The most common software application platforms are used by millions of people every day. They're designed to help with specific tasks, simplify workflows, and improve communication across teams.
Sometimes, application software comes pre-built, with elements you can customize — like the examples listed above. Other times, you'll have the chance to build the whole thing yourself using low-code technology.
What you want to be sure of is that the application software is helpful to you — whether that's providing a service you're interested in, connecting you with others, or automating manual processes.
Business application software is a subset of the application software. These programs are built to facilitate certain business functions and improve the accuracy, efficiency, and effectiveness of operations by saving time and enhancing productivity.
An app is a piece of software designed for a single purpose or a single function. An application, however, is a piece of software that performs a variety of related functions. Typically, if an app breaks, life goes on, while applications are considered critical to normal business function and are therefore considered to be of higher value.
Additionally, apps are typically associated with mobile personal-use, whereas applications are associated with use on all devices and typically serve personal and business needs.
|Single purpose||Performs a variety of related functions|
|Not critical for business function||Critical for business function|
|Mobile First||Can be used with full features across many device types|
|Typically associated to with personal use only||Typically associated with personal and business use|
On-premise application software is implemented at an organization’s physical location, leveraging the hardware, IT infrastructure, and support of that organization. The company’s IT department typically maintains and solves problems related to the software.
Hosted application software, also called Software As A Service (SaaS), is software that is owned, delivered, and managed remotely via the cloud by a provider separate from the purchasing organization. Many organizations license these programs at the same time, and organizations typically pay per user or via a subscription.
One advantage of on-premise software is that it can be customized to the individual company’s needs more easily. However, hosted application software programs generally allow users to scale up more quickly.
|Managed at organization's physical location||Delivered remotely|
|Pay for license||Pay per user via subscription|
|More customizable||Scales more quickly|
Application software is an end-user program typically divided into two classes: application software and systems software. Systems software provides an operating system and utilities that enable applications software such as database programs, spreadsheets, web browsers, and more to run.
An application platform provides services to an application, and is comprised of the set of tools an application relies on to run. Virtually every application relies on other software to run, from database management software to the cloud. This group of software together is what we call an application platform. An application platform should support an application in every style, from single-user applications on a device to thousand-user applications in the cloud. Application platforms typically include the following services: an operating system, execution services (such as libraries for running software), data services, cloud services and development tools.
|Application Software||Application Platform|
|Single end-user program||Group of software and services an application relies on to run|
|Database programs, spreadsheets, web browsers, etc.||Group of services to support use of database programs, spreadsheets, web browsers, etc.|
Quickbase is an application platform that empowers builders to create their best application software solutions. Through our low-code rapid application development software, we provide the tools needed to enact change and improve efficiency. We are driven by the belief that those who are most impacted by application software are those that should head the development thereof because they have the clearest sense of what is needed and how they will be best served.
System software is a computer program that runs a computer's hardware, as well as application programs and interfaces between actual hardware and applications. An example of systems software is an operating system, which manages all other programs on a computer.
Conduct A Needs Assessment — Selecting a solution that’s best for your organization should begin with a needs assessment in which you solicit feedback from managers, colleagues, partners, and providers.
You’ll want to first understand the problem the application software must solve, the type of tasks and processes the solution should positively impact, and the target user for the solution. Some of the things to consider as part of a needs assessment are:
Phased Or All-At-Once Implementation: You should have a solid handle on implementation — including how the new solution will be rolled out (phases versus all at once, enterprise-wide versus single business unit, organized training versus self-directed training), how you will offer support, and how you will measure short and long-term success — before you sign on the dotted line.