Off-The-Shelf Shoehorn?

If you are contemplating an investment in a software solution, one of the first decisions you need to make is whether to use a commercial package (off-the-shelf) or to commission a bespoke software solution, that is, a system that is custom designed to fit the specific needs of your business.

If you are considering a bespoke software solution, chances are your investigations into commercial software alternatives have led to one or more of these situations:

  • The software is too elaborate for your requirements. There are a lot of features you don't need and don't want to pay for.
  • The software has features you need, but doesn't work with other systems you've already got in place, resulting in "islands" of information in your business.
  • The software has some features you need, but is either not configurable enough, or is very expensive to configure to meet those needs.
  • The developer has plans to add some new features that you need right now but your business cannot influence the speed with which those new features are implemented.

These issues arise because the standard features of off-the-shelf software packages are designed to be useful for the greatest number of users and are developed to walk a fine line between features (breadth) and functionality (depth).

Commissioning bespoke software gives you a solution directly tailored to your needs in a way commercial packages can not.

The LayerX Difference

A bespoke software development relationship with LayerX will mean:

  • The functionality available in the solution arises from a thorough understanding of your business and your workflow requirements.
  • The user experience of the application is a result of direct consultation with your end users, lowering resistance to change.
  • You control the pace (and extent) of the development; upgrades do not depend on waiting for seemingly arbitrary release dates.
  • The feature-set includes only the functionality you need right now, and is designed to be expanded and enhanced as your business grows.
  • You do not have to change the way your business operates in order to accommodate the constraints of the software.

Additionally, when you are running a bespoke software solution:

  • Bespoke software comes with bespoke support - LayerX knows your system and how you use it and can respond to any questions quickly. If packaged software fails to perform, you could end up trawling inadequate FAQs or joining a queue for email or phone support.
  • No license fees - unless third party modules are included/licensed in the solution.
  • The solution will not become obsolete. When your requirements change, along with your business, you can commission additional functionality that works with your existing system.

And lastly, when an application is built to your requirements, you can often save time and money when it comes to teaching your staff how to use it. An application developed according to your own specification will fit more easily into your existing business processes and should be intuitive to all end-user staff.

A Bespoke Software Solution from LayerX can provide significant benefits to your business, and we'd be pleased to talk with you about how you can leverage our skills.

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