must have their privacy ensured.

BMSI Solutions

In our industry we understand the importance to provide comprehensive solutions to rise and meet the needs of complex organizational standards. Regardless of what options fit your organization the best we have the solution for you.

Contact one of our sales associated to learn more about how you can better server your community. Email: sales@bmsi-fund.com Phone: 1-800-603-5578 ext: 2