Whether you offer professional services or run an established company, your business is rooted and grounded in a particular industry. The operations here often attract software developers who claim to provide services tailored to your business. However, this standard software is usually made to work for many different kinds of businesses, so that doesn’t mean it will be customized to you and your company’s needs. It is, therefore, high time you considered finding actual custom software that fits your business operations and customer needs. But what are some of the pros and cons of investing in custom-made software?

Here are some of the benefits your business stands to gain from customized software:

Competitive Advantage

Some aspects of your business like accounting or HR management are relatively standard. Other aspects aren’t and therefore, can’t be left at the mercy of off-the-shelf software. These aspects represent core operations that are essential for your business’s survival and set it apart from the competition.

In such a case, don’t force your vital business operations to adjust to the confines of the software. Instead, consider investing in software that lets your business exploit its full potential and maximize on its competitive advantage. Such software supports specialized services, reduces operational costs, and streamlines operations leading to improved customer service.

Addresses Problems Specific to Your Business

Unlike custom software that addresses your business-specific problems, standard software deals with industry-related issues. However, to outdo the competition, you will need your personalized business software that solves problems specific to your business.

Communication and Privacy

When you go for off-the-shelf software, you often don’t have control of whatever data the software keeps. Plus the developers still retain the copyright to the use of their software. Some even pry into your company data in the name of helping the developers improve your interaction with the software. What happens when you handle confidential client information or employee communications and other sensitive company data?

If you don’t want such information leaking into the public domain, you need to come up with custom software and copyright its IP. Such a move gives you a sense of privacy as it grants you absolute control over the amount of sensitive company data spilling out to the public. You are also in a better position to safeguard against other threats to company information such as hacks. Most importantly, it helps your business gain the all-important customer confidence.

Improves Productivity

Standard software doesn’t allow for business flexibility or agility. It limits you and your business as most don’t provide room for business expansion. The fact that there is a wide gap between the developers and your employees means that they often have to learn how to use the software on a trial and error basis, a fact that may prove costly to your business.

It also lowers employee morale thus resulting in a decline in productivity. However, customized software that uniquely speaks to the needs of your business and is user-friendly will not only boost employee morale but also enhance their creativity and productivity.

Access to Technical Support

Before and during the entire process of developing custom software for your business, the development team keeps in touch with your company. They show up and interact with different employees and systems to gain a better understanding of how things work and how they can be transformed into a comprehensive software. They are also there during its installation and initial stages of its operationalization teaching your staff members on how to interact with it.

This implies that you are less likely to experience technical challenges with the software and should they occur, you won’t have to wait for hours on a call to speak to a customer representative. The close relationship grants you direct access to the development team who are able to aptly resolve any issues within the shortest time possible.

Primary limitations to designing custom software for your business:

Cost Implications

Despite the immense benefits associated with investing in custom-made software for your company, most institutions still opt for standard off-the-shelf software due to their inexpensive nature. To a large extent, they write off the cost implication associated with software development as an expense other than an investment.

Bottom Line

If you hope to outshine the competition, instill customer confidence in your brand, and improve employee productivity, you need to invest in custom software. Look beyond the cost implications associated with such a project and concentrate more on the convenience and flexibility such software offers your business. You might even consider licensing it to competition to help recover the development and maintenance costs while assuming the industry leader tag.

Do you have more questions about your business IT? Reach out to us! We can help you improve your efficiency and develop a plan to take your business to the next level.

References:

Small-Business Software

Custom Software Development

Build vs. Buy: When You Should Build Custom Software Over Canned Solutions