Software is becoming one of the world’s biggest industries, and there’s no demographic that generates more business than enterprises.
The top enterprise software companies test their products, add design features that prioritize collaboration, and often include easy customization options so each customer can get the services they need.
The following seven enterprise software companies are some of the best in the world for producing high-quality enterprise application software.
How we’ve chosen the best enterprise software companies
We understand how important it is for businesses to have integrated, feature-rich tech stacks.
At PandaDoc, we combine years of tech and development experience with a precise and ever-evolving understanding of the needs of enterprises and large companies.
When putting together this article, we worked through several review stages intending to build a complete understanding of the strengths and weaknesses of the major software providers.
Here is a quick rundown of our methodology:
- A thorough analysis of the market to account for new enterprise software providers. We were keen to avoid a review that focused exclusively on a handful of well-known names.
- Personal testing and analysis of individual platforms and software suits, particularly to the most common enterprise-level pain points and requirements.
- Comparative analysis of feature sets, pricing, and support packages.
- Overview of existing customer feedback and reviews on sites like G2, Capterra, and TrustPilot.
- Consultation and data collection from the PandaDoc user base where appropriate.
It’s not uncommon for enterprise software companies to offer markedly different apps, support packages, and individual features. What’s more, large businesses often opt for solutions that are designed for small and medium organizations.
As such, enterprise customers need to have access to expert information about the suitability of providers. A small business app, for example, will be unsuitable for a large business that requires a feature-rich software suite, and vice versa.
At PandaDoc, we aim to provide this information concisely and understandably. When we were reviewing different companies we drew particular attention to their intended target market, usability, technical requirements, and core software packages.
Category: Customer Relationship Management (CRM)
Location: San Francisco, CA
One of the most essential things a growing business can do is keep an eye on customer relations. Keeping customers satisfied and handling complaints efficiently and effectively is what Salesforce is all about.
This Software as a Service (SaaS) business focuses on providing a system to help companies keep track of analytics, customer success and support, and even customer complaints, all in one place.
Salesforce offers a wide variety of CRM software functionality, from eCommerce offerings to analytics services to customer support. It even provides new AI programs designed to find patterns in data.
Its early adoption of cloud-based solutions has made it the frontrunner in CRM solutions, fueled by the knowledge of its founder, former Oracle employee Marc Benioff.
It can also be used as a total ERP solution. Today, Salesforce is one of the most successful enterprise software companies globally, with more than 150,000 companies using Salesforce in their business, from Marriott Hotels to Southwest Airlines.
In 2010, co-founder and CEO of Salesforce, Marc Benioff was quoted as saying
“I honestly don’t see Oracle as a competitor.”
and now his company is bigger than Oracle.
What people think about Salesforce software
“Salesforce is an incredible tool to manage the sales workload in the most efficient way.” — g2 review
“The thoughts and details put into this platform are outstanding. Most of the things you need and use in your day-to-day work are already set up and modeled in Salesforce. The level of automation you can achieve with salesforce is also great. Also, the community and culture surrounding the salesforce are worth mentioning.” — g2 review
“Salesforce is being used as a sales tool to manage leads, opportunities, contracts. We don’t use it too much as a CRM tool, at least to the extent we should. We integrate with DocuSign to manage contracts inside the Account and Contract objects. We also use the ‘platform’ part to develop a billing solution that integrates with QuickBooks.” — TrustRadius review
Category: Project Management
Location: Sydney, Australia
Atlassian is another SaaS company that works to make life a little easier for small businesses and large enterprises alike. Its portfolio includes:
- Jira, a project-tracking tool
- Jira Align, an Agile planning system for enterprises
- Confluence, a mobile- and desktop-optimized teamwork tool
- The newly-acquired Trello, a popular project management app
- BitBucket, a code-sharing program
- HipChat, an internal chat client
Atlassian prioritizes making it more straightforward for teams to work together and keep track of their projects without confusion or messy interfaces, making ERP easier.
Atlassian is primarily a back-end set of software, with the ability to scale solutions for everyone from startup teams to massive enterprises.
The company started out focusing on serving software development business processes, but it has since branched out to fit various industries. Customers of Atlassian have included organizations like NASA, the Daily Telegraph, and the non-profit Code.org.
In 2016, Mike Cannon-Brookes, the co-CEO of prominent Australian software company Atlassian, was quoted saying that
“The Australian tech industry needs to do what Israel or other countries have done in tech, and build many pathways to Silicon Valley”
explaining that he believed new tech scenes could emerge without directly competing against the San Francisco Bay Area. Rather they could …build a way to cooperate with them and get the best of both worlds.
This is exactly what Mike Cannon-Brookes has done since starting his company in 2002.
