In our everyday, terms such as Cloud or Everything-as-a-Service (XaaS) come up here and there. Usually, these terms go hand in hand with a few key benefits such as easy system growth, better system reliability and reduced infrastructure costs. But what does this mean to the parking professional? Should we even care about these terms and benefits? If you have a central IT department or an IT contact, you might be thinking: ‘That’s their concern’. This blog will explain why those terms are important to you, and how new cloud managed parking services ensure that nobody needs to worry about anything, except enforcing parking.
Let’s start with an analogy- your hot water tank at home. There was a time when your only option for hot water in your house was to purchase a tank, and have it installed by a plumber and/or electrician. The novelty of a new big cylinder in the basement wears off in 10 minutes. Then, off you go to cook, take a bath or shower, and forget about how the hot water even got there (because fundamentally who cares so long as it’s there). A couple months or years go by, and suddenly you have a real problem: no more hot water! What do you do? Call a plumber? But what if it’s electrical? This might not be your specialty or day job, but you’re stuck trying to figure out this hot water crisis. At any given time, when the tank has issues, you’re relying on non-core competencies, or looking for anyone who can help.
The good news, the world of hot water has changed and there’s a new offer in town. Recently after my tank died, I was introduced to the option of renting a hot water tank. First, it reduced the 600$ sticker price shock of a new tank down to 20$ a month. But what I liked even more was the peace of mind. When there’s a problem, I call the water tank rental company, and they take over. I do my job, and the water tank guy will do his.
That’s exactly what XaaS is all about. Your parking enforcement system can be either part or entirely XaaS. You pay a monthly subscription fee, and a vendor manages all the back-end infrastructure. This may include updating permits, changing configurations and settings, or even proactively suggesting improvements to your current setup. There are no more worries about getting IT involved, figuring out server requirements or dealing with technical issues. The vendor will handle the entire technical installation and maintenance so you can focus on your job of enforcing parking.
Interested in learning more about XaaS for parking enforcement? Visit us at the International Parking Institute (IPI) Exhibition, booth #215 from May 17-20 in Nashville, Tennessee, USA.