One of my more recent clients is Clio, a Vancouver-based SaaS (Software as a Service) company built for web-based law practice management.
Clio's target market is clearly set at solos and small firms, and feature wise they're incredibly strong. They know who they want to serve, and what they want to deliver. However, like other SaaS companies, and especially within the legal market, the biggest challenge they face is how create an environment of trust.
This concept of trust is extremely important for clients both when establishing a sales proposition, but perhaps more important, in maintaining a strong relationship with those firms going into the future. You see, at least from my perspective, SaaS companies can apply all the fancy features in the world, but if they can't make you trust that your data is 1) accessible, 2) secure and 3) that client privacy is protected… then the business of SaaS will become an increasingly tough sell.
So are web-services the future of software? Given that I drink the kool-aid myself, I obviously think so. But for marketability of a service like this, I suggested to Clio's founders, Jack Newton and Rian Gavereau, that they tackle these subjects head-on.
Comments are welcome on the posts themselves, or here at Slaw. And Jack & Rian have promised to be around to respond.