Three Ways to Have a Good Relationship With a SaaS Vendor

A group of employees working on a program Software-as-a-service (SaaS) vendors offer more than an application or software. They provide expertise in a specific area that benefits their clients on a long-term basis, such as a full-service online banking system for credit unions and community banks. So when you engage with a SaaS vendor, you are entering into a partnership that goes deeper than merely buying a product from them.

Of course, you’ll want to have a partnership with your SaaS vendor that is mutually beneficially for both of you. So here are some of the best management practices you can observe when working with SaaS vendors:

1. Include service level agreements (SLAs) in your contract

Many SaaS vendors do not state the level of service they provide in the contract, so make sure you look for it before signing or renewing a contract. If they have promised 24/7 service or 99 percent uptime performance, then you had better receive it once you sign the contract. You can add SLAS through an addendum to the contract, so don’t be afraid to speak up about it.

When dealing with multiple vendors, consider using management software, as advised by MetaSaaS.com. This application can help you keep track of the contract terms during renewals.

2. Ask for the vendor’s security, IT, and financial audits

In a way, you’re outsourcing a part of your business operations when working with a SaaS vendor. Thus, it is important that they meet your corporate and security standards. Most SaaS vendors let their clients take a peek at their security, IT, and financial audits, especially during the clients’ annual audits. If your vendor can’t provide these necessary documents, you might want to look for another provider.

3. Participate in product development

SaaS vendors continually improve their applications to improve their service to their clients. Again, you’re outsourcing a business operation when you engaged with a SaaS vendor, so it is crucial that you have a voice in the SaaS vendor’s product development. Make sure you participate in the user conferences and meetings. This way, you can contribute ideas for future product upgrades.

With these three management tips, you can make certain that both you and your vendor will get the most out of your business partnership — from the beginning until the end of the relationship.