Quickbase, a flexible, scalable and maintainable solution for so many business requirements
November 14, 2016

Quickbase, a flexible, scalable and maintainable solution for so many business requirements

Ming Hon | TrustRadius Reviewer
Score 10 out of 10
Vetted Review

Overall Satisfaction with QuickBase

QB is used departmentally and across organizations. We have used QB for:
  • Project Management
  • Outcomes management
  • Supply chain management
  • Volunteer management
  • Capital budgeting
  • Reporting
  • Incident reporting
  • Program management
  • Quickbase generally plays well with other systems in an organization's application ecosystem. This is important as many organizations have multiple applications in their ecosystem and information sharing and cross application reporting is a common requirement. For example, we have used dimensions from CAD software, merged with information from take offs to produce good, better best estimates for a roofing construction client. In another instance we use QB to merge information between a production management system and CRM to track performance. Having a great api and an active user community is extremely important in this regard.
  • We find that QB users love the ability to produce self-serve reports. This is efficient in 2 ways. Users get the exact reports they need in a timely manner because they don't have to ask a QB developer to make the report for them. QB developers can focus on developing great software instead of writing reports.
  • Organizations are ever changing entities and systems requirements evolve along with those changes. In QB it is relatively simple to make changes to a system. The sandbox is a particularly great tool that allows developers to test changes before implementing them in a production environment. Also being able to change labels in fields without penalty of having to manually cascade changes across the system is an incredible time saver.
  • One recent improvement that has made a great difference to many clients is the ability to specify the drill down report associated with a report such as a chart. This is an example of Quickbase' ability to let users customize their experience with the system which has made a great difference in its usability.
  • It would be great to be able to change column labels in summary reports the same way users are able to do so in table reports.
  • It's great to have calculated columns in reports. It would be even better if you can add more than one calculated column per report.
  • It would be great if calculated columns in summary reports could be based on the summarized data instead of underlying data.
  • Having support for different languages would be great. For example in North America, French and Spanish are important in addition to English.
We have created custom applications for many organizations. In the past we have spent much time and resources in creating detailed requirements and production schedules. Using QB we are able to spend less time on requirements gathering and use that time for prototyping instead. Customers love this because users can see tangible results of requirements in a short amount of time. The development process then becomes way more collaborative with is a great win for everyone.
1. Salesforce - SF is very popular on but is painful to create true custom apps on. QB has less functionality out of the box but is way easier to customize.
2. Traditional Web stack (Ruby on Rails, PHP, Bootstrap, Javascript, MySQL, Postgres, etc) The traditional web stack has come a long way in our ability to create applications quickly. However, having a platform like QB take care of the underlying infrastructure, provide role based security, robust reporting that is easily user customizable and a quick and simple development environment is so great that it makes up for a lot of the sacrificed flexibility. One major drawback with QB however is the lack of internationalization.
It is very easy for non-technical users to quickly produce simple applications. However, to design and implement scalable, manageable mission critical applications require the skills of IT professionals especially if any system integration is required. For example, most lay users understand database development from the point of view of a spreadsheet. Normalization and the benefits of relational data is not well understood in this group. User ergonomics is also not normally a strength of many lay users. Creating forms and workflows that are usable by many users in different roles requires some understanding of standard practices and visual norms.
  • Building and deploying business applications faster
  • Improving our ability to drive insights from our data
  • Improving collaboration across one or more teams
  • Solving a specific business challenge
  • Building and deploying an application (or multiple applications) that meets our exact needs
We recently updated a supply chain management tool that was developed 2 years ago. Using the Sandbox tool we were able to test changes to the schema, additional functionality and reporting requirements without affecting production. After testing the Sandbox app, we were able to deploy the application with a few simple clicks. It was great that we were able to focus on the changes to the system rather than having to worry about how to cascade those changes into the production environment.
Not for profit organizations can especially benefit from QB. Most not for profit management solutions are expensive and is generalized for a limited number of types of organizations. Often this leads to having to create work arounds or change the way users have to work or multiple systems have to be used. QB can easily be customized to handle the specific requirements of each organization. For example, donor management is common across not for profits, but programs can be vastly different across organizations. One organization can have simple programs where only program and client management is needed, but in another organization the requirements could be quite complex including loans, housing, client programs and specific cross organization linkages. Being able to use in house terminology, develop systems to adapt to specific processes and integrate easily with other systems make QB ideal in so many NFP organizations.