October 14, 2013 | Written by: Jason Bernstein
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When you buy a software as a service (SaaS) solution, such as IBM Social Media Analytics Software as a Service, you are making a very wise investment. Beyond what the software can provide you and your company from a ROI standpoint (which is a completely different article), buying as SaaS instead of on-premise can be a great choice.
As the development lead for IBM Social Media Analytics SaaS, I have been working diligently to provide our customers with a solution that meets and exceeds all customer expectations. Here’s a look at six things that we provide with our SaaS solution—all so you, our customer, don’t have to.
1. Setting up the hardware
One of the biggest bottlenecks in obtaining a new enterprise software solution is obtaining the servers to run them on. Purchasing several powerful servers can take days, weeks or even months for a large enterprise. For IBM Social Media Analytics SaaS, we use the IBM Hosting Services at IBM SmartCloud Enterprise + to provide top-of-the-line hardware, ready to deploy when you are ready.
2. Optimizing the hardware and network
The servers and network we use have been tuned thoroughly and provide optimal throughput for all capabilities—network configuration, disk I/O and minimal software overhead. The servers have high speed attached storage devices, fiber channel communications and more to provide you with the best experience on day one.
3. Installing and configuring software
A typical installation of on-premise software can take between hours and days. With a complex solution such as IBM Social Media Analytics which takes advantage of power enterprise software including IBM DB2, IBM InfoSphere BigInsights and IBM Cognos Business Intelligence, installing, configuring and optimizing systems can be a time-consuming, and sometimes even a difficult task. Needless to say, when you buy the solution as SaaS, that is all taken care for you. You are guaranteed to have a working system ready to use right away.
4. Securing the systems
IBM is very conscious of computer security, and this applies especially to our SmartCloud solutions. From maintaining operating system patches to tightening middleware security, and enforcing secure engineering design, your data is safe in our cloud.
5. Maintaining backups
Even in the cloud, things happen. You can accidentally delete that project you’ve been working so hard on. Don’t worry; we are taking care of backups as well. At IBM Social Media Analytics, we allow you to restore any project back to a point within the last 30 days if something goes wrong. Our backup schedule uses the powerful Tivoli Storage Manager backup solution, and we test restoring projects so when the need arises, we can handle it for you.
6. Monitoring services
Finally, ensuring that the systems are online can take an entire department. And we have an entire department monitoring your servers and services to ensure that they are running smoothly and continuously. Our internal alerting mechanism lets our monitoring team know if anything has stopped working, if your disks are running low on space or if you are nearing your monthly limits along with checking many low-level and high-level OS and application statistics.
Trusting IBM to manage your software as a service solution is a wise move. We take your business very seriously and ensure that you have access to your data in an optimal and safe manner. Share with me other reasons why you choose IBM to be your SaaS provider on Twitter @jdber and right here on this forum.