Software is “a set of instructions or programs instructing a computer to do specific tasks.” (Techopedia, “What is Software? – Definition from Techopedia”). Software is a general term to describe computer programs. Other terms to describe software are scripts, applications, programs, and sets of instructions. Below are some frequently asked questions (FAQ) that relate to software:
- What is Software as a Service (SaaS)?
- Software as a Service is a distribution model for software in which third-party provider hosts applications and makes them available to people over the internet. SaaS removes the need for organizations to install applications on their computers. It also updates automatically with customer intervention.
- What are the benefits of using SaaS?
- Flexible payments
- Instead of purchasing software to install and additional hardware to support it, customers can subscribe to a SaaS. Typically, paying monthly using a pay-as-you-go method is standard for SaaS. Customers using SaaS can terminate it at any time to stop recurring costs.
- SaaS can save people time because installing these applications usually requires an internet connection and a login-in. Maintenance responsibilities are shifted to the vendor instead of the IT department, so it will eliminate extra work hours and downtime that might be needed to upgrade software. These applications also have a smaller learning curve which means quicker adaption across the workforce.
- Users can customize applications to better fit their business without affecting their infrastructure. Customizations are unique to each company or user and are preserved through upgrades. This means that SaaS providers can make upgrades more often with less risk to the customer and a lower adoption cost.
- What are the benefits of using SaaS?
- What is productivity software?
- Productivity software is a type of application program that helps users create documents, databases, worksheets, graphs, and presentations (Rouse & Wigmore, 2015). Many productivity applications are intended for business use, but users can also use them for other purposes. Productivity software are also available on mobile devices.
- Word Processing
- Word processing is a program that can create, store, and print typed documents (Computer Hope, 2018). Word processors are one of the most frequently used programs on a computer. All word processors vary, but whether they are cloud-based or installed on a system, they still support basic features (Beal, 2018). Modern word processors support additional features that allow you to manipulate and format documents to make them look more sophisticated.
- Spreadsheet software can organize, storing, and analyzing in a table (Techopedia, 2018). In this application, you can have multiple spreadsheets open with text, numbers, or even graphs on them. Data in spreadsheets are represented by cells, organized in rows and columns, and the cells can contain text or numbers. Spreadsheet software also has the benefit of allowing the user to use calculations and functions.
- Presentation software is a program used to create words and pictures on slides to tell a story or help support a speech or public presentation (Rouse, 2011). This type of software can be divided into business presentation software and general multimedia authoring tools, but both provide tools that allow users to make their presentation look more sophisticated and have audio. Some popular presentation software are Microsoft PowerPoint, Window Movie Maker, and Keynote.
- Database software is a program that can store, modify, extract, and search for information within a database. “A database program is the heart of a business information system and provides file creation, data entry, update, query and reporting functions.” (PC Magazine, 2018). This software is usually used for several things like bookkeeping and compiling a client list. Some popular database software are Microsoft Access, FileMaker Pro, MySQL, and Oracle.
- This is a software that allows the user to collect, organize, and share digital information (Stroud, 2018). It is also helpful because it allows the user to organize notes, research, brainstorm, and collaborate. This software is designed to allow for easy note-taking without having to conform to a format and give you the ability to organize and retrieve notes to fit your needs. Some popular note-taking applications are Microsoft OneNote, Evernote, Google Keep, Simplenote, and Dropbox Paper.
- What is PIM (personal information management) software?
- PIM software uses tools to manage contacts, calendars, tasks, appointments, and other personal data. This application can serve as a planner, notebook, address book all in the same program. PIMs allow people to access their information from any device. Microsoft Outlook and Gmail are the most used PIMs.
- Will it be useful for my employees?
- Yes, PIMs are useful to employees because I can help them manage their schedules. It also allows them to see when deadlines are for projects or when a meeting is scheduled. PIM software can store personal information about customers, employees, and distributors.
- What types of software are helpful for small businesses?
- “The best small business software empowers you to run your business smoothly and efficiently.” (Schenker, 2016). Accounts, office productivity, email, and communications are available in most software packages. The software will generally help the business to increase or measure productivity, save time or money, and make staff or processes more efficient.
- What types of software are helpful for large businesses?
- Project management software, customer relationship management (CRM), enterprise resource planning(ERP), e-commerce, marketing and sales, finance, the point of sale, security, networking, date management, and human resources are the types of software that can be helpful to large businesses. Companies need to choose the applications that are properly tailored to their business. If the company has the right software to help with organizing and analyzing data will help with decision-making.
- What do I need to know about software licenses?
- Software licensing describes “the legal rights regarding the authorized use of digital material.” (Techopedia, 2018). Failure to follow this agreement can often incur criminal charges related to licensed intellectual property and copyright material. It also defines the responsibilities of the parties entering into the license agreement and may have restrictions on how the software can be used.
- How do I determine which version of software will work on the computers in our business?
- When looking for software that is compatible with your business, it is important to see if it is compatible with all the computers in your office. Determining how much storage space your computers have can also help you figure out which software is right for you. Software websites and the packaging that the software comes in lists computer specifications that are required for the software to work for your computers.
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