Software as a Service (SaaS) is anticipated to provide significant benefits to small and medium enterprises (SMEs) due to ease of access to high-end applications, 7*24 availability, utility pricing, etc. However, underlying SaaS is the assumption that SMEs will directly interact with the SaaS vendor and use a self-service model. In practice, we see the rise of SaaS intermediaries who support SMEs with using SaaS. This paper reports on an empirical study of the role of intermediaries in terms of how they support SMEs in sourcing and leveraging SaaS for their business. The contributions of this paper are: (1) the identification and description of the role of SaaS intermediaries and (2) the specification of different roles of SaaS intermediaries, in particular a more basic role focussing on technological and operational issues and a more added value role with a broader customer and strategic alignment perspective.
Venkatachalam, Nagarajan; Fielt, Erwin; Rosemann, Michael; and Mathews, Shane, "Software as a Service (SaaS) for Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs): The Role of Intermediaries" (2013). ACIS 2013 Proceedings. 152.