As the Digital Transformation shift continues, companies are becoming more sensitive about their data security, and so they should be.
When we hear people talking about native vs. non-native apps for Salesforce, there appears to be confusion about what this means. So let’s help clear this up!
100% Native is the ultimate mark of security, data integrity and ease of use.
There are some key things to look out for when comparing native v’s non-native applications, which will help you decide what is best for your organisation.
What does Native mean?
Native applications must meet the minimum requirements of:
- Built 100% on the Salesforce Platform, providing reliability, scalability and performance. Which means the app operates purely inside of your Salesforce Org with no external servers or code
- Uses Salesforce objects, either standard or custom objects to store any data
- Is available on the AppExchange and the listing is tagged as a ‘Native App’ by Salesforce
Being native ensures all your data stays within your Salesforce instance/Org. There is no requirement for data syncing, user profile management (or syncing), data mapping, integrations or API’s. So there is less to manage, less to learn and far less risk involved in deploying a 100% native app.
NOTE: Most apps are NOT 100% native and will use API’s for integration and have data that will go outside of your Salesforce Org.
What does being Native mean for Improved Apps?
Our experience working with Fortune 500 companies in financial services, healthcare, business services and medical organisations has allowed us to become a trusted partner for those needing to keep their data secure.
Importantly it means we can leverage all your existing user context, already stored securely within Salesforce, e.g. user profile, job role, language, country and use this to surface relevant content to users. No additional set up is required.
Because all of our help topics use salesforce components, users can simply use Salesforce Global Search or Einstein to search for any relevant help content or notifications – making it easy and simple to find the right information at the point of need, to complete the task in hand, and be compliant, from any supported device.
There is no need for browser plug-ins/extensions and we are browser agnostic, which means unlike our competitors (and MyTrailhead), our solutions work on Experience Cloud and mobile devices and no data leaves your trusted Org. Our apps are flexible enough to be used in all the core clouds, by any industry, role or department to provide context aware help, training and knowledge to ensure process compliance throughout the entire user, customer or partner journey.
A 100% native app does not need to integrate with Salesforce, integration is a given! Therefore all of your private data stays within Salesforce and is not stored on any external servers. The less places your data is housed, the less susceptible you are to a security threat. In addition, since a native app lives within your Salesforce org, it automatically adheres to the security settings already established by your business.
The main problem with third party (integrated) applications is that the information is generally stored with the third party. This means all your customer data and transaction information is held by the third party. They then plug it into Salesforce and share that data. Whether or not you think this is a good or bad thing depends on who wants to own the data and if you have any data residency concerns.
Non-native apps generally take much longer to implement and use because of the need to coordinate deeper with your Salesforce Admins, IT and in some cases, Legal and Security Departments to address any security concerns.
For financial services, healthcare, insurance and other industries where consumer data and compliance is a paramount, non-native applications may be unable to provide the level of security and encryption necessary.
Salesforce addresses security concerns for native Apps listed on the AppExchange by putting these solutions through a periodic and rigorous 6-8 week security review. This is an exhaustive and time consuming process for the app vendor, to ensure any native apps are compliant.
It means that businesses can use native apps with confidence, knowing that they support the highest level of security and best practices in the industry, enforced by Salesforce themselves. Improved App last renewed our security review in April 2021.
Going native is everything when it comes to achieving a seamless, cohesive business process on a single platform. Besides avoiding hidden costs like integration maintenance, you get more value out of your Salesforce stack. Using native applications provides you with a single user interface, data model, and security model for your entire organisation. This also plays a major role in the data integrity vital for all your work from lead generation to customer success.
A 100% native app can usually be up-and-running more quickly than its non-native counterparts. Improved Apps use the existing user context already in place within Salesforce, so there is no need to integrate an external app into your Salesforce Org. Native apps can use Salesforce reports and dashboard functionality which will be familiar to most users and as there is no need for synchronisation so it also means your reports will run faster.
A 100% native app is typically an easier solution than a non-native counterpart because there is no need for an additional user log-in. When a user logs into Salesforce, they will automatically have access to the installed native app’s features through native permission sets and access control that you can manage as you do today for other features or record visibility. This also means that adoption rates and training tend to be much easier, because a team only needs to learn one interface – Salesforce itself, and you already know that technology and administration approach.
A 100% native Salesforce App, means you can sleep at night, rest assured that there is minimal effort setting up or maintaining the app and that your data is secure and safe.
Being 100% native and security reviewed (Aloha Status) also means vendors are held to account by Salesforce and can support all browsers, platforms and languages that Salesforce offers.
Finally managing reports and dashboards is familiar to Salesforce administrators or business analysts and information can be cascaded up into your existing Salesforce Management Information (Reports and Dashboards).
Choosing a 100% native app reduces any technical debt and makes your life so much easier.
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