Taiga SaaS or self-managed? How to choose!

It's no longer a matter of cloud versus non-cloud. On-demand, flexible and elastic resources are now the norm. What does remain is the question regarding how you operate a platform like Taiga which deals with your organisation's projects and users.

Many project management tools have gone Software as a Service (SaaS) only. This means you are forced to go for the big supported setup provided by the company behind the service. That would be tree.taiga.io option in our case. It's well known that this approach greatly simplifies release upgrades, operational costs, support and maintenance.

Taiga landing shot

Self-managed, on the other hand, means that you actually run the tool using your own infrastructure, whatever that is. You download, install and operate the platform and keep an eye on update notifications, security patches, etc. This allows you and your organisation to more easily tweak the installation, integrate it with your own authentication system and keep data and projects under your absolute control.

Between 2010 and 2015 there was a clear movement to go full SaaS and companies that would neglect that trend and stay with old-fashioned data-centres were dismissed as resistant to inevitable change. But new breakthroughs in container technology and private cloud commoditisation have made room for quite modern self-managed solutions, perhaps having the best of both worlds for some use cases.

Now, any medium-to-huge organisation is going to think twice before adding yet another tool to their private cloud ecosystem. The fact that you can do it doesn't mean you should do it. Except that Taiga has two key ingredients that make for a compelling case, open source and core-process focus.

Taiga is about choice, it has always been about that since we went past the beta stage in early 2016. You can go self-managed, SaaS or third party self-managed. So, between pure SaaS and Self-managed, how to choose?

You should probably choose SaaS if...

  • You don't need Taiga to be custom integrated with many other tools and platforms, including private authentication systems.
  • You don't want to host and maintain a piece of software that is core to your organisation's productivity and work.
  • You are fine with a per-seat pricing model that scales up nicely (Also, Taiga does have a quite nice free Basic tier).

You should probably choose Self-managed if...

  • You consider your data and projects not to be able to be outside your own infrastructure. Taiga SaaS is European Union hosted.
  • You need more custom integrations apart from Taiga's API / webhooks / live CSVs (also found on Taiga SaaS).
  • You plan to roll out multiple Taiga instances based on your organisation's specific needs.
  • You prefer a flatter annual fee for your organisation (supported instance) or trying it out on your own (unsupported instance).

The nice thing about Taiga is that it's a great team player. Its API and other convenient integration capabilities plus the fact that you can move Taiga projects between Taiga instances (including Taiga SaaS) allows you to start “simple” at tree.taiga.io and decide whether to move to your own Taiga instance later on, or start with your own Taiga instance (with or without support) and, after a while, consider that there's no good reason to maintain it yourself and ask for a full instance migration to SaaS.

It would be amazing if more tools like Taiga could provide a similar degree of flexibility. Unfortunately, we are seeing the opposite trend. This is not consistent with what we believe is core to agile and lean practices and what cross-functional teams and diverse organisation backgrounds demand today.

Whatever option you pick, we hope you'll enjoy having Taiga as your project management platform.

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