PowerApps Frequenty Asked Questions (FAQs)
Updated: Dec 12, 2022
Got a question about PowerApps or just want to know a little more about it. Below you'll find the most common questions we get asked about Microsoft PowerApps.
What is PowerApps?
PowerApps is the name Microsoft give to the development platform that comes with Microsoft 365. It allows users of Microsoft 365 to easily create applications and share these with other users of Microsoft 365.
Is PowerApps free?
You get a PowerApps license as part of a Microsoft 365 subscription. However as with all things Microsoft the version you get with your 365 licenses does have certain restrictions. So, if the application you want to build is quite complex or need to connect to systems outside of Microsoft 365 you may need to purchase a extra license.
What kind of things can I build with a PowerApps?
You can really build any system using PowerApps. There are typically two types of PowerApps - Canvas ones - this are generally suitable for smaller business processes such as Holiday Request Systems, Incident Reporting or maybe Project Tracking type systems. While a Model driven application would be used to build a more complex process such as a CRM or Warehouse Management system
How long does it take to build a PowerApps?
We typically say that a simple application like says recording a user’s "one to one" appraisals could take 2 days to create, a holiday request system with approvals would be around 3 days while a more complex incident reporting with different levels of permissions, alerting and reporting would be around 5 days. Even the more complex applications generally doesn’t take more than 10 days to build. Microsoft say applications can be created 80% quicker than using traditional systems.
Do I need to be a programmer to build a PowerApps?
No - Microsoft call PowerApps development "no-code / low co-code". So, while do you do need to understand to a degree the syntax the system uses it is certainly not like traditional programming. In a way it’s very similar to what you may be used to with Excel.
Can I run a PowerApps on an Apple Mac?
Yes, a PowerApps can run any device be that a PC, web browser, mobile or Apple Mac
Can I use a PowerApps on my mobile?
Yes, you can build the app and run this via a mobile
How do users’ access PowerApps?
Most people will put a button on their intranet to launch the applications. However, you can download PowerApps to your device and access directly via that or just go to PowerApps from within Microsoft 365.
Can people outside my company use the PowerApps I create?
We generally say that PowerApps are designed for internal use. This is because the users need a 365 or PowerApps license to access them. There is a "PowerApps Portal" add-on that allows external user to logon and access forms and data. This does require additional licensing.
I use MS Forms - Why do I need a PowerApps?
Microsoft Forms is a great and easy way to move your paper-based forms online, and for many using MS Forms is all you need. However, when a user submits there MS Form there is no way for them to logon and see what has happened with that request. So, for example lots of companies will use MS Form for manager to tell HR there is a new starter. The form will go to HR who then have to setup a number of things for the new employee e.g. Payroll number, access badge, order a laptop etc... If you did this using PowerApps a manager could submit the New Starter form and then logon and see that HR have assigned the payroll number, have allocated the badge but that the laptop hasn't yet been ordered. So, a PowerApps can really manage a whole process.
Does PowerApps use Power Automate?
Yes a PowerApps will often use Power Automate to send out alerts or approvals etc..
Where does PowerApps save its data?
With a Microsoft 365 license PowerApps can save its data either into Excel or SharePoint. You can however connect PowerApps to other databases such a SQL, Data verse etc... if you have a PowerApps license
Can I use PowerApps with MS Teams?
Yes, you get a free PowerApps license with MS Teams so you can start building apps that work and are accessed within MS Teams
Can PowerApps connect or integrate with systems outside of Microsoft 365?
Yes - PowerApps has the ability to connect to hundreds of none Microsoft systems
Can you help us build PowerApps?
Yes - we would love to help you build PowerApps for your business - why not contact us to discuss this further