What people think about Atlassian software
“Jira is an overkilled product management tool you can simply use for your every project daily task scenarios and the results will always be great. It required a learning curve, though, and at some point, we had to turn our way to do things to Jira’s way to do things. My overall experience has turned positive now that I have a vast experience using it for my projects, at first it was difficult and painful to require so many steps to do daily management tasks.” — Gartner review
“Our whole team can collaborate on our tasks for each sprint. Being able to pull in tasks from our multi-role team makes it easier for leadership to see and track the amount of effort we are putting into making our customers successful. Drag and drop make prioritizing very easy. I like the concept of the ‘Epic’ for managing groups of tasks. Our engineering team depends on Jira to manage all of their sprints as well. ” — g2 review
Category: Business Communication
Location: San Francisco, CA
Many businesses were slow to adapt their communication practices to the 21st century. For a while, it seemed like professional communication at large companies would freeze at email, while informal communication evolved to include texting, social media, and instant messaging.
Slack is the best of the enterprise software solutions that rose to fill the gap. It acts as a professional instant messaging platform that allows quick, casual communication that’s less complicated than emails.
Slack is a flexible tool that allows users to access multiple “workspaces” across a single account. Organizations can set up multiple persistent chat rooms organized by topic.
Users can also message each other individually. If a user chooses to set up a private group message, they can even convert that group message into a channel to keep things organized.
Slack helps businesses and employees manage their work communication simply, efficiently, and effectively, regardless of the enterprise’s size.
CEO Stewart Butterfield was spot on when he made the case in 2016 for Slack and other software companies, claiming that
” In five years everyone will be using Slack or something like it.”
What people think about Slack software
“Everyone is in full sync, let me manage two teams and customize templates for easy fill out and the best sync for them. It’s a great overall software. It’s easy to send messages, notes, lookup history, templates, and links to Salesforce. A marshaling of different types of features that all come together and increase the overall efficiency of the communication your team has. Apart from all the good work stuff, it’s got a place to talk about everyday occurrences with team members all over the nation. Excellent app. ” — g2 review
“Slack has improved our communication workflow with our team and improved the way we interact with clients. It allows for multiple language[s] to be spoken by using some translation tools, thus including more staff and especially non-english speaking staff.” — Software Advice review
Category: Sales Processes and Document Automation
Location: San Francisco, CA
Most DMS solutions focus on a single aspect of the process. They just provide eSignature tools, or they just help businesses and clients collaborate.
PandaDoc stands apart because it provides all the tools enterprises need to manage and automate documents in a single location. There’s no need to use four other services when PandaDoc can meet all these needs in one place.
As businesses grow, the amount of paperwork involved scales dramatically. Taking steps to manage the documents and paperwork involved in a successful large-scale enterprise saves companies time and money immediately.
With a simple but powerful drag-and-drop editor and one-click uploads, PandaDoc makes it simple for anyone to produce interactive quotes, contracts, and proposals in no time.
Automated reminders and real-time in-platform editing for clients and employees alike help keep negotiations running smoothly and quickly.
In an interview with CEO Mikita Mikado, he explained that he wants PandaDoc to be:
“A place where people are learning, where we are making an impact on the world and on the community we’re in.”
He wants the same for PandaDoc’s clients so that they “have fun while they’re using our product.”
Large businesses can continue to accelerate their growth by keeping document management and creation to a minimum with the powerful PandaDoc templates and software. Keep workflows simple with PandaDoc’s document automation.
What people think about PandaDoc software
“Easy to custom fit the forms to my needs. There’s a free option. It has good notifications. It saves my client’s data in a secure way. We struggled with Adobe Sign and this site has been a salvation for us. I have clients who sign in on their phones or tablets; it’s a major upgrade. It helps us to meet our deadlines and requirements. Really a big blessing. Thank you, PandaDoc. ” — g2 review
“We currently use one license, which is integrated with Pipedrive. We use PandaDoc to create official proposals for clients and link our T&Cs, etc. It’s very easy to use and looks super professional. The e-signature feature is really helpful!” — TrustRadius review
Category: Data Analytics
Location: Seattle, Washington
The larger a company gets, the more data it can collect. That data is a valuable resource, but only if there’s a way to analyze it.
Tableau is a data visualization software dedicated to helping organizations explore, manage, and learn from their data. It’s easily customizable and flexible enough to work on mobile and desktop platforms alike. There’s no easier way to manage business intelligence all in one place.
The service allows organizations to integrate the software with other data sources like Salesforce and Microsoft Office, making it simple to aggregate complex data in one place.
Once data is collected, Tableau presents it in a simple, visual format that makes even massive datasets intuitive to navigate.
With state-of-the-art tools like machine learning systems built in, Tableau is the simplest and most efficient way to find actionable insights on your data.
Former President and CEO at Tableau, Adam Selipsky explained the reason for the integration software with Salesforce was because “there was a lot of attractiveness on the marketing and sales side. Salesforce has many, many thousands of field reps around the world.”
