Achieving 40% Reduction in Support Costs Through Modernizing Desktop Enterprise Software to Microservices Modular SaaS
- Industry Public Sector, Social Services Services
- Solution Custom Development, SaaS Platform, Microservices
For a prolonged period, the Client's solution was distributed in the form of a licensed, monolithic desktop software application. However, over time, this distribution model began to present challenges for the Client in terms of product development. Reports of installation and update difficulties began to increase within their large user base. As different end-users encountered various issues due to utilizing their own environments, the Client's support costs were at an all-time high and continued to rise.
Even with a steady influx of new users, retention rates were declining. In addition, long-term customers, dissatisfied with the desktop-only capabilities of the software and its lack of configuration options, expressed their intention to switch to competing solutions that offered enhanced features. Users desired a more customizable, web-based solution that would allow them to select and install specific workflow modules as needed.
Faced with the possibility of losing dedicated customers and incurring high costs to acquire new users, the Client sought the aid of SaM Solutions in completely upgrading their desktop enterprise software product and converting it into a fully modular, cloud-based SaaS solution.
Discovery Phase and Project Planning
The project began with an in-depth evaluation of the Client's requirements. The SaM Solutions team assigned to the project conducted a comprehensive technical analysis of the Client’s current solution, with the aim of identifying functional strong points and potential areas of technical refinement. After the technical analysis was completed, our team then collaborated with the Client's Product Owner on finalizing project documentation. Completed within a period of two months, the project specification included:
- The future solution’s highly scalable microservices architecture.
- The fundamental software logic of the future solution.
- Over 10 distinct functional modules (e.g., document management, payroll accounting, and billing services) that enable users to select and create personalized functional sets of modules for their specific needs.
In the initial scope of work, developers were tasked with constructing the basic infrastructure utilizing our custom RollingStack product (a solution similar to Kubernetes), developing the SaaS solution’s core logic, and then individually re-engineering each functional module.
Development and Testing
The SaM Solutions team assigned to the project consisted of six full-stack developers, two QA experts, and one DevOps engineer. In close collaboration with the Client's internal development team, the SaM Solutions team worked using an Agile methodology. Over the project’s duration, the team held weekly presentations to the client and maintained adherence to the defined project schedule:
- Three months were allocated for building the solution’s core SaaS infrastructure and related functionalities.
- No more than two months were allocated for each module, with the timing varying according to the complexity of each module.
- Two months were allocated for final quality assurance, user acceptance testing, and full solution release.
To minimize the possibility of future reworks that may delay the full product launch, SaM Solutions' QA team implemented both automated and manual testing in tandem with development. After each strategically designed unit was developed and rigorously examined, our DevOps team member deployed it in the cloud.
Our custom RollingStack solution, similar to Kubernetes, aided the client in establishing its own CI/CD pipeline for future updates and equipping its internal team with the necessary skills to implement DevOps management best practices. The solution is adaptable for both on-premises and cloud deployment modes and is designed with an easy-to-use user interface that helps facilitate and expedite internal training.
After 18 months of development, QA, and UAT, the modernized software solution was released in full accordance with the original project timeline. The Client is relying on a team of three SaM Solutions specialists for providing technical assistance and expert advice to its internal IT division.
The implementation of an online platform that eliminates the need for manual installation and update processes has significantly reduced the Client's support expenses by 40%. Utilizing a microservices architecture and a specialized DevOps tool, custom developed by SaM Solutions, has also accelerated the Client's update delivery process – cutting it down from one month to a mere few days. In addition, the solution’s high level of flexibility provided by the implementation of a modular concept not only restored the Client’s user retention rate, but elevated it to 95%.