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Document Capture Solutions in a Subscription Economy

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Alaris Capture Pro Software and Alaris Info Input Solution are now available as a one-year subscription in addition to existing perpetual licensing options.

The Subscription Economy and Document Capture Solutions

In a subscription economy, vendors are allowing customers to either pay as they go or pay via monthly or yearly subscriptions. There has been rapid growth in subscription e-commerce business models over the past five years. They are also becoming increasingly popular in the business world, as buyers appreciate the greater flexibility afforded by this approach. There’s new evidence that the shift is paying off big for businesses — as subscription businesses are already growing 9 times faster than the S&P 500, according to the Subscription Economy Index (SEI) from Zuora. [i]


Capital expenditures (CAPEX), are funds used by a company to purchase major physical goods or services that will be used for more than one year. Operating expenditures (OPEX) are the costs for a company to run its daily business operations.

Software purchases can fall under either category. Software can be considered a long-term asset and qualify as a CAPEX that depreciates over the lifetime of the product or solution. It may also be considered an ongoing cost of doing business, and therefore an OPEX. Organizations choose their preferred business model based on several factors:

  • Budget system/cycles: many enterprise customers are allocated a fixed budget and therefore prefer a one-off payment rather than a subscription.
  • Organizations often struggle to measure their current and future level of usage for software. The ability to know and anticipate usage requirements is key.
  • Company culture and consumer habits. The shift to OPEX via subscription-based models is influenced by company dynamics and the need to follow financial and business preferences. It’s interesting to note that consumers, particularly younger buyers, reportedly tend to prefer subscription-based models.

Why OPEX is Increasingly Preferred for Capture Software

According to a survey conducted by IDC, the acquisition cost of solutions is the largest hurdle for businesses to clear when automating document based workflows[ii]. A subscription model addresses this concern as it allows businesses to pay as they go and align spending with usage of the software. Affordability is the key benefit as OPEX offers a lower barrier to entry.

Scalability is also a critical business need, whether companies face seasonal changes in workload, the business grows or the size of the business changes because of mergers and acquisitions. Subscription-based pricing gives customers the flexibility to scale up and down based on the needs of the business.

The subscription-based model gives subscribers access to the latest software version (a common requirement to take advantage of the latest features and capabilities), and the cloud ensures that everyone is using the same version.

And as improving cash-flow is a common business priority, funding projects from OPEX budgets helps maintain a lean balance sheet while preserving cash flow.

New OPEX Offerings from Alaris

Alaris now offers its software platform as a subscription. Alaris Capture Pro Software and Alaris Info Input Solution are now each available as a one-year subscription in addition to existing perpetual licensing options.

Harvey Spencer from analyst firm HSA notes “we have seen over 100% growth in OPEX related capture services in our latest worldwide capture market report versus overall growth of 11% – clearly the industry is rapidly moving to a services model. In a fast-changing environment, it allows a flexibility of services in response to growing customer demand”

Gartner predicts that “by 2020, all new entrants and 80% of historical vendors will offer subscription-based business models, regardless of where the software resides. ‘What began as a trickle a few years ago has become a stampede of vendors wanting to make a move to a subscription business model’.”[iii]

Capture software will follow trends as businesses look to integrate their software contracts into their subscription-based business models. Kodak Alaris is committed to support clients who prefer traditional perpetual licenses as well as those who prefer a subscription-based model, including partnering closely with businesses during this transition to help choose the option that makes the most sense.

By Petra Beck, Director Customer & Market Intelligence

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