SaaS Management is the newest buzzword, and Gartner believes that these solutions are so critical and rich in capabilities that they are actual platforms.
Gartner coined the term “SaaS Management Platform” in late 2018 in the white paper, The SMP: A ‘Single Pane of Glass’ to Make SaaS Management More Secure, Streamlined & Cost-Effective.
The issue with software is that even the easiest applications to use can be a beast to manage. While the cloud relieves a lot of the on-premises IT infrastructure burden, SaaS brings with it new things IT must worry about.
There are two core issues:
- In nearly all SaaS solutions – management is a second thought
- There are hundreds of SaaS apps running around a typical enterprise
So, what exactly is in an SMP?
A SMP should offer six main categories of function:
- Role-Based Access Control
- Policy Management
- License Management
- IT Workflow Automation
In the graphic below, you can see how Gartner defines an SMP – and some extra features CoreView brings to the party.
And why should I care?
Native SaaS administration consoles have limitations. As a result, this forces admins to create complex scripts which take a long time to write and run and are prone to human error.
As with anything, IT cannot manage what it does not know it has. For example, SaaS Management Platforms help in finding SaaS apps, helping IT determine which are Shadow IT, and how to fix it.
Shadow IT sounds cool on the surface but can cause a lot of problems. In a Cisco survey, CIOs said they had 15X the cloud applications than expected. In addition, according to Gartner, Shadow IT represents 30 to 40 percent of IT spending in large enterprises.
Shadow IT causes all kinds of problems. It is a huge area of attack by hackers, and a vector for malware. Meanwhile, storage, file sharing and collaboration apps are all key sources of data leakage.