When young companies start out they typically either use the “paper method” (including Excel based methods) for information capturing. As they start becoming more successful, they may turn to “off-the-shelf” software systems to help streamline some business, and operational processes - such as invoicing, leave capturing, payroll, etc. systems.
The more affordable packaged software products might do the job for you while you are establishing yourself, but as you grow into a larger business, you may need to start looking for something a little more custom that can mould to your business processes as opposed to the other way around.
Cost of Custom Software
Many people shy away from investigating custom software options, thinking that these systems are unaffordable. They may not be all that wrong. Historically enterprise level software was expensive to build, because for the most part programmers used more expensive programming languages as the foundation; or in the case of C++, programmers with extensive knowledge of the language were hard to come by, which resulted in bringing in external resources who were quite expensive.
With open-source programming stacks (LAMP; Python, Java, C#, C++ and more modern ones such as Angular, Vue and Svelte) becoming more and more prevalent as well as trusted, the cost of creating custom enterprise software systems has naturally become a more affordable option.
Benefits of Custom Software
- Customisation - The top reason to consider custom software is as the name suggests - it’s custom. It is created for your specific business requirements and operational processes. “Off-the-shelf”, or “packaged” software has the same features for anyone that uses it, whereas custom software is fully adapted to meet the needs of the business.
- More Secure - Using standard software is risky because if there are any vulnerabilities, hackers can exploit this across all companies using that system. Whereas with custom-made software, it is developed for one particular business, and extra security standards can easily be built into the solution at the start.
- Scalability - Custom software can adapt and change with your growing, and changing business requirements, whereas most packaged solutions can’t easily provide the flexibility most companies may need.
- Integration & productivity - Many companies utilise multiple software programs to fulfil their varied operational requirements. Custom software can take this into account and work these systems into one interface - thus reducing stress and increasing productivity.
- Cost Effective - Whilst, in some instances the development of custom software might be more expensive than buying a run-of-the-mill packaged solution, it is worth it in the long run. Some off-the-shelf solutions require additional investment to purchase add-on modules you might need as you grow.
As your business grows, software plays a key role in the overall organisational growth and efficiency. As mentioned in the benefits, in some instances the development of custom software might be more expensive than buying a run-of-the-mill packaged solution, but it is worth it in the long run - as it’s yours.
Platinum Software is a custom software development agency focussing on providing custom, enterprise level solutions to businesses. We partner with our clients every step of the way during the development process to ensure our clients receive an agile product, exactly right for them. Get in touch to discuss your requirements if you’re considering the next step in your business software.