In this era of the internet, it is highly improbable for any business to survive in the market without a quality solution. The rightly developed application can prove to be the ladder to top. A properly crafted solution helps in delivering amazing customer experience and boosting employees’ productivity while streamlining business operations.
“Every business is a software business,” said the father of quality in software and CMMI- Watts Humphrey.
So, what should companies do when they need a qualitative solution? Out-of-box ideas are usually the first step, but mostly they aren’t enough. A company needs adequate support for giving a real-face to that idea.
This is where a custom software development company comes into the scene. Today, in this article, we are going to list the key pointers to be considered before hiring a custom software development company.
But first thing first-
What is Custom Software Development?
The process of creating, designing, deploying, and maintaining software for a set of users or the whole organization is known as custom software development. In comparison to COTS (commercial off-the-shelf software), custom software development targets a narrow set of defined requirements. COTS aims for a broad set of requirements, allowing them to be packed and commercially distributed (or marketed). Sitebuilder.com and Microsoft Office are a few of the examples in this category. They meet the generic needs of website creation and organizational productivity.
On the other hand, custom software is designed for meeting specific requirements, such as-
- An online banking app for meeting the banking needs of a customer.
- A field service equipment maintenance program for a manufacturer.
Also called a tailor-made suit or bespoke software development, it is either carried out through outsourcing or by the in-house teams. A custom software development project would go through a similar stage of software development like requirements gathering, development, testing, deployment, and maintenance. It shall also apply the same set of methodologies like DevOps, Agile as any other development project.
Why Custom Software Development?
Custom software or tailor-made software is perfectly fit for meeting the company’s expectations. On the other hand, packaged software offers similar customizable features to the buyer. Therefore, the off-the-shelf software usually falls short when it comes to meet diverse organizational processes, goals, and requirements.
Benefits of investing in Custom Software Development
1. Personalized Solutions
One-size fits all solution doesn’t exist. Have you ever witnessed two companies having identical teams, processes, and tools? You must haven’t. Custom software development fits perfectly into an organization and meets all the requirements of the workforce.
2. Optimal Integration
A company that is growing usually ends up working with multiple tools, which makes the process of licensing challenging and keeps crucial data stable. A custom-made software permits the integration of various processes into a centralized place. It consolidates all the relevant data for gaining insights.
3. Better Scalability
An off-the-shelf solution may work for you now, but what about tomorrow? As your organization grows, its core operation will inevitably change. By sticking with a packaged software development methodology, you may risk ending up with the tools that stop the scalability of your business. A custom solution will provide continuous maintenance services and support the growth of your business.
4. Support & Maintenance
The primary benefit of custom software is that you receive more than the development. It is because the team that is responsible for building your software shall provide continuous support and maintenance. Reliable technical support will offer great value to your company.
5. Excellent ROI
Undoubtedly, the cost of developing custom software is quite high, but it’s worth it in the long run. There won’t be any requirement to spend time and effort on expanding a packaged solution for accommodating your varying needs. Also, off-the-shelf solutions include extra costs, for example, licensing.
How to Select your Custom Software Development Company?
Consider the following pointers before selecting a Custom Software Development Company:
1. First, know your requirements!
Before you start looking for a company, it is essential to understand your business requirements. Take note of your mission, expectations, and vision. While doing so, it is crucial to include market preferences by performing intense research on the competitors’ online presence. This would give you a crystal clear image of what all should be your requirements. This way, you would better be able to convey your requirements effectively. Also, this would help you to understand whether the company you wish to hire is ready to meet your expectations or not.
2. Have you Taken Geography into Account?
Outsourcing software development is an attractive way to hire people from other sides of the planet to avail cheaper services. But when the matter is software development, cheap is not always profitable. This is just one potential issue that may arise when a company is located in a remote location. Other problems may have an impact like customs, culture, and language. Let’s address them one by one-
- Communication: No collaboration is possible without communication. Communication may be a significant issue, especially the team you’re interacting with doesn’t speak the common tongue fluently. Software development is a complicated process, and the lack of communication may create hurdles at every step, be it requirements gathering or providing feedback.
- Solution– Choose a company that has previously worked with companies from your region and speaks your tongue. This way, the language will never be a barrier.
- Culture: Culture is the maker and breaker of the situation. There is a reason why Eastern Europe is famous in most outsourcing destinations. The region, in addition to offering top programming expertise, also provides a professional culture very similar to western culture.
- Solution– Consider partnering with a development team that shares some shades of your culture and has experience in collaborating with the companies of your region.
3. You didn’t forget to check their Technical Skills, Did you?
Technical skills are the core of a technical project. They are like bread to your cheese sandwich. If a development company is restricted to only one technology, then it may not be a suitable option for your organization. A custom software addresses various aspects of the business; hence you got to hire a development partner who can wear multiple hats. Your potential hirer must be well-versed in security controls, UI/UX, social media integration, development approach, and much more. Since the IT world is continually expanding its roots, it makes sense to have a development partner equipped with a diverse skill set.
Evaluate the company’s adaptation culture. Ask for some coding samples, check out their portfolio for a better understanding.
4. Don’t, I repeat do not ignore the Legalities!
Amongst the strategic and technical undertakings, don’t overlook the legal aspect of custom software development methodology. The company you’re hiring will surely have access to your business strategy, trade access, and intellectual properties. Hence, it is crucial to carry out an extensive background for finding out their integrity and reliability. The best solution would be partnering with an experienced firm as they must have stood the test of time and credibility. Know the legal implications of the host country when you’re considering outsourcing and then make the final call.
5. Consider figuring out an Standard Operating Procedure
No matter how small or big your custom software development project is, consider drawing an SOP for obtaining mutual consent with your hired partner. The SOP must comprise of the post-development technical support in addition to the agreed terms and conditions decided at the development phase. An SOP would develop mutual coordination and understanding amongst the members of the development company and your organization. This will keep everyone on the same page.
6. Are you Scrutinizing the Financial Aspects?
Though it may look insignificant in the beginning, having the clarity of cost adds up to your advantage. It helps in the effective planning of financials without creating any temporary glitches. It doesn’t match with your budget; then, it is recommended to explore other options.
Also, at times a pricey thing may be extremely qualitative too. So, balance all the factors before deciding the company. Negotiate the terms and conditions of payments in advance. It will avoid any discrepancies later in the development.
7. Now this is of Uttermost Importance- Security
Your software application has sensitive information like proprietary business data or classified information. And usually, there is a huge risk involved when a solution doesn’t work appropriately. Choose a company that is insured to work on high-security solutions. This way, they would know how to implement the essential steps for protecting personal and proprietary data.
Leverage these seven tips before selecting the right custom software development company as it can prove to be highly beneficial for your business. It would enable building a robust online presence and attracting masses for potential business. Looking for a custom software development company that takes all the pointers as mentioned above into consideration?
Matellio is the place for you. Our twenty-year-old software engineering studio caters to all your development needs with the help of a powerful team. Our team consists of business analysts, designers, developers, QA experts, and marketers for offering cutting-edge solutions.
Got some queries? Shoot down in the comment box below.
Till then, Happy Exploring!