The Verdict Is In: You Need SaaS Backup for Data Protection, and You Need It Now

Advice from industry analysts about SaaS data protection is coming in about as fast as companies are making the move to SaaS applications. And the consensus is unquestionable: If you’re using SaaS applications like Google Workspace for Work, Salesforce, or Office 365, you need a solution to back up your data in those applications. And you need it now – before you face some serious data losses. Here’s the latest on what analysts today are saying about why this is such a pressing issue and what you need to do to address it.

The stakes are getting higher

Read through interviews, posts and reports from data protection experts over the last 15 months, and you’ll see a growing sense of urgency in discussions about SaaS applications. Forrester analyst Rachel Dines was one of the first to sound the alarm in a February 2014 report imploring companies to “Back Up Your Critical Cloud Data Before It’s Too Late.” More recently, Jason Buffington of Enterprise Strategy Group put SaaS backup solutions at the top of his list of 2015 Data Protection Predictions.

These analysts and other industry leaders are responding to the rapid growth in SaaS applications and the lack of IT oversight on backup for these applications. These factors are putting more data at risk for loss every day. According to IDC’s Saas and cloud software forecast, the market for cloud software will grow to $76.1 billion by 2017, and SaaS delivery will grow nearly five times faster than the software market as a whole. More companies turning to the cloud for their productivity, CRM and other day-to-day business applications means more risk for data loss.

SaaS providers can’t provide all the protection you need

One important point analysts raise is that many organizations don’t treat SaaS data protection the same way they’re treating their on-premises data protection. IDG recently reported that 68% of businesses they polled were either extremely or very confident that their SaaS provider could restore their data in the event of a loss. But as Eric Slack explains in the analyst firm Storage Switzerland’s blog, the protection SaaS providers offers is “basically protection for them, for their infrastructures.” It keeps your data safe from loss on their end, like a natural disaster at their data center site, but won’t help with problems on your side of things, from getting hacked to accidentally trashing an email or a complete set of shared folders you need.

So what’s the worst that could happen? You could suffer a permanent loss of critical data, without much recourse. A Storage Strategies NOW report describes it like this: “…the dirty little secret of the SaaS industry is that companies lose company SaaS data on a regular basis and most SaaS providers do not offer on-demand data restore capabilities that can be initiated by their customer companies.”

It’s time to move to cloud-to-cloud backup

Now that you know the problem and the stakes, it’s time to find a solution that you can count on to back up your data reliably and accurately, store it safely and securely, and – perhaps most important – quickly restore it if you ever suffer a data loss.

The analysts we’ve mentioned in this post all talk about cloud-to-cloud backup as an effective approach. But identifying the right cloud-to-cloud solution is going to take some knowledge about the different options that are available to you and how to evaluate them. Here’s a good start: The Definitive Guide to Backup for Google Workspace for Work, available now from Spanning. Check it out for lots of practical tips on choosing a backup solution for Google Workspace – and stay tuned to find out when our next publication, The Definitive Guide to Backup for Salesforce, is ready for download.