What Is Custom Software Development? Top 5 Reasons Why Your Organization Needs It!
If you’ve reached here searching for ‘what is custom software development, you are perhaps confused about choosing between building software for your organization or off-the-shelf software. Let me start with a simple question.
Are you comfortable using things that aren’t made for you or meant for you? If not, custom software development is going to be your pick.
After reading this blog, you will be crystal clear about what is custom software development, how it is different from commercial off-the-shelf software (COTS), and why you should invest in custom software development to reap competitive business advantages.
What is custom software development?
The word meaning of ‘custom’ is ‘made or done to order or custom-made’.
To be more specific, Cambridge Dictionary defines it beautifully as, "specially designed for a particular person or purpose".
Does this feeling of getting something explicitly to meet your needs sound lovely? It’s like that for all mortals and that’s the most sensible emotion to have!
Now, let’s come back to custom software development.
It is the process of building customized software or bespoke software. It is nothing but a digital solution/software application developed specially to suit a particular business to satisfy its unique business-needs. Custom software is also known as tailor-made software.
Think about tailor-made suits. It’s always sensible to get your suits tailor-made. Going to a tailor helps you get the perfect-fitting suit. You need not fit in the size that is already available. And as long as expert tailors are there to solve your problem, why go after suits that are not tailor made for you?
Same way as this, when an organization/a set of customers are unable to address their problems with off-the-shelf software, it is wise to hire experienced software developers to get custom software.
Major highlights of custom software development
- Custom software development is the making of unique technology solutions. These software applications are for a specific user or group of users who propose to perform a certain function.
- These solutions are made by a third-party or in-house group of developers just for these specific users. These solutions will not be available for resale.
- Custom software solutions are more expensive than out-of-the-box solutions.
- Custom software development requires a comprehensive plan after studying the specific needs of a set of users or organizations.
- Organizations demand these services increasingly for customization, modernization, and integration of their existing COTS applications to support their individual and market requirements.
- Custom software is designed with the end-user company’s infrastructure, branding, and implementation requests. Therefore it works only for that use.
Examples of bespoke software development can be kiosk applications for improved customer interaction, intelligent payment applications for banks, payment processing web applications, diverse ecommerce portals and applications to meet your specific customer demands, etc. Let’s see how it is different from off-the-shelf software.
Familiar examples of off-the-shelf software solutions are Microsoft office, Salesforce, HubSpot, Oracle, QuickBase, Zoho.
You will embark on making bespoke software if there are no off-the-shelf solutions available with the particular feature set that you are looking for. In other words, the needs that you are addressing are very peculiar to your own company.
Differences between custom software and off-the-shelf software
Why Should Your Organization Choose Custom Software Development?
From all these differences and descriptions, it’s now clear that custom software development is beneficial to your businesses. Meeting your unique requirements makes custom software a superior choice. Let’s see more ways in which it accelerates business growth and helps your organization to stay competitive.
1. Improved efficiency through unique solutions
Smart businesses are increasingly choosing custom software development as it is sharply tailored to meet their key business needs. Just as no two businesses are the same, the software solution they need is also different.
Developing unique and personalized software will offer all the features and functionalities that an organization needs, which is a surefire way to improve their efficiency and productivity. You can make your operations more manageable and swift without fiddling with any off-the-shelf applications.
2. Enhanced scalability
Your organization is not destined to be in the present stage always. Your business will grow or scale upwards overtime with subsequent changes in needs. Only a custom software solution can grow and adapt with your changing requirements. Software developers, while doing requirement gathering for your software solution, will gauge your future needs and will incorporate them in the application. This will help you accommodate future needs without incurring additional costs for purchasing additional licenses or subscriptions of readymade applications.
3. Seamless and cost-effective integration
If the off-the-shelf software does not work with your organization’s legacy applications, you will have to buy commercial software to communicate and operate with your existing infrastructure leading to additional costs. Whereas, custom software can be built to integrate with the existing and intended programs and infrastructure. It improves the scope of real-time conversation between diverse systems and departments.
4. A great lift in your competitive edge
Shifting from off-the-shelf to custom software solutions is the best way to have an edge over your competitors. Because, you will be able to solve problems better than your competitors as your solution fits your exact business needs.
Moreover, custom software development helps you discard outdated processes and move smartly to mobile and cloud. This certainly gives you a competitive edge.
You can even get the rights to your custom code or ownership of the intellectual property making those who don’t customize to suffer more. This serves as a way to increase your profitability if you sell it to other organizations.
5. Hassle-free support and maintenance
You might have got the best piece of software from the most efficient software developers. But you may face a bug or need for an update sometime. Getting efficient custom support assistance is crucial at this juncture. Off-the-shelf software usually comes with minimal or no support making your situation worse.
Software development companies with experience and reputation offer effective after-development support. They will solve any issues arising after deployment and will guarantee to maintain your software without any failures.
Well. You have crossed the stage of wondering ‘what is custom software development?’ You are convinced about getting a custom software solution for your business.
Now, you need to elucidate what problems you want to solve with a custom software. You need to have a clear understanding of your ambitions and the best return on your investment (RoI). Go ahead and explore software outsourcing possibilities. Discuss your ideas and needs with a reliable custom software development company.
Keep in mind that having a Fortune 500 company in their client case list is not the criteria to select your offshore vendor. While discussing your needs, a smart software outsourcing or offshoring vendor will help you realize the hidden potentials of your organization. They will also help you list out the pros and cons of developing your software. Take care to build the best agile development teams who help you have the best competitive advantage.