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Top Four Benefits of SaaS for Growing SMBs and Their Finance Teams

July 5, 2023
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When you joined or started your company, one of the biggest and most repeated words on your to-do list was “grow”. It was likely embedded into every metric you knew at the time. Grow your customer base, grow larger profits, add more product lines, create bigger margins, add more locations. Being a small to midsize business (SMB), growth can bring on more change than you might initially anticipate. Taking on more employees, increasing your physical space or online presence probably may not catch you off-guard but the need to also look inward and examine internal processes and technologies just might.

As a business leader, while you’ve probably heard the term SaaS (Software as a Service), you may not fully understand what SaaS for finance teams means and how it can enable you to run your company more efficiently and effectively, and ultimately help you grow your business. Given the current business environment, today’s finance leaders need to look beyond tradition and be agile and adjust their technology in response to their business’ changing needs.

Understanding SaaS (Software-as-a-Service): 

Once upon a time, companies had little choice but to physically install software and maintain it on a regular basis. SaaS, or Software as a Service, refers to a method of delivering software applications via the internet. In other words, SaaS runs on the provider’s server rather than the company’s. Instead of purchasing software, companies subscribe to use the solution for a set period of time, typically on a monthly or yearly basis, and rely on the provider to handle maintenance. Along with hosted applications, many SaaS subscribers enjoy access to development tools, database management, business analytics, operating systems, servers, storage, and security firewalls. The end result is that your company runs safely and effectively free from the responsibilities of software and hardware management.

Customers of SaaS are relieved of the burden of maintaining hardware and IT staff to host the software on their premises and they can reap significant savings as a result of their handling the back-end, updates, and support responsibilities.

The SaaS business model can be a win-win for both the clients and vendors with the right software, support, and pricing. One of the virtues with SaaS is that it’s scalable. Ostensibly, it’s one product that you provide to multiple entities. Growth is necessary to recoup your expenses, stay in business, and come out ahead. Other business models without a physical product, such as professional services (like accounting or consulting firms) have similar growth needs but they’re often bound by greater resource restrictions unless they optimize their productivity and automate many processes, often with the help of SaaS products.

Benefits of Using SaaS for Finance

When it comes to the finance team, there are various perks that come with choosing SaaS over purchasing software outright. Here are the top 4 benefits:

We all have less time these days – especially Finance teams that are always under the pressure of impending deadlines. One of the benefits of a SaaS solution is that it can be up and running quickly, saving your company both time and money. Not only is maintenance work shifted from your IT workers to your vendor, but the learning curve tends to be smaller. As a bonus, SaaS allows for faster processing and deployment, something that’s crucial in the current economy.

When a solution is up and running quickly, employees can adapt to the technology faster and start being productive.

If you’ve worked in finance for any length of time, then you likely know that maintaining the right infrastructure for a growing business can be complex. SaaS offers advantages over traditional software options in that it’s highly scalable. Traditionally, implementing and/or upgrading your technology represents a significant investment. With SaaS, you can grow or shrink your tech infrastructure on an as-needed basis. You can even increase or decrease capacity based on time of year, scaling up during the busy season and cutting back when things are slow.

If you use traditional applications for your office software, payroll, content management, and more, then you know that failures can crop up at any time. One of the advantages of software as a service is that the applications are designed not to break. This high resiliency stems from the fact that SaaS boasts duplicate hardware and network capability for critical areas. The end result is that there’s a reduced chance of an application going down when you need it most.

Whether you’re running a small business or a large, multinational organization, you know that time is money. Recognizing that there are only so many hours in the day, many top finance professionals are turning to SaaS solutions to help their team members utilize time more efficiently. By automating strenuous but low-impact tasks, you can save time and money – using the investment to satisfy your customer base, grow your business, and outperform your competition.

In the ever-changing business landscape, finance leaders can’t afford to make any errors. Fortunately, today’s technologies make it easier to deal with the situation on the ground without slowing down. Centage’s cloud-based FP&A software offers an all-in-one SaaS solution for finance teams at a wide array of organizations. With Planning Maestro, you can integrate data from multiple sources into a centralized location, from budgets to reports and forecasts. You’ll gain valuable insight into the financial health of your business, evaluate strategic decisions and change assumptions on the go.

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