What is Custom Software?
Custom Software is software that is written specifically for you or your business. It is designed and developed to fulfil a specific need. It is built to your specific requirements and designed to comply with your company’s procedures.
What are the advantages of having a bespoke software application written for my business?
For the normal everyday tasks performed by the majority of companies such as accountancy, writing letters and contact management, there are some pretty good packages out there and it doesn’t always make sense to reinvent the wheel. But when it comes to industry (or company) specific tasks, the off-the-shelf software available, if any, will be aimed at the mass market and therefore very general. And when the software doesn’t work the way you want it to you have to make compromises, which often leads to less efficient working and higher costs. With a bespoke application, it’s written specifically for your business and it’s designed to work the way you want it to.
- Greatly reduced training and supervision required by staff, which is more cost-effective.
- A reduction in number of mistakes made, increasing efficiency.
- Often cheaper, particularly if you are a larger firm. Most commercial packages charge per user for their licenses, so they can get quite expensive. Custom written software is usually charged on a per system basis regardless of the number of users.
- It is a great way to make a statement about your company. Incorporating your unique look and feel into the software will help strengthen your brand and your company’s image with customers, investors, partners and amongst your employees.
How do I Determine if I Need Custom Software?
Fully defining the problem is a critical first step. Conducting a thorough needs analysis will help you through this process. To start, ask yourself the following questions:
What is it about our current system that is most frustrating or troublesome?
Talk to your staff and customers to get their input. Those that use your current system usually know best how it can be improved.
- What is it that we want to achieve?
- What steps are required to solve the problem?
- How will changes to our current system affect our operations?
- What will happen to our company if we don’t solve our problem?
- Is new software the solution to our problem?
- If so, does it already exist in an off-the-shelf-format?
- Would the off-the-shelf product be cost effective?
- Does the off-the-shelf package do everything we need it to?
- In solving this problem, what is most important to our company: time, quality, price and/or service?
How could my business or idea benefit from a website?
The internet is a very effective and cost-efficient medium to reach customers anywhere in the world and at all times of the day. From marketing to after sales support, a website can help deliver information about your products and services to customers when they need it. It also allows your customers to get to know more about you and your company.
Because the costs of having an internet presence and advertising on the internet are so low. It makes it much easier for smaller businesses to compete with their larger competitors online.