How to Fail Miserably as a Cloud Software Provider


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The supply side economics of the software business have changed. While many cloud solutions and services can provide a lower capital investment in moving applications to the cloud, the ongoing costs of operating as a SaaS provider are often overlooked. Software companies still face many challenges today in moving to the SaaS business model, and transforming their business to one of ongoing service delivery. This presentation will explore the key business and technical ingredients for success as a SaaS provider, and you’ll learn why architecture still reigns in the Cloud.

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  • Intro… what you’re going to talk about.. etc
  • Talk about history… genesis of the SaaSGrid idea…some team member examples…etc
  • Our mission and focus as a company is SaaS enablement. Pure and simple.As such, our product offering, SaaSGrid, is focused on solving 3 problems…
  • Just so we’re all on the same page with what we’re defining as a “Cloud Software Provider” for the purposes of the discussion…
  • Moving from selling software to delivering it
  • You can put your app in the cloud… but
  • How to Fail Miserably as a Cloud Software Provider

    1. 1. How to Fail Miserably as a Cloud Software Provider<br />Jesse Kliza | Apprenda<br />
    2. 2. #1 - Leave now, and miss this presentation<br />
    3. 3. Kidding!(but seriously, you should stay)<br />
    4. 4. Who is Apprenda?<br />“Doctor’s turned patients”<br />Understand the “pain” because we’ve been there<br />Team members with SaaS experience ranging from software architecture to business modeling.<br />Creators of SaaSGrid – The Application Server for Software as a Service<br />
    5. 5. Company Overview<br />Mission and focus: SaaS enablement <br />Both as a delivery paradigm and a business model<br />SaaSGrid solves three problems<br />SaaS Architecture <br />Applications are inherently single tenant  multi-tenancy is very difficult to achieve correctly<br />SaaS Operations<br />Applications are not built for web scale  apps can not take advantage of newly provisioned compute resource<br />SaaS Business<br />Applications are not ready for on-demand commercialization  no instrumentation for metering, monetization and billing schemes<br />SaaSGrid is a licensed application server <br />Run it anywhere you want (Amazon, Azure, OpSource, Peer1, Rackspace…) to eliminate infrastructure lock-in<br />
    6. 6. What is a Cloud Software Provider?<br />Company that writes software, delivers functionality online<br />Company that takes on customer’s operational burden<br />Company that proves themselves regularly since the “sale” is perpetual<br />
    7. 7. The Real #1 – Misunderstand what’s happening to your business<br />Avoid reality that your customers’ former operational burdens are now yours<br />Fail to realize that aggregate demand is now centralized to you<br />Diminish how drastic failures can be<br />Keep the culture the same as a packaged software culture<br />
    8. 8. What Does this Mean?<br />The technology is the business<br />Problems are rarely ever isolated to single customers<br />Auxiliary systems are mission critical<br />Provisioning<br />Billing<br />
    9. 9. #2 – Be Unreliable<br />Intolerable/unplanned downtime<br />Poor support<br />Software delivery and operations are “out of sync”<br />Lack communication<br />
    10. 10. What has implications on reliability?<br />Software architecture<br />Infrastructure capabilities<br />Ability to support web-scale<br />3rd party service providers<br />
    11. 11. #3 – Have Low Adoptability<br />Make it difficult for users to start using your software<br />Make it difficult for users to stop using your software<br />
    12. 12. What affects adoptability?<br />Non automated provisioning<br />Inflexible pricing<br />No trials<br />Bad UI/UX<br />
    13. 13. #4 - Dismiss the critical importance of margins<br />Ignore that 100% gross margins are a thing of the past<br />Dismiss “scalability” and “efficiency” as problems to deal with later<br />Misunderstand the dynamic of customer acquisition<br />
    14. 14. What can make or break margins?<br />Lack of multi-tenancy (or generally poor software architecture)<br />High customer acquisition costs<br />Poorly scaling operations<br />
    15. 15. #5 – Don’t Keep Pace With Change <br />Think you can build once, sell always (“green screen software”)<br />Ignore competitive pressures (geography can no longer isolate you from competition)<br />Ignore cultural changes (think “ecosystem play”)<br />
    16. 16. How do we “keep pace”?<br />Evolve your software often (i.e., frequent updates)<br />Be the center of your customer ecosystem – they’ll force you to keep pace<br />Buy into the fact that you now own a relationship with your customer, not a revenue stream<br />
    17. 17. Is there a single thing you should walk away with?<br />
    18. 18. Architecture “Reigns” in the Cloud<br />Business Architecture<br />Operations framework<br />Customer framework<br />Auxiliary support systems<br />Software architecture<br />Delivery efficiency (e.g., multi-tenancy)<br />Scale capability<br />Change flexibility<br />
    19. 19. Summary<br />Recognize the culture shift required<br />Don’t be chintzy with your technology; “later” isn’t an option with SaaS failure<br />Treat customers as relationships, not revenue streams<br />
    20. 20. Questions?<br />Jesse KlizaDirector of Marketing | Apprenda518-383-2130 x306<br /><br /><br />