There are some major advantages to designing the software for your company, instead of purchasing it. Tom Merritt lists five reasons why you should build your own software versus buying it.
Software: you need it. You can't achieve your business's goals without it. There's a salesperson offering to solve all your problems if you just plunk down a chunk of change, but you have coders on staff. You have project managers, so you could just make that software yourself. That seems more attractive. Should you do it? Here are five reasons to build, not buy, software.
- Control. You decide what the software does and doesn't do. Nobody can take it away because a license is no longer offered. You might even make some money marketing it to others who don't want to build.
- Cost. You don't waste money paying for features you'll never use. Because you're designing the software, you can laser focus on just what you need. Plus, once it's built, it's built—you don't have to keep paying a subscription fee.
- Specificity. When you build the software, it does exactly what you need. If you have a business with unique requirements, it may be difficult to find an off-the-shelf product that does what you want. Building could give you a competitive advantage over other businesses who bought their software.
- Adaptability. Need a new feature? Your employee's feedback can be routed right into the ongoing development. You won't have to wait to see if enough "other customers" justify it being added.
- It works with your system. Since you're building it, you can make sure it integrates with what you have. This may save time and money over trying to integrate an off-the-shelf product.
If you prioritize control and customization, or have a unique problem to solve, building may be right for you, but don't take just this list's word for it.
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