The advantages and demand for bespoke software is very high today given the fact that most businesses aspire for a digital-friendly operational model. This remains true in the case of small businesses as they too focus on uniqueness and customized solutions to solve their everyday challenges.
Several enterprises often make the mistake of building their own software in-house or buy expensive ready-made software or commercial off the shelf software. Either of these approaches can be dangerous in the long run because of the risks involved in empowering your business activities with this software.
Over the years, we have seen that software too has its natural cycle of evolution. From infrastructure-heavy, on-premise software installations, the world has moved into a subscription-based cloud-ready software environment. Also, the rise of artificial intelligence, smart automation, big data analytics and the Internet of Things have created new possibilities for businesses to explore with their digital capabilities.
So now comes the important question:-
What are the advantages of bespoke software development compared to off the shell or ready-made software?
In other words, should you invest in a ready-made software solution with in-house staff for deployment or should you have a unique software development partner who can build bespoke software for your business?
In most cases, the better choice is to partner with a bespoke software development company for your business applications.
Here are Top 5 advantages that every small and medium business stands to enjoy if they choose to build bespoke software tailored for their unique software solutions:
1) Technology Excellence
If your core business is not focused exclusively on technology, then it is a sure fact that you will have less experienced in-house personnel to guide on selecting the right tech for your business.
By right tech, we mean picking the right software platforms, utilizing best practices to implement and customize solutions using the platform. Not only this, but the right technology partner can also help you identify new avenues in your business where digital channels can create new monetization opportunities for their advantage.
An example would be an e-commerce website if you are predominantly into retail selling. The right bespoke software development partner can find the perfect e-commerce solution for you, implement it with uniqueness and personalization to suit your specific business needs and ensure that it can be extended for your advantages in future depending on your business growth.
2) Cost Efficiency
Most small businesses have a high focus on optimized costing for their resources and doesn’t plan on investing heavily on IT since other areas of their core business often require heavy financial muscle.
So, if such companies go in for in-house IT development and buy off the shelf software for their needs, then there will be huge cost implications.
The first one would be the need to hire and maintain a large team of IT folks to facilitate development, manage IT projects concurrently and ensure the team stays with you for long tenure since IT will be a continuously evolving pillar of your business.
Secondly, the cost of infrastructure needed for facilitating software development will be a huge burden on your expense sheet. The biggest contradiction here is that these 2 main financial implications must be adjusted into your operational expenses even though they are not part of your core business operations. IT is an enabler for your business and hence going for off the shelf software can burn your pockets deep.
A bespoke software development partner can prove to be more advantageous, on the other hand can offer you technology development services on demand in agreed SLA’s and pricing models and ensure that your IT infrastructure is up and running to support business operations seamlessly. Flexible pricing models enable you to pay for only what you utilize, be it staff or platform utilization.
3) Flexible Growth
When you go in for bespoke software development, there is the added benefit of the software being customized for your business’s growth pace. It can be built with a flexible technology architecture that allows it to be extended in terms of processing power or features as your business growth.
A cloud friendly development architecture will ensure that you can add more storage, processing power and handle multiple deployments in the future when your business picks up pace and volume of operations handled by the software increases.
Besides, having a dedicated technology partner for your bespoke software development can help you mitigate the challenges that occur due to process and business workflow changes that take place in future.
Such a partner can also ensure that the custom software developed for your business can seamlessly accommodate these changes in due time with minimal effort and better cost efficiency than off the shelf software solutions. This is one of the key pillars that prove the importance of bespoke software development for small businesses.
4) Ownership of Software
When you invest and implement a commercial off the shelf software in your business, the software’s IP and other resources are owned by the provider and for every future business-related changes need in your software, you need to depend on the vendor to facilitate customization of the core product.
While most vendors do support this customization, it is to be noted that it will be a lengthy and very frustrating process. Having to invest money and then wait for the software vendor’s time to allow customization is not something any business owner would appreciate.
This is where the advantage of bespoke software development kicks in. When you partner with a bespoke software development company to build your own business software, all software IP and technical capabilities are owned by your business. There is no delay and no limit to changing the software as your business demands in future.
Your bespoke software development partner will be more than happy to do the customizations needed to keep your business applications on par with the best in the industry. The biggest benefit is that you get to keep full ownership of your applications which gives you control over what to do with it.
5) Improved Security
When you buy a commercial off the shelf software to power your business needs, then the security protocols and policies of that software is what you will also be inheriting in your business process powered by it.
However, today’s tough privacy and data protection rules in several countries require small businesses to offer stricter and more secure customer data protection policies. Your business may have its own unique security policies that need to be integrated with your digital channels as well.
This is where bespoke software development can be more beneficial. Your custom software development partner can work with you to identify the best security policies, integrate them into the software and ensure that your business applications comply with all regulatory and compliance requirements in the area where you have the business.
Also, it becomes easier to configure new rules when you have ownership of the bespoke solution when there is an opportunity to start a business in a new territory or country.
Bespoke software development is beneficial for small businesses in the long run as explained in our blog. There are significant business advantages you get in terms of cost and growth flexibility when compared to buying commercial off the shelf software. The recent trends which are explained below in graph also show the same.
With bespoke software, your digital infrastructure gets to enjoy the power of uniqueness and personalization that is much appreciated in today’s highly competitive market conditions. Having full control over your technology infrastructure allows you to plan and mitigate challenges in the future as they arise.
Your apprehensions on data security and costs involved in outsourcing can be easily addressed by selecting a bespoke software development company as your technology partner.
With close to a decade of helping small and medium businesses embrace the latest technology solutions and bespoke software in their business, Citrusbug is well-positioned to meet your custom software development needs.
Our consultants bring to the table, years of experience, technology prowess and quality skills needed to help transform your business with software. Get in touch with us to know more on how Citrusbug can be your bespoke software development partner.