Software as a Service Offering (SaaS) FAQ
Making the move from on-premise software to software as a service (SaaS) is an increasingly popular way of using software in the workplace. Gathering the right information is the key to choosing the right solution from the right vendor – and ultimately, deriving the most value from your new SaaS application. This document is intended to highlight some common questions and concerns associated with the SaaS version of Strategic Web Asset Tracking by Strategic Systems & Technology Corporation (Strategic Systems).
What protections does Strategic Systems use to protect our data?
Strategic Web Asset Tracking is hosted on the Microsoft® Azure™ Cloud hosted services platform. Through industry-leading security practices and experience running some of the largest online services around the globe, Microsoft delivers enterprise cloud services that invite customer confidence. Here are some of the security measures Azure takes to protect your data:
- A secure, SAS70-certified Tier 4 data center.
- Intrusion detection.
- SSL and application security.
- 24/7 security monitoring.
- Third-party certifications for security practices.
All application development takes place in our Atlanta, Ga., office. In an effort to prevent breaches or theft and ensure that only authorized users have access to your application and related data at all times, we have put the following safeguards in place:
- Criminal background checks for all employees.
- Restricted access through keycard entry and monitoring.
- Locked, climate-controlled Server rooms operating with Uninterruptable Power supplies and redundant internet connections.
- 24/7 recorded video monitoring of all facilities.
- Encrypted connections between our facility and Azure’s Cloud Services.
- Restricted access to consumer data.
- Technology-leading hardware firewall with intrusion detection and protection.
2. Data Retention & Ownership
What are Strategic Systems' policies regarding our data and data portability?
All rights to your data are maintained by you. We provide you the ability to easily export your data and take it elsewhere, if desired.
- So long as your account is active, you have full access to your information, for viewing or transfer, at any time.
- Information can be downloaded in a variety of popular formats.
3. Performance and Availability
How will Strategic Systems maintain the continuity of our service, specifically with regard to uptime and disaster protection?
By leveraging Microsoft’s Azure Cloud service, we are able to provide the following:
- Minimum uptime of 99.5%.
- Redundant operations in off-site locations, in case of a catastrophic event (fire, earthquake, etc.).
- Back-up servers to avoid service disruptions if a piece of hardware fails.
- Around-the-clock performance monitoring, so issues can be detected and addressed promptly.
What type of support is included with this Service?
To assist in your ongoing success, Strategic Systems provides the following support services to our customers:
- Flexible support options – web, email, phone and chat.
- Support during standard business hours – Monday through Friday, 9AM–5PM EST.
- A skilled, well trained team of Tier 1 and 2 support professionals.
- The ability to submit an unlimited number of support tickets, at no additional cost.
5. Enhancements and Upgrades
How does Strategic Systems leverage the latest and greatest technologies?
Strategic Systems stays continuously educated about the newest technology developments in order to evaluate on an ongoing basis what is beneficial and appropriate for both our products and our customers. As a result, we are able to offer:
- Frequent enhancement cycles, with new features rolled out several times each year.
- Upgrades that require little or no effort – and minimal disruption (usually during off-peak hours) – on your part.
- A formal mechanism for gathering customer feedback and suggestions, and incorporating this feedback into product roadmaps.
Can we link to or share information with on-premise systems?
The solution uses open, standard-based application programming interfaces (APIs) to provide automation of the application. APIs are commonly used by developers to integrate capabilities into new web-based applications and existing business management systems.
Every SaaS provider says their software is user friendly. Is Strategic Systems’?
Careful thinking has been given to how the user interface is designed, from both a technical and usability standpoint. Here are some of the features we’ve built in to make the system as customizable and user friendly as possible:
- The ability to rename all asset data fields.
- The ability to show only those asset data fields you need.
- The ability to choose the order of those fields.
- The ability to limit functionality and visibility by role, providing a tailored user experience.
8. Contractual Flexibility
What contract options are available?
Our goal is to provide convenient, flexible contract options to address the widest range of budget needs. Here’s how it works:
- The service is made available to you on an annual, per user basis through an effective subscription mechanism. This avoids large upfront costs associated with on-premise installation.
- Purchase only the number of seats you need each year.
- Add or remove users on an annual basis as needed.
9. Single or Multi-Tenant?
What can you tell me about your infrastructure?
Strategic Systems uses a multi-tenant SaaS approach. Multi-tenancy refers to a principle in software architecture where a single instance of the software runs on a server, serving multiple client-organizations (tenants). Multi-tenancy contrasts with multi-instance architectures where separate software instances (or hardware systems) operate on behalf of different client organizations. With a multi-tenant architecture, a software application is designed to virtually partition its data and configuration, and each client organization works with a customized virtual application.
Some of the more prominent benefits of this architecture include:
- Greater scalability – capacity can be more rapidly increased, and when new hardware or processing power is added, the entire customer base benefits.
- Improved performance – since just one technology stack must be monitored, it is easier to detect and correct performance problems.
- Lower subscription fees – with multi-tenant, the vendor benefits from the economy of scale, which translates to lower subscription fees.
- Better service – with only one platform to administer, vendors can provide more responsive services, for more rapid troubleshooting and problem resolution.
- Faster upgrades – because there is just one single, centralized place to go to make enhancements, new software versions or patches can be deployed more rapidly.
Who else is using Strategic Systems’ solutions to track their fixed assets?
Since 1997, Strategic Systems’ solutions have been used by thousands of organizations to save time and money tracking fixed assets of all kinds. With increased demand for asset tracking in the cloud, we are pleased to offer a SaaS version of the Strategic Web Asset Tracking application that has served our customers so well over the past 16 years.