What is SaaS Operations Management [2020 Guide]

In 2020, the average company uses hundreds of different SaaS tools.

At the same time, though, a big chunk of these apps end up being unused or underutilized:

  • You buy an app, but your employees don’t use them
  • You buy two apps with the same use-cases and functionalities
  • You buy an overpriced license which you don’t really need

This leads to a rise of SaaS waste – the average company wastes around $200,000 annually on software they’re not even using!

So, in order to get the most out of your business, and cut useless expenses, it’s important to keep track of your SaaS inventory and optimize it on an ongoing basis.

And that’s where SaaS Operations Management comes in.

In this article, you will learn everything you need to know about SaaS Operations Management including:

  • What is SaaS Operations Management (SOM)?
  • 4 SaaS Operations Management Use-Cases
  • 5 Common SOM Features
  • SaaS Operations Management with Blissfully

Ready? Let’s get started.

What Is SaaS Operations Management (SOM)?

SaaS Operations Management (SOM), also known as SaaS management, is the process of sorting, managing, and securing all of your SaaS applications with the intent to minimize spend on unused software, and maximize the utilization of all your SaaS tools.

Usually, when people refer to SOM, they’re talking about SOM software – a centralized system that keeps track of your SaaS usage, spend, and all the other essential information.

If you’re an organization that uses a lot of SaaS tools, it’s essential to use SOM software to make sure you’re getting the best out of them. A Software Operations Management software can help you with the following use-cases:

4 SaaS Operations Management Use-Cases

#1. SaaS Operations

SaaS Operations Management software helps you manage, control, and track all your SaaS tools in one place.

You can:

  • See who’s using what software
  • Give or revoke access
  • Ensure that you’re getting the best out of your SaaS tools
  • Manage your SaaS vendors

#2. SaaS Spending Optimization

SOM software tools also enable you to track and analyze your spending.

This will give you a clearer idea of your expenses and will help you understand whether you’re getting the best out of your SaaS tools.

You can, for example, find duplicate apps. I.e. you’re subscribed to 2 apps with the same features (and you only need one).

Or, you can also find apps that you’re paying for, but not really using.

You can then use this information to optimize your SaaS spending and cut out all apps you don’t really need.

#3. On- and Offboarding

SaaS Operations Management software also helps you automate some parts of employee onboarding and offboarding.

Specifically, it helps get new hires onboard all the SaaS tools they’re going to be using, or offboard former employees.

You add an employee on the SaaS management platform, assign them to a department, and the software creates a SaaS onboarding workflow just for them.

All the employee has to do is follow the instructions for the onboarding, and they’ll have access to all the SaaS apps they need in no time.

On the other side of the coin, it’s also important to offboard all former employees and revoke access to all the apps they’re using. Otherwise, you open yourself up to the risks of cyber attacks, data leakage, and other potential liabilities.

#4. Security and Compliance

Using a SOM system makes it easier to be compliant with specific regulations.

For example, let’s say you’re doing a SOC 2 audit. You need to ensure that all SaaS apps you’re using are SOC 2 compliant. Without a SOM system, this would require a ton of research.

With a tool like Blissfully, though, you automatically get the data on your dashboard!

5 Common SaaS Operations Management Software Features

Now that we’ve covered all the uses-cases, let’s talk features:

What kind of features do SOM tools come with, and what are they used for?

Starting with…

#1. Administration

You can use a SaaS management tool to manage your SaaS tools. You can:

  • Run workflows for vendor approval, renewal or termination
  • See a complete view of all the tools you’re using, and how much you’re spending
  • Find duplicate or unused apps
  • Onboard and offboard employees from SaaS tools

#2. Role-Based Access Control

SOM tools make employee on or offboarding significantly easier.

All you have to do is define their role and department, and the software will automatically create a workflow for giving or revoking the relevant SaaS access.

#3. Automatic SaaS Discovery

The best SOM software should be able to automatically uncover all the SaaS tools you’re using, without you having to add them manually.

At the same time, it should also automatically pull the pricing and licensing data from the SaaS tool.

This makes SaaS management as a practice significantly easier, and cuts down on the time you spend on it.

#4. Policy Management

The Policy Management feature of SOM software includes the creation and management of SaaS policies within the company and their smooth integration into your operations.

Such guidelines help your employees to properly use and maintain the SaaS tools in their day-to-day work activities.

#5. Reporting

The Reporting feature helps you track everything that happens within the SOM platform. It gives you a centralized database of information about your SaaS software tools, their activity, usage, and changes.

This way, you can gain an accurate and clearer insight into how your business uses different SaaS tools, and how this usage can be optimized.

SaaS Operations Management with Blissfully

Looking to get started with SaaS operations management?

We recommend using Blissfully, one of the most popular SaaS management tools on the market.

The software comes with all the essential features you’d look for in a SaaS ops tool – from administration to tracking, Blissfully has you covered. Despite its feature-rich platform, it’s easy to navigate and allows you to manage all things SaaS.

The platform is divided into two major categories: System of Record and Workflows & Automation.

System of Record

Blissfully’s System of Record features everything you need to discover and track all your SaaS tools.

This category includes:

    • SaaS Discovery. Discover and track all apps used within your organization.
    • Vendor Management. Manage easily all vendors’ renewals, approvals, and compliance all from one place.
    • Usage and Spend Tracking. Always have up-to-date information on your SaaS spending.
    • Insights and Reporting. Manage access, improve productivity, and lower costs with the powerful report system.
    • SaaS Codex. Get a list with all SaaS tools, their product information, use cases, and compliance status.

..And all this happens through one centralized dashboard:

SaaS Operations Management

Workflows & Automation

It’s not enough to track your SaaS tools – you need something to effectively manage them as well. This is where the Workflows & Automation features come in.

This feature includes everything you need to manage and implement SaaS changes across your entire organization.

Under this category are the features:

    • Vendor Workflows. Manage vendor approval, renewal, termination, and other critical information just with a few clicks.
    • Employee Workflows. Automate processes like employee onboarding, offboarding, approvals, and requests. You can also trigger notifications and reminders for tasks that are assigned to different employees.
    • Org-Wide Collaboration. Connect all different departments and leaders so they can collaborate easily with each other.
    • IT Automation. Save time and money by automating small menial tasks.
    • Employee Portal. Here, employees can manage their tasks and tools and communicate with other team members and managers.

Want to give Blissfully a go?

Book a demo now!

Final Thoughts

The emergence of SaaS tools has made running a business easier than ever before.

However, managing all these tools can be difficult.

To make things easier, you can use a SaaS Operations Management software tool that will help you get the most out of your SaaS stack!