We hear about application packaging all the time, but what is it and why should organizations care?
Quite simply, application packaging is the process used to get necessary software onto the devices of users – quickly and easily. It involves creating a package of files for each type of software that an organization uses. Organizations that want to stay current, relevant and secure, should look at an application packaging strategy.
What does application packaging mean?
With hundreds of thousands of software options available to organizations, and each user demanding something unique, its become more and more important to manage how these apps are updated, patched and kept secure.
Think cost savings, efficiency, relevancy and competitiveness.
If we’ve caught your attention, then your organization will want to consider an application packaging strategy. The impact can be extensive, as organizations can easily upgrade software, quickly deliver apps to users, and most importantly, allow IT to troubleshoot at a macro level.
When looking at an application packaging plan for your organization, there are a number of things to consider:
- How will the application packaging process fit in to your software management strategy?
- What are your software and user requirements?
- What will be involved in testing and how will the software be distributed?
- What does a standardized environment look like for your organization?
This brings us to the process. At its simplest, the application packaging process involves 5 steps:
- Application Request | Users within an organization make requests and specify all relevant details.
- Build | Apps are built based on instructions, best practices, and rules. The process involves QA, where the application source file is validated and verified as functional.
- Import | Applications are downloaded and imported into Configuration Manager.
- Test | An app tester is assigned to verify deployment and check app functionality.
- Publish | Apps are published to the production environment by assigning the right users/devices to groups.
The benefits of application packaging are far-reaching, with the effects felt across departments and include:
- Lower Support Costs | Application packaging reduces support costs. This is largely because the process creates a stable environment that allows IT teams to address issues immediately and on a large scale.
- Ease of Distribution| If you have hundreds or thousands of devices, installing software manually is not realistic. Application packaging allows you to distribute to all users, no matter where they are – with ease and simplicity.
- Software Management| Once the software has been installed on all relevant devices, IT teams are responsible for keeping everything working well, adding devices, fixing issues, etc. Using a Configuration Manager, IT teams are able to manage and deploy software in a significantly easier manner than without.
- Minimizing Security Risks| Application packaging helps reduce the security threat for organizations. This is because the streamlined process means that less users need to have “admin” status (an inherent security issue).
- Control Over Software Installation | All software installations go through the IT department, eliminating the possibility of unnecessary or illegal software copies.
With application packaging, software distribution has become easier than ever. Want to learn more?
Download our eBook that includes everything you need to know to get started with application packaging.
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