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Telstra T-Suite blending local and global SaaS value

Steve Hodgkinson | April 2, 2009
T-Suite is a carefully measured step forward on SaaS

It will be the Telstra and T-Suite brands that take a beating in the online chat forums if services dont live up to expectations, and T-Suites margins that take a hit if the support staff are too busy.

T-Suite taps into local SMB worries

Telstra has cleverly linked T-Suite to the challenges of complying with new industrial relations laws by 1 July. The T-Suite Workplace Guardian service will assist SMBs to implement compliant employment processes, including template contracts, letters of offer and termination etc. The SaaS offering taps into this angst, and offers the prospect of processes and templates that are automatically updated as legislation and workplace practices evolve in the future. Nice work.

This kind of local value will be an essential sweetener for the more generic SaaS offerings such as email and CRM, and may well prove to be just the differentiator that T-Suite needs to attract the attention of SMBs.

Data security and privacy remains the joker in the SaaS deck

Telstra has adopted a two-tiered stance to data security and privacy issues data stored within Telstras infrastructure comes under the companys usual policies. For data stored by ISVs, Telstra will take responsible measures to require ISVs to implement appropriate policies and to ensure that they do the right thing.

This is probably the best that can be done at the moment, but our sense is that this is a joker in the deck that could cause trouble, and will require careful watching as the SaaS offerings mature. 

Steve Hodgkinson is a research director in government at Ovum     


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