An enterprise application is the term used to describe applications -- or software -- that a business would use to assist the organization in solving enterprise problems. When the word "enterprise" is combined with "application," it usually refers to a software platform that is too large and too complex for individual or small business use.
Enterprise applications are typically designed to interface or integrate with other enterprise applications used within the organization, and to be deployed across a variety of networks (Internet, Intranet and corporate networks) while meeting strict requirements for security and administration management.
Proprietary enterprise applications are usually designed and deployed in-house by a specialized IT development team within the organization. However, an enterprise may outsource some or all of the development of the application, and bring it back in-house for deployment.
Today, using enterprise application service providers (ASP) is more prevalent. Here, the enterprise application is designed by a third-party application service provider and leased to the enterprise, as an on-premise or hosted service. This is also often referred to software-as-a-service (SaaS) or Web-based applications.
Another trend in enterprise applications is the move to cloud computing, where the enterprise moves some or its entire infrastructure to the cloud -- a type of Internet-based computing, where services are delivered to an organization's computers and devices through the Internet as an on-demand service. Some enterprises may also choose a hybrid solution where cloud applications are integrated with on-premise systems.
Some of the more common types of enterprise applications include the following:
Other common names for enterprise application include enterprise app, enterprise software and enterprise application software (EAS).