Posted by Asha Devi | Last Updated: 24-Aug-18
Software-as-a-Service [SaaS] applications have gained traction in the application development industry as it offers the best-in-class architecture. Still, in order to gain the real benefits, you have to opt for multi-tenant architecture while developing the SaaS application.
Software-as-a-Service [SaaS], one of the three models of cloud computing delivers software application services to the clients on demand through a subscription.
The cloud service providers host and manage the infrastructure, application, maintenance, upgrades, and security patching regularly. And, the users get connected to their application over the Internet with a web browser on their Personal Computers, mobile devices, and/or the tablets for a price.
In simple words, the system could be compared to a flat system, wherein the flat occupants can use it for domestic purposes on pay, while the whole flat system’s management like maintenance, security, repair, and, etc., are managed by the sole proprietor.
Just like the occupants pay the proprietor, here also, the service users pay to the cloud service providers on the pay-as-you-go basis.
For instance: Office tools, Emails, Calendars, and, etc.
The organizational apps include productivity apps, business applications such as Enterprise Resource Planning [ERP], Customer Relationship Management [CRM], management of documents, email apps, calendar apps, and, etc.
The main benefit of availing Saas Application Development Services is that your organization may introduce and run the application quickly and that too with a lesser upfront cost.
In the Software-as-a-Service model, your organization pays rent to the cloud service providers, get access to the application components, data stored over there, and, thus become the tenant of the service provider.
You may follow a strategic tenancy model like the single tenancy [data storage for single tenant], multiple tenancies [stored data used by multi-tenants] and the hybrid tenancy.
Depending on the needs, you may opt for one of these tenancy models. Let’s understand the criteria of choosing the models.
Choose the Right Tenancy Model for Your Organization
Though the tenancy models do not affect the function of the applications, an overall solution must be considered before opting for the one. A few of the criteria as per business case includes scalability, isolation, cost per tenant, complexity in operations and development, customization, and, etc. And, this decides the organization to opt for the tenancy that best suits them.
However, the multi-tenant approach is competent over the single-tenancy and keeps evolving continuously as the demand changes. Let’s go forward and understand the advantages of multi-tenant architecture as it is preferred by most of the organizations today.
Benefits of Multi-tenant Architecture in SaaS Applications:
Reduction in Investment Cost:
In the case of multi-tenancy, the tenants use the shared applications, database, and, the resources.
For each incremental tenant, the vendor need not utilize new resources causing a free on-boarding of the tenant at full scale.
Thus, the vendor provides the lowest possible delivery solution for the tenants.
It is beneficial for both as the tenant gets services at the best price with convenient onboarding and the vendor gets an ever-increasing margin from each new client.
Scalability and Sustainability:
In case of single tenancy, the customer has to manage the updates with the help of tenant management tools. However, in the case of multi-tenancy, it is quite different. There exists centralized updates and maintenance. This invariably leads to optimize the software and the hardware.
It eliminates the associated problems like the licensing and upgrades as one may face in single tenancy. There is minimal customer intervention, backups, and server redundancy.
The branding is chosen depending on the customers’ specific business needs. Though they all are similar from the functional perspective, the elementary design is adaptive for the customer demands.
The presentation components could be set independently. Moreover, the tenants can customize them with specific templates that accommodate their business rules.
Scalable Data Layer:
Depending on the clients’ independent needs, the database implementation could be designed as a separate database, shared, and separate schema.
Let’s understand one by one.
In case of the separate database, the tenant receives a separate database [a clone of the core structure] with isolation, scalability, efficiency, and security with individual maintenance.
In a shared schema, all of the tenants store their data under tenant identifier. Though it cannot be customized, it is beneficial for entry businesses having a smaller user base at low cost.
The next type, separate schema provides the tenant with their own schema giving a logical separation. They can have their own data objects.
Usage of Resources:
The resources could be optimally utilized. The maintenance gains momentum as the infrastructure and resources are utilized by several tenants. Moreover, if any of the tenants are not utilizing a resource, it could be proportionally utilized by another tenant.
Multi-tenant architecture is winning the race by addressing the challenges like increased load and data privacy through proper identification of data, the creation of database architecture, and a neat application architecture.
In a nutshell, multi-tenant architecture delivers the long-term benefits for SaaS applications. It helps in product investment, development, and maintenance for the SaaS application vendors.
And, it is here to stay.