Information Technology Solution for the Company
Software as a Service is slowly becoming one of the most widely used software technologies that businesses use for enterprise resource planning (ERP), replacing traditional enterprise IT infrastructure. A recent Forrester report found that the budget for on-premise software across diverse enterprises experienced a steady drop of 13 percent, whereas the spending budget for SaaS experienced a 53 percent increase (Dalal, 2016, p.1). Although there is a rapid increase it is important to understand that there are certain disadvantages to using SaaS from a vendor, such as Microsoft.
One of the disadvantages is that the company loses autonomy over their applications and data because a vendor is collecting and storing the data and because the software is owned by the vendor not the company. It is important to remember that Microsoft is one of the leading companies in ERP software and that it is most likely a better situation for the company because the management will be better and more efficient and the company can use Microsoft as a resource and get the help of Microsoft’s IT department that is experienced in SaaS and enterprise systems that can come to a solution quicker than the IT department of the company. It also allows the IT department to lower the amount of high-paid skilled workers needed to run the Enterprise IT infrastructure.
Another disadvantage that some argue is that SaaS loses that customizable factor that can be tailored to a company’s ERP needs where on-premise or in-house software does not lose that customizable factor. However, SaaS is constantly evolving and the services that the software provides from Microsoft and other vendors is constantly being updated and more functionalities are arising from the innovation. The integration of the SaaS can be tailored to the individual company’s ERP needs for a more effective and cost-efficient solution for ERP, rather than being the same services for each company regardless of how the organization operates. Microsoft Dynamics 365 takes advantage of their partners and other independent software vendors that allow them to extend and provide value added solutions that tailor to a wide variety of business capabilities without having to custom build foundational infrastructure that can be costly. This allows Microsoft Dynamics to not only incorporate their SaaS system in large companies, but also be able to tailor to medium and smaller companies that need niche SaaS products. Microsoft Dynamics is able to cater to a wide variety of companies which is important because a lot of companies that were skeptical of the idea of Saas replacing their current enterprise IT systems, can use Saas to benefit them without worrying about disadvantages in regards to customization.
Another risk identified with SaaS is the security, safety, and privacy of data that is stored on a cloud-based server. “The Software as a Service (SaaS) model faces similar challenges as other online services required to protect private information, such as financial or health-care services. In this case, a user interacts with cloud services through a well-defined interface. In principle, therefore, it’s less challenging for the services provider to close some of the attack channels” (Marinescu, 2013, p.1). It is emphasized that protection of storage servers is important and that the methods for protecting and securing said storage servers constantly advances with technology to prevent possible security breaches by new technology, DoS attacks, and malicious insiders. SaaS is constantly updating and even though such challenges arise in terms of security and privacy there are a lot of ways to prevent such attacks and secure a company’s data. Using Microsoft’s Dynamics SaaS is taking advantage of the sophisticated analytics and professional management of several IT departments that Microsoft is equipped with, making evolving security risks less of an issue because not only is it a professional company that has experts in security but, it also stays up to date with the latest security threats and combative measures to provide a high value product for its SaaS users. “Microsoft Dynamics 365 and Microsoft Dynamics 365 (online) provide a security model that protects data integrity and privacy, and supports efficient data access and collaboration. The goals of the model are as follows: Provide users with the access only to the appropriate levels of information that is required to do their jobs. Categorize users by role and restrict access based on those roles. Support data sharing so that users and teams can be granted access to records that they do not own for a specified collaborative effort. Prevent a user’s access to records the user does not own or share” (Microsoft, 2016, p.1). Microsoft Dynamics 365 is also available as an on-premise platform that allows any cloud-based security skeptics to rest easy as it does not necessarily run the same risks as having your data on the cloud.
Microsoft Dynamics 365 provides customizable solutions that tailor to any businesses’ ERP needs, while maintaining the security and privacy of the data that is stored in cloud-based servers. Like any technology SaaS, more specifically, Microsoft Dynamics 365 is constantly evolving, increasing its value, efficiency, customizability, accessibility, and security that makes it a strong solution that can replace current on-premise enterprise IT infrastructure as it creates more value for the business process than on-premise solutions.

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