Resource Management with SaaS

SaaS (software as a service) Resource Management refers to the methods used to allocate software services to consumers of a cloud based SaaS offering (i.e. web application). SaaS resource allocation is facilitated through SaaS resource sharing. Resource sharing SaaS applications utilize repositories (databases) to allocate software resources to SaaS users, which includes the capacity to logically isolate and store user data and user software customizations.

Resource Sharing SaaS Overview

Resource Sharing SaaS refers to the capacity to deliver software services to multiple users (tenants) within a single instance of a cloud based SaaS offering. There are two major models for SaaS resource sharing, as follows:

  • Shared Repository – the shared repository (database) model of SaaS resource sharing is implemented by partitioning a variety of data belonging to multiple users contained within a single database. Under this model, each user (tenant) can be logically isolated from the other users of the SaaS application through a unique identifier such as a Customer ID. Database queries may then be leveraged by the SaaS application to retrieve and manage data for each SaaS user based on their unique identifier. This SaaS resource sharing model provides a high level of scalability for SaaS applications having a large number of users. The main disadvantage of this model is that it makes it more difficult to customize the SaaS offering to each individual customer’s unique data specifications.
  • Dedicated Repository – the dedicated repository (database) model of SaaS resource sharing is implemented by deploying a separate logical database for each SaaS user. A dedicated repository is the best resource sharing model to implement when there is a small number of users who lightly use a particular SaaS offering, because it is more efficient to allocate resources from a single repository under this scenario. This model also provides a marketing advantage for clients who have security concerns surrounding the logical storage of their enterprise data with that of other non related entities. The main disadvantage of this model is higher maintenance costs, as compared to the shared repository model of resource sharing.

SaaS Resource Management

SaaS Resource Management requires the use of configuration tools, to implement the desired model for SaaS resource sharing. For example, the Zero-Effort Multi-Tenancy feature included in Apprenda’s Private PaaS offering provides the capacity to configure SaaS resource sharing using one of the following three approaches: implementing a single commingled database, implementing a database schema per customer or implementing an isolated database per customer. What’s more, Apprenda’s Zero-Effort Multi-Tenancy tool provides the ultimate level of flexibility, with its rich feature set that allows the multi-tenant behavior for a SaaS offering to be predefined by an ISV (independent software vendor) in advance of deployment. Details such as whether data from multiple customers can be mixed in database deployments or separated into dedicated databases can easily be configured, providing a major time-to-market boost for ISV’s.