Drucker (1993) predicted that the impact of information technology in the global economy will be as widespread as that during the Industrial revolution. The technical process of information technology (IT) management has become more simplistic with the introduction of conventional approaches. It all revolves around the concept of replacing traditional methods with computers and other gadgets. The aim of this transition is promote productivity and ensure that the organisations are highly efficient. Aside from these basic goals, the extensive use of technology has reduced overhead costs and other forms of expenses.
Since the demand for computers and other similar commodities have increased, some innovators have realised the potential of creating businesses out of such products. With this development, the application service provider (ASP) became a well-known concept. ASP is designed to provide computer-based services through established networks. The process involves the provision of access to particular application program.
According to Parveen (2001) ASP is an emerging form of service provider concentrated on delivering outsourced application hosting services. ASP is used to manage and distribute application capabilities to a wide range on entities from a data centre across both public and private Internet on a rental conditions. Commonly used ASPs include: enterprise resource planning applications, e-commerce, customer relationship management, productivity applications, e-mail, and unified messaging services. These applications are highly valued in firms and demanded by both multinational and small and medium enterprises.
The industry is still in its development period and was motivated by the dot com era. Because the needs for such applications continue it is expected that the industry will continue to improve. Logically, the process of ASP development is highly dependent on several circumstances. First, infrastructures that promote the internet have to be established with reliability. Second, the utility of the browser needs to be a universal client for the internet enabled application. Third, server-based computing models have to be developed. Finally, the available bandwidth has to adequately satisfy the requirements of the application.
The applications are obtained from outside suppliers which eventually become the ASP. Some of the fundamental aspects related to ASP creation are up-front capital expenses, challenges in the implementation, and the continuous process of maintenance, improvements, and customisation (Smith, 2001). Most of the firms requiring ASP are keen on improving their financial and business applications that are critical in their performance.
The idea of using ASP is centred on the use of software to replace the conventional business process. For instances, firms use the email instead of the usual meetings conducted to relay information. In addition, the finance department will be aided by the presence of accounting software. The use of ASP has expanded and even technical procedures have been embraced by the industry. ASP firms continue to explore the necessities of firms and study the improvements in technology. As an emerging industry, some companies that have no technological