Custom Verses Off The Shelf
As unique as you, or as unique as everyone else
We have the ability to design and build almost any system you need, from a CRM system, an ERP system, Asset tracking, Sales Management and Quotation Systems or a full Business Information Management System. Whatever the system is, it will exactly match your business needs and support your processes as they are today and as your business grows and changes, the system can do the same, saving you time and money.
Why a custom software system – why not an off the shelf system?
At first glance, it can appear that an off the shelf system can meet your needs at a lower price than a custom-built system, but when you look closer it is not always the case.
- the initial cost might be lower but in most cases there is a need to have some level of ‘customisation’, which will often cost more than the initial license fee.
- the off the shelf systems are often rigid in their application and as such, they are unable to adapt to your needs, forcing you to change your business practices.
- the ongoing license costs over a few years can be greater than building a custom-developed system.
- they cannot always adapt and change as your business grows so they are often obsolete after a few years whilst a custom system can grow and adapt to changes as your business grows.
- Business growth and creativity is often constrained by the use of these systems as your opportunities are restricted by the capabilities of the system to connect to other systems. Say you had a on line sales channel and wanted to connect to a new courier service. With a bespoke solution, you can make the change almost overnight, not so when you rely on a ‘standard’ system to make the changes. Indeed their developers may decide they have no desire to make the change.
- Off the shelf systems are built using one development language which will need specific approach, and often has a predetermined user interface style. Bespoke solutions can be built using a combination of many different development languages and web technologies so that better more flexible and user friendly interfaces can be created.
- As new technologies arise, they can easily be integrated with the bespoke system. As an example, more businesses are now using social media as sales channels and want user interfaces to look like mobile app screens with icons etc.. Bespoke systems can be built or adapted to achieve this easily, not so off the shelf systems.
- Often, particularly at the Enterprise level, new systems require a Proof of concept before any major commitment, both time and resources, are committed to the development. Bespoke systems can start small and grow as they are rolled out, there is no need for a major upfront commitment to a license based model, meaning the risk of developing a new system is kept to a minimum.
Sometimes only a solution built on demand will suffice.
Whilst a bespoke system may take a little longer to plan and implement, because it is built around your business and matches every part of it perfectly, it will quickly demonstrate significant benefits and improvements to your operations. Our clients often talk about being unable to find off the shelf solutions which meet their exact needs and that they would have to change their processes or lose flexibility to address client needs if they used the ‘standard’ systems.
Additionally, many of our clients have tried ‘standard’ systems and found that while they may solve one business problem, several systems are required to meet all the demands of the business. This means multiple different teams to look after the systems, multiple service arrangements with different suppliers, and often confusion and finger pointing when it comes to problem solving. On top of this problems can occur when one supplier makes a change to their system which has a negative impact on the other systems you’re using. A bespoke system can provide a complete solution which removes all of these issues.
In the real world, most of our clients already have some of the systems and processes in place and the new element is to be added to address a discrete need. This is a great way to begin with a bespoke solution as it can easily be developed to interface with the existing systems and at the correct time its functionality can be built out to include other aspects of the legacy systems. Not only does this improves performance and usability, it also reduces support costs and complexity.
Every business is unique and has unique challenges, competitive benefits and every client has specific needs. Why accept a generic system solution which doesn’t address all these and constrains your business when a bespoke system can match them all?
At Compass Data, we believe in creating bespoke software and web portals that address real business issues, fix problems and offer tangible benefits on a day to day basis. Our clients should see almost unmediated benefits fro the new system in terms of usability, business improvement and reduced operational times, whether is sales inputting data or manufacturing ordering parts.
Our design ethos is:
- We are committed to the quality of our work and the solutions we provide to our clients.
- We firmly believe in building strong mutual partnerships with our clients over the long term and work actively with them to achieve their goals.
- By understanding these goals and working closely with our clients at every stage, (especially the planning stage), our developers ensure that these goals are met.