Nobody needs to be told what software is. Almost everyone today uses software for various purposes. Anyone with a mobile phone is certainly using many software packages. Software helps us to do things faster and easier. What would take you many hours if done manually can be completed within a few minutes using software. This is the reason why companies are using them more and more to completes tasks very quickly. Software packages are available for various functions that an organization will have to perform.
You can get software installed in your computers within a few minutes. But those are readymade software packages that are meant for use generally by a large number of people for similar purposes. On the other hand, you have custom software that is specifically developed to suit all the requirements of a company or a specific group of people in a company.
Off-the-shelf software is made with the intention of satisfying the needs of a wide group of people for completing a task. This doesn’t meet the specific needs of any particular group of people or organizations. These packages satisfy a broad set of requirements and are made ready to be marketed and installed. There are various packages that help you perform various tasks. You can get different software packages for preparing documents, hearing music or converting files. These are all general packages that aim at satisfying a wide set of people.
Custom software development is a process of creating a software that satisfies a narrow set of requirements by a particular organization or a department inside the organization. Such software will be designed and created after understanding the needs of that company. It is not meant for use by the general public. Such software packages will include all the unique needs of the organization which a readymade software will not address. Custom software takes more time to develop and is costlier than readymade software, but can give a lot of other advantages that the companies will find very beneficial.
The development of custom software is either done by the organization if it has the people or handed over to a software development company. The process is similar to the development of readymade software. The developing team finds out the requirements of the company for which it is developing the software. While readymade software focuses on a larger group, custom software development will focus on the requirements of only the company for which it is developed. Such software will also aim to satisfy specific requirements that may not occur in other companies.
During custom software development efforts are made to customize the readymade software to include individual requirements. Customization is also done in the way the software is handled to make it easy for the people in the organization to use it easily. Another step is the inclusion of provisions for future needs. The developers understand the future needs of the company and include this in the software. The software development company also supports the organization in installation of the software, training of the company employees to use the software and correcting mistakes that may be found while the software is in use.
So, why should a company spend money and efforts in getting software development done instead of just buying a software that is readily available. Getting custom software developed is easier and cheaper than buying an available software and trying to alter it match your requirements. The time and money spent in it can be better used to create a software that will take care of all the company’s needs and also give various other benefits. Custom software promotes efficiency in a better way by including all the specific needs of the company.
All businesses grow and their needs will also grow. Off-the-shelf software doesn’t take into consideration this factor. Scalability is a concern with readymade software while it is easy with custom software. You can get the software built in a way to include the predicted future requirements. There is no need for further purchase of upgrades or licenses. Companies can continue to use the software for many years without incurring any additional costs.
When you get the package developed by software development companies you can limit the number of features to those that you necessarily need. When you buy readymade software, you must pay for features that you may never use. You can build customer software within your budget with the most needed features. You may also be able to include specific features that only your company may need. This cannot be achieved with readymade software.
Most companies are using software already even when they are creating custom software. If you buy readymade software it may not be possible to integrate it with the existing software. Integrating software packages for different functions is very much essential for improve efficiency. When you create custom software, you can easily make it in such a way that it can be integrated with other packages that you are already using.
Custom software offers better security. Readymade software is available for anyone to purchase. This can help hackers to find the vulnerabilities in such packages. They can easily use the weaknesses to penetrate the software and use if for wrong purposes. Stealing money and data has become very rampant and this warrants better security features. This can be had with custom software as you can decide the level of security and include that. This means that you don’t have to worry about your data being stolen or misused.
Any new introduction will usually be met with some resistance by the employees. This is true with software too. It is essential to make them feel at ease when introducing a new package. With readymade software your employees may be forced to change the way they use the interface. But when you create custom software you can make it in such a way that the interface is easy for your employees to use. You can create it in the way in which they are used to handling the software.
When you create a custom software, you are the owner of that package. This will depend on the agreement you draft with the software development company. If you are the owner of the software you can sell or license the software to other people. A company with many distribution channels may charge their distributors to use the software. They can also allow their clients to use the software and charge for such usage.
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