A recent Gartner report predicts worldwide SaaS sales will surpass $8.5 billion in 2010, an increase of 14.1 percent from last year’s $7.5 billion total.

The surge for SaaS stems from lower startup and maintenance costs as compared to in-house desktop software. Instead of purchasing numerous pieces of software and having copies remain unused during employment fluctuations, companies have found cloud computing technology allows them to pay for services as they theed them.

“After a decade of use, adoption of SaaS continues to grow and evolve within the enterprise application markets,” said Sharon Mertz, a Gartner analyst. “As tighter capital budgets demand leaner alternatives, familiarity with the model increases, and interest in platform-as-a-service and cloud computing grows.”

The cost savings associated with a move to the cloud allows businesses to devote resources to other facets of their operations, ensuring they are maximizing growth and productivity.

Mertz said the popularity of SaaS has increased significantly within the past five years, as “initial concerns about security, response time and service availability have diminished for many organizations.”

The future of cloud computing appears to only be getting brighter as the Pew Research Center recently reported the technology will takeover traditional desktop applications by 2020. The research group said, within a decade, users will choose software offered from outside firms as their primary method of computing and communicating.ADNFCR-2553-ID-19911714-ADNFCR