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Director, OpenShift Strategy at Red Hat. Founder of Rishidot Research, a research community focused on services world. His focus is on Platform Services, Infrastructure and the role of Open Source in the services era. Krish has been writing @ CloudAve from its inception and had also been part of GigaOm Pro Analyst Group. The opinions expressed here are his own and are neither representative of his employer, Red Hat, nor CloudAve, nor its sponsors.

5 responses to “SaaS Risk Reduction – Don’t Keep All Eggs in One Basket”

  1. Mike Riversdale

    Nice post.

    1: “Security” over “convenience” – it’s NEVER IT’s call, it’s the businesses.
    If an organisation opens up everything for 10 seconds to win a $10 million piece of business then IT will have to cost the risk at $10million+$1 otherwise go away (a gross simplification, I know, but you get my point).

    2: So you’re talking about “vendor lock-in” which doesn’t seemed to have bothered the majority of the business world so far. Are you suggesting that they got it wrong, the PC is so far entrenched that we should give up on it and fight the good fight afresh with “SaaS/cloud computing”?

    I agree that there is an opportunity for a much more “open” and “sharing” world but I doubt if that opportunity is high on any business priority list (especially right now). IF, being “open” and/or “SaaS driven” has a direct effect on a known business outcome then it will factored in otherwise it’s merely philosophy to make the world a happier place and not what companies are in the business to do.

    As for having all your “eggs in on basket”. What’s the worry? Like I said I it’s not bothered people so far … is it the inherent “flakiness” of web services, the apparent ase with which $10 companies can appear like a multi-nantional organisation, the threat of vendor lock-in.

    None of this takes away from your posting which remains great stuff.

    (PS: “E-mail ID” in the comment form – WTF, why not just say “email”, what is the “ID” bit for??)

  2. Krish

    Hi Mikw,

    Thanks for the comment.

    1. Regd. your first point, you have definitely made an oversimplification. The security vs convenient part is just not an issue of opening up the firewall and getting $10 million where the business decision may triumph the IT guys. There are issues like whether we should allow the staff to login without VPN, whether we can allow the staff to login from any browser and from any location, whether to allow company wide FTP just because it is useful for a particular task, etc. etc. etc. In some cases, relaxing the security might fetch some extra bucks for the company due to the increasing speed of business process but it could have drastic consequences due to big time hack attack. There are several instances like this where IT can stand up to Business Managers and change decisions. Thatz why they have IT Dept. in the first place.

    2. Regarding your point 2, you cannot compare the vendor lock-in in the desktop world with the SaaS world. In the desktop world, you will have your data with you in your computers even if you can’t open it with any other software. If you are patient enough to reverse engineer stuff, you may be able to use your data. In the SaaS world, vendor lock-in implies losing your data altogether. The implications are much more drastic and the comparison to desktop world is not right. This should be an important factor in any vendor’s SaaS strategy. If not, they are going to lose out.

    PS: Regd. your PS, I don’t have any idea and it is Zoho who are doing it. Plus, it is a pre-alpha version of blogging software and things will change a lot before it is released to public. I can’t do anything about it except telling Zoho folks about your problems.

  3. Krish

    It should be *Mike*. Sorry for the spelling error.

  4. Intranet Advisor

    the recent trend does seem to be putting all eggs in the same basket. all the mega players like microsoft with its “online productivity suite”, oracle with webex, cisco with beehive, IBM with bluehouse – seem to be aiming towards offering integrated messaging, collaboration and conferencing solutions. Smaller players like HyperOffice also have great all in one solutions for small businesses.

    but there is still relatively low risk as you would like to see it, because data is contained in standard formats like MS Office files, HTML etc.

  5. Zoho’s CloudSQL - another step toward the Data Cloud? | Paul Miller

    [..] bound/www.cloudave.com’);”>talkedabouta cloud strategy that includes diversification of SaaS vendors. If SaaS vendors make their data available through SQL, like Zoho has done using CloudSQL, it is possible to achieve tighter integration between various SaaS vendors. Such an integration will help users develop a Cloud Strategy which also includes diversification. There are several interesting possibilities that could open up as an ecosystem develops around CloudSQL.” [..]