Cloud computing layers: Does yours reach SaaS?

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In recent years, customers have been increasingly understanding and adopting services available in a cloud environment. Most of them begin with infrastructure as a service (IaaS), but when they get to know the model better and get more confident about it, they move up in the chain, increasing their “cloud footprint.”

Cloud services can be divided in two categories: cloud platform and cloud applications.

Cloud platform, which is deployed by infrastructure as a service (IaaS) and platform as a service (PaaS), focuses more on hardware to optimize IT resources and on software for application development.

IaaS allows customers to provision computing resources such as processing, storage and networks in a flexible and rapid way to build the IT infrastructure, including optionally the maintenance costs for operating systems and applications.

PaaS provides the customers with an environment to use programming languages, platforms and tools to develop and manage their applications, including capabilities such as application design, testing and team collaboration services.

Cloud applications are composed by software as a service (SaaS) and business process as a service (BPaaS), and they allow software and business process delivery in a multitenant environment.

SaaS customers use applications such as collaboration, monitoring and customer relations management (CRM) without having to install and configure them. Also, customers will benefit from service providers’ best practices in  application configuration and reduced costs, since SaaS offerings are usually deployed in a multitenant environment and the economy of scale can be leveraged.

BPaaS allows customers to consume business outcomes or services through web-centric interfaces such as payroll processing and HR. Customers can use SaaS or BPaaS offerings to improve their business process and reduce operational costs.

The main advantage of all cloud services is to deliver  IT resources dynamically as a service and to enable consumption through multitenant and shared infrastructures without the need to maintain those resources.

In your case, how big is your cloud? Did you already get the advantages of SaaS? Check the IBM portfolio listed on, and see how it can improve your business.

Comment below or connect with me on Twitter (@MarcosSylos) to continue this discussion.

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