He continued to say that “there would be a ton of possibilities when they began passing leads from either joint customers or new customers into our field.”
What people think about Tableau software
“This is a wonderful data visualization software that’s a big upgrade from typical Excel charts. Once you figure out how to use it, it does most of the ‘heavy lifting’ for you. It can guess what charts you might want, and is very helpful with analysis.” — g2 review
“I have worked on domains like Telecom and Network where I have been using Tableau. It’s really liked by senior management as it shows each and every bit very clearly to relevant stakeholders. For example, the marketing head likes the region-wise revenue sale dashboard which gives region/sales manager/product wise sale.” — Software Advice review
Category: File Hosting
Location: San Francisco, CA
One of the most complicated parts of moving to work at home is accessing essential files safely and remotely.
Dropbox, a world-class cloud-based file hosting service, allows employees to access files whenever and wherever they may need them. It has been ranked as one of the most important startups globally and it’s simple to implement it on mobile and desktop platforms alike.
CEO Drew Houston explains that he started Dropbox because he kept forgetting his thumb drive and
“was so frustrated because he felt like this kept happening,” and “never wanted to have the problem again, so having nothing else to do… he started writing some code to find a solution, having no idea what it would become.”
Files are stored in the cloud, but any user with access to a given file can open it from anywhere as long as they have an internet connection.
The software system allows users to access files through a folder on their device as if it was stored there. Users can collaborate on documents from anywhere in the world without the risk of lost data or confusing version control.
Dropbox provides flexible pricing and scalability for all types of business needs, from individual freelancers through enterprise-level software requirements.
In a work environment where collaboration and effective remote work are equally important, Dropbox helps businesses balance their workforce’s needs with ease.
What people think about Dropbox software
“Dropbox has all the functionality I’m looking for – works on all my devices, syncs everything, plenty of storage when you subscribe.” — g2 review
“Dropbox is being used by the entire organization. We share high-resolution photos, sales documents and more. It’s easy to access and saves time saving things to Dropbox.” — TrustRadius review
Category: Identity Management
Location: San Francisco, CA
Enterprise-level businesses involve hundreds or even thousands of individuals, and customers increase that number even further. Keeping track of different users across platforms, devices, and programs is a monumental task, and it’s important to prevent security risks.
Okta Identity Management provides a number of services that help keep user identity clear, whether you’re connecting your workforce or keeping track of your customers.
Okta’s services include Single Sign-On, allowing everyone from your employees to your clients to sign on with a single log-in, B2B integration capabilities, and robust user authentication offerings.
Keeping tabs on the users involved in your company helps you track access, prevent security breaches, and manage accessibility, all in one place.
The company’s customers include athenahealth, Canadian Western Bank, and Cengage, all businesses that value security and privacy for their customers.
Todd McKinnon, chief executive of Okta Inc., built his success by “staying current” and explained that
“Stay[ing] current is to spend time with the engineers and ask them about what they’re working on to build a billion-dollar company.”
What people think about Okta software
“I like that with Okta I can now set up only one password that will work with all the systems and apps I use to work, I used to forget all my credentials and usually had my accounts locked, Now, I don’t have to worry about it because with Okta I just login on it and the rest goes by itself!” — g2 review
“If cost is not an issue, this should be the tool to go to. This is one of the best IAM tools available out there. The deployment and app integration with Okta is fairly simple. The tool is very admin-friendly and user-friendly. Due to its ease of use and wide variety of features that it offers, it is one of the best IAM tools and regarded as one of the best SSO solutions out there. ” — Software Advice review
Frequently asked questions
Computer software companies use one of two models when it comes to user acquisition: top-down and bottom-up. The top-down model is often used in IT purchases because anything that’s intended for use company-wide is best managed from one place.
As a result, many large enterprise software companies focus on a top-down model. Examples of enterprises that use this model include Microsoft, Salesforce, and Okta.
Top-down models can be unwieldy, especially in modern enterprises. People prefer not to change what works, and top-down acquisition requires an entire enterprise to change their model at once. However, for companies like Okta, which focus on maintaining company-wide security, it may be necessary anyway.
Sales participation rates are the number of salespeople who achieve or go beyond their annual quota for sales. The sales participation rate can vary greatly depending on the organization, but high-performing enterprise software companies frequently see rates higher than 70%.
These high participation rates show that the organization is growing rapidly and seeing significant success.
Software capacity is the amount of traffic that a given application and environment can handle. Software providers who coordinate with large enterprises need to test their software capacity to ensure that their product can handle the amount of work it will need to perform for their customers.
Many companies test enterprise software capacity by using automated test tools to simulate end-users.
However, this can cause problems if the test tools are not set up to properly emulate normal business activities. Practical capacity tests need to include careful documentation to make sure that they actually test the software in the way that it will be used during both standard and heavy load times.