SaaS Adoption Challenges to Know

SaaS Adoption Challenges

SaaS adoption challenges refer to some of the challenges facing Software as a Service (SaaS). Today, the usage of SaaS applications is widespread among various organizations, often accessed from unsecured mobile devices. As a result, this trend has managed to reduce visibility of enterprise IT and control of enterprise data. As SaaS applications continue to serve mission critical roles, organizations are facing some major security risks, especially with challenges arising from the following reasons:

  • Disparate identities
  •  No access control user/location/device
  •  Multiple authentication and password policies
  •  No auditing/logging
  •  No activity monitoring
  •  Problem in meeting compliance
  •  Lack of malware detection

All these have led to CIOs and even IT organizations asking some hard questions. For example, they are interested to know what their users are doing inside each SaaS application.

Many businesses face challenges in transitioning to fully fledged software as a service (SaaS) environment. In fact, CIOs and other top management/ top tech decision-makers consider these tools helpful and can help a company succeed by delivering key solutions, including business intelligence and analytics. The top concern for SaaS adoption is security, which is preventing most firms from moving to SaaS.

The major security risk to consider before adopting software as a service is that identity management in the cloud is still at infancy. Cloud providers themselves are not very knowledgeable about integrating their own platforms with other identity services that exist behind the enterprise firewall. Google’s “Security Data Connector” forms an encrypted connection between data of a customer and Google’s business applications, yet it still lets the customer control which workers may access Google Apps resources. However, this kind of approach may become unwieldy since customers using multiple SaaS apps may have to deal with a variety of security tools.

Software-as-a-Service (SaaS) is more than just a cloud-based delivery model. It helps organizations meet their various IT service management needs. Moreover, SaaS applications also help organizations save time and money while shifting technology budgets focus from infrastructure to competitive advantage, gaining instant access to the latest trends in innovations. Therefore, SaaS adoption brings several benefits to an organization or enterprise. However, organizations may face several SaaS adoption challenges. So, before selecting a provider, an organization should try and understand some of these problems that they may face and determine how they are going to handle them.

Working Offline is No Longer an Option

Employees and users of SaaS software service must have permanent internet connection they can rely on. Working offline is just not possible in this particular situation. Fortunately, internet connection is no longer a big challenge in the current modern-day work environment; both workers at the office and at home have access to internet connection. Companies who are not assured of high speed internet connection will face challenges while their employees are dealing with SaaS service.

Data Security Concerns

When an enterprise is migrating traditional local software apps to a cloud-based platform, they may face issues regarding data security. When a computer and/or application is compromised, it means the SaaS application supporting several clients may have been exposed to hackers. In practice, any typical provider will promise to do its best to ensure the data is protected and secure at all times. However, to make sure your data is safe, ask them about the infrastructure and application security that they use.

Data Control and Backup Solutions

In as much as many enterprises would want to adopt the SaaS service, many businesses do not have an idea of how their data will be secured by the SaaS provider, or what backup procedure they will apply when the need arises. To ensure you get the desirable results/ outcomes as an organization, managers should not just choose a SaaS vendor but should first find out about providers with solid reputation in handling issues of data backup and data security. Moreover, the vendor should have backup solutions clearly described in the contract (Service Level Agreement Contract).

Data Location

While businesses should be permanently aware of where in the world their data is exactly located, many enterprises have trouble with this. And even though the US Federal Information Security Management Act requires customers to keep their sensitive data in invirtualized systems within the country, data is dynamic and can still move from country to country. While SaaS adoption challenges face any enterprise migrating to a cloud-based service, these should not stop your organization from using the service. Ask about the laws protecting your customer data in respect to their location.

Weak Cloud Standards

One of the first things you’ll probably hear from any cloud service provider or vendor is that they have completed a SAS 70 audit, an auditing standard established to determine whether the cloud service provider has sufficient control over data. The problem is that the standard was not really crafted with cloud computing in mind; it just became stand-in benchmark because cloud specific standards was lacking. However, ISO 27001 is better than the SAS 70 audit because it covers the various operational security aspects that might be of concern to customers.


While cloud vendors tend to argue that they are capable of securing data than the average customer, and SaaS security if ideally better than what most people think, a good number of customers find it hard to believe this because SaaS vendors are rather secretive and do not disclose much about their security processes. For instance, many SaaS providers reveal very few details regarding their operations and data centers, claiming it would jeopardize or compromise security. As a result, many enterprises are reluctant to adopt SaaS service.

There are merits and demerits about SaaS adoption for a business. However, SaaS adoption challenges should not stop you from using the service. To help you make an informed decision, you need to conduct a thorough research on the available services to determine what benefits the SaaS services have to offer. In addition, a solidly drafted Service Level Agreement contract with your provider can help you get the best out of the contract so that your business can get the best solutions to help it run more efficiently. Saas adoption challenges must first be addressed and vendors should not become overprotective of their procedures for organizations to feel comfortable with cloud computing.


Omri is the Head of Demand Generation, as well as the Lead Author & Editor of the SaaSAddict Blog. Omri established the SaaSAddict blog to create a source for news and discussion about some of the issues, challenges, news, and ideas relating to SaaS and cloud migration.