Testing a PaaS Model

A platform-as-a-service model (PaaS) gives application developers services to accelerate deployment of software applications with reduced cost and complexity.

Why a PaaS Model is valuable to your business:

  • Expand market potential beyond infrastructure-as-a-service
  • Recurring revenue, more value from existing customers
  • Delivering a development environment for security, multiuser at once, scalability
  • Debate between need for public cloud offering, private PaaS, and hybrid (combination)
  • Net Promoter Score
  • Breadth of types of business services in use
  • Uptime, run time

Why a PaaS Model is valuable to your customers:

  • Saves time from repetitive coding tasks
  • Increases speed: Rapid Application Development
  • Reduces need for developers and designers with no code or low code required for app development
  • Lack of interoperability and portability between providers
  • Fear of lock-in
  • Risk of PaaS company stability and data loss
  • Time to provision: to develop and deploy apps
  • Workloads deployed simultaneously
  • IT development costs per app

Companies using PaaS business models:

AWS Elastic Beanstalk
Microsoft Azure 
Engine Yard 
Pivotal (EMC)
Salesforce Heroku
Google App Engine

PaaS is a new business model the best KPIs are likely to be emergent as IT and business uses are identified

Early on focus on the ability to reduce duplicaiton of effort and reduce dependency on IT resources


What's the best example of a PaaS model?

Amazon pioneered IaaS - infrastructure as a service - with s3 and Amazon Web Services. PaaS was built on top of IaaS to provide more tools to developers. Specifically: Amazon Elastic Beanstalk handles load balancing, scaling and app health monitoring for for apps running on the AWS Cloud.

Amazon's AWS and additional offerings cannot be understood as  standalone offerings. After first developing web services to manage the enormous data analysis pipeline and logistics system for Amazon e-commerce, the company then provided this same internal system for external use and consumption. The majority of Amazon's reported profits come from AWS - both the IaaS and PaaS Business models. 


Key interview questions to validate a PaaS model:

Before you consider the PaaS model:

  • What are your key time and resource bottlenecks for creating and developing applications?
  • How do you currently handle the core infrastructure components of app development?
  • What considerations drive the adoption of cloud-based hosting and deployment?
  • What are the major barriers to cloud adoption?

    When testing the solution:

    • Is the PaaS solution designed to be developed and managed by IT, or is there a requirement to design for business users with no or low code skills?
    • What are the primary use cases the company identifies, and how much improvement in time saved, time-to-provision, and cost savings are generated
    • Determine the minimal offering that would be compelling enough to have the customer pay for the offering.
          • Example test cards (Osterwalder's Value Proposition Design)