As the world becomes increasingly technology-driven, it hardly comes as a surprise that the SaaS (Software as a Service) solutions are expected to generate revenues close to $150 billion in 2020 alone. This value, which is $20 billion more than what Gartner predicted in 2019, could be owing to the pandemic that forced organizations to adopt SaaS solutions to enable remote work.
SaaS has been an attractive proposition as it gives organizations the capacity to make their product or service available and provisioned on subscription, fast. SaaS solutions are now being used for a variety of business functions and have extended far beyond the core engineering and sales application territory.
Instant activation is one of the major draws of SaaS solutions. However, given the complexity of the SaaS universe, this becomes a challenge in itself because of the need to manage:
- Varying product types and subscription bundles.
- Unique customer profiles with different terms and conditions.
- Updates and personalization for customer subscription plans with agility.
- Creating product variations based on currency and applying the relevant tax codes for a specific region.
- Sudden demands to upgrade or downgrade subscriptions, automatically cancel/renew/pause plans, and update payment methods.
- The demands of customers to control their subscription plans while ensuring there is no revenue leakage
- Custom workflows to ensure that any operational tasks or devices associated with the subscription plan are activated/updated/deactivated instantly
Given these complexities, automation becomes critical to ensure robust revenue management without compromising on instant activation.
Here is how this works out:
Automated order fulfillment workflows
Manual order fulfillment processes are not only time-consuming but also error-prone. Given the number of variables, the high level of personalization, and customization involved, instant activation becomes a gargantuan task in the absence of automated order fulfillment workflows.
Organizations need the capability to define workflows without any manual intervention and call on any upstream, midstream or downstream systems to ensure all operational processes have been completed. They will allow the order to go through all the different workflow stages automatically to provision and activate the service faster and with high business accuracy.
Configure workflows and enable easy order orchestration
The complexities of SaaS products and services make order orchestration a time-consuming challenge in the absence of automation. Service activation cannot happen unless order orchestration happens fast because it is imperative to define the tasks that require completion before the system provisions and activates the service. Furthermore, orchestrating orders that involve unique product bundles is made easier through automation.
Having a well-defined and automated order orchestration process allows organizations to configure workflows that define the flow of operations for order fulfillment. A robust service delivery platform can allow organizations to configure different tasks or subtasks that need to be a part of the workflows while ensuring fast activation without errors & fallouts.
Automate service fulfillment
Manually enabling service fulfillment becomes counter-productive in the SaaS universe. When done manually,
- Associating rules with individual tasks for each subscription takes time and can lead to mistakes.
- Accommodating any change or customization could lead to billing errors and revenue leaks.
- Tracking subscriptions to the last detail also becomes a major challenge.
With automated service fulfillment, organizations can associate rules with individual tasks. This helps them instantly activate, modify, deactivate, suspend, or resume services across any network device or application without errors and within a short timeframe.
Keep track of the inventory
Automation is also essential to fine-tune inventory management to drive revenues. The complexities of subscription plans, discounts, and multiple permutations and combinations of configurations can make inventory management a nightmare – especially when organizations need to instantly activate services while making sure that they have extensively covered their base.
When managing large volumes of inventory that are associated with unique customer subscription plans, it is imperative to be able to track inventory movement and depletion in real-time, without having to worry about maintaining manual records.
Service Delivery Automation – The Key to Success for SaaS Businesses
For instant activation, it is essential to have defined workflows and processes that organically connect the dots and help organizations manage the inventory, its ancillary details, and capably assign them to the right subscription plan.
There are several moving parts in this SaaS universe, and all of these impact revenues.
While instant activation is a trump card, it can only lead to profitability if the behind-the -scenes action is capably managed. The solution to this problem lies in leveraging a robust revenue management and service delivery platform that allows end-to-end automation of the order fulfillment process. With this, organizations can drive a seamless and elevated subscription activation experience for their customers.