healthcaretechoutlook

Innovations in the SaaS World

By John Ragsdale, CIO, Senior Care Centers, LLC

John Ragsdale, CIO, Senior Care Centers, LLC

In the ever-evolving realm of technology, it is imperative that organizations adopt, innovate, and upgrade per the latest trends. In today’s world, numerous technology-driven innovations have made it difficult for organizations to choose the best one that suits their requirements. However, I have been implementing SaaS solutions to streamline workflow in my organization, which is in the healthcare industry. These have equipped us with secure, reliable, and scalable methods to cater to the ever-increasing need of integrating technology within the workflow. A constant drive of innovations in the SaaS space has made its adoption attractive; the easily upgradable software and cost-effectiveness gives it a competitive edge. Being a cloud-based solution, it also frees the CIOs from the worries of data center maintenance or data recovery processes, and allows them to work more closely on systems and solutions to steer growth of the company.

"Leveraging technology to deliver information, making it simple to use as well as enabling users to make efficient, effective, and smart decisions are our goals"

From the perspective of our organization, SaaS has been a very essential platform. That said, I tend to follow a hybrid approach blending SaaS with on-premise solutions to leverage a unique mix in the workflow.

What are the challenges prevailing in the SaaS world?

Presently, roping in the offerings of SaaS seems a bit difficult for organizations that have spent a lot developing data centre based infrastructure. Although SaaS solutions can be cost-effective, they have not reached cost savings levels yet, which makes companies re-think their SaaS strategy. Apart from this, the enterprise software built on SaaS platforms can be expensive and its justification becomes weak when compared with company owned and operated robust data center infrastructure. For instance, when I needed to deploy an HR recruiting and on-boarding software in my organization, I evaluated Oracle’s SaaS solutions, which was very attractive and met all our needs. The mobile and web features offered were impeccable, however the ‘price tag’ was very high for thousands of users and we decided to not deploy it in our organization. In my opinion, these are some of the challenges that are plaguing the SaaS landscape and making its widespread acceptance a challenge. However, I am sure it is a momentary phase and soon we will come up with ways to tackle these obstacles.

Upcoming Technological Outbreaks

Having advocated for SaaS solutions, I would like to be practical while formulating strategies for the future. Per the ongoing trends in the market, the Internet of Things (IoT) is sure to have a major impact on technology innovation. According to some surveys, the number of connected devices is going to increase exponentially in the near future, thus escalating the demand of quick and innovative services. IoT will be a game changer in such scenarios and it needs to be harnessed effectively to suit our requirements. We need to intersperse IoT with all technological spheres including SaaS to reap the most benefits. It is crucial that we learn from the challenges in the SaaS landscape and formulate a cost-effective and cost-efficient financial model for widespread acceptance of IoT.

What is the role of a CIO in a SaaS ecosystem?

Being the decision maker of all technology-driven developments, CIO’s play a pivotal role in driving innovations that add value to the business. It is the role of a CIO to make sure all the technological endeavors are supported and the production space is running. Speaking from a technology standpoint, a CIO should expect technology to fail, and devise solutions as well as indulge in strategic planning to overcome such issues. In order to get an edge over other competitors, a CIO should ensure delivery of superior customer service, which sets the benchmark of future growth of any organization. Apart from this, building a strategic partnership also falls under a CIO’s responsibility, which he/she should proactively engage in to help the organization proliferate amid cutthroat competition.

It has been my observation that the healthcare industry is behind others in coming to terms with technology usage. My responsibility, being in this industry, is to ensure that we engage in technology innovations, which are in harmony with the latest market trends. We should seek to provide world-class information and technology experience to our users. Leveraging technology to deliver information, making it simple to use, as well as enabling users to make efficient, effective, and smart decisions are all foundational tenets to strive for.. 

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