Debunking 20 myths about Custom Software Development

Debunking 20 myths about Custom Software Development


Published on: 31 Aug 2016

By Vinod Subbaiah

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Custom Software Development is an excellent solution to effectively manage the day-to-day activities of a business. The commercial off-the-shelf software cannot cater to the varying requirements of different businesses. So companies often opt to get a customized software, developed exclusively for their business. While some tend to set up an in-house development environment, some choose to outsource the software. However, due to some misconceptions, many businesses refrain themselves from investing in a custom application and end up buying a commercial software. We take this opportunity to deflate some such myths about custom software development, establishing its importance for enterprises.

Myth #1. It comes with a high price tag

Many people believe that building custom software solutions means you’ll have to invest an astronomical sum of money. However, if you delve deeper into its nitty-gritty, you’ll find that custom software development is quite cost-competitive with the commercial alternatives and provides a long term solution. Custom software saves costs on various fronts, such as individual license acquisition and software up-gradation, which are incurred in case of off-the-shelf products.

Myth #2. It is a good practice to use off-the-shelf software

Almost everyone seems to follow prevalent industry trends, at times blindly. As more and more businesses are acquiring commercial software, people have mistaken it to be a good practice that helps manage business processes better. However, contrary to this belief, businesses can do much better with a well strategized and structured custom software.

Myth #3. No bugs should be encountered in a custom software

This is a strange yet common misconception of webmasters that a custom software cannot have bugs. They fail to understand that an off-the-shelf software is also developed in a similar way as a custom application and thus can have glitches. Besides, a bug does not make the entire software useless and can always be fixed. So this isn’t a good enough reason to overlook the several benefits of custom software development

Myth #4. User-specific error is software error

In larger business set ups, it is often seen that users face difficulties with custom applications, which is a result of improper training or lack of know-how of the application. However, more often than not, software is believed to be at fault.

Myth #5. To know ‘how it works’ is sufficient

At times, after hiring developers for a project, business strategists tend to ignore the development process and implementation details. They get themselves trained on the working mechanism of the software that they believe is sufficient for them. But at a later stage, this lack of information poses as a barrier for effective resolution of issues.

Myth #6. Giving additional inputs regularly makes development easy

Changing the current requirements and adding new ones is commonplace in custom software development. Strategists think that providing continuous inputs will ease the process for developers but in fact, it messes up the smooth progress and the end result is far from satisfactory.

Myth #7. More developers ensure faster completion of the project

“Too many cooks spoil the broth”, this saying holds a true case of custom apps. Clients often employ more developers in order to get quick output. But this does not always guarantee faster completion. A proper analysis of requirements and well-planned strategy helps in completing the software in the desired time frame.

Myth #8. Outsourcing firms are not serious about projects

Businesses feel that outsourcing custom software development isn’t wise. It does not ensure quality as the outsourcing firm may not realize their goals as well as they do. However, in reality, most custom software development companies are very careful and dedicated in handling such projects.

Myth #9. Functionalities can be compromised for better looks

Just to make the UI and layout of the software look attractive, people often compromise on the better functionality of the product. It is important to keep in mind that it is the functionality of the software that will matter in the longer run, and keep users hooked.

Myth #10. All business issues must be resolved by custom software

Consultancies develop custom software according to the requirements businesses provide them. Expecting a tool to resolve your business problems that were not a part of the submitted requirements is mere foolishness.

Myth #11. Consultants suggest making their own work easy

When you hire a popular and successful IT consultancy, you should have faith in the professional expertise of their resources. They might have suggestions that will ensure better results.

Myth #12. Custom Software is useful for only niche companies

There is no rule that custom software works only for companies in the niche market. Whether you are a startup or an enterprise, custom software is tailored for your business and work to address your business-specific issues.

Myth #13. You don’t get enough technical support for custom software

Many businesses often fear that they might not get any technical support from the developers once the software is developed and delivered to them. But you can sign a contract after clearly discussing the development consultancy’s post-release support policies.

Myth #14. Custom software is not well maintained

This is a very common myth that a custom software wears out rather quickly as IT companies do not provide any maintenance for it. This isn’t true. Custom software is similar to commercial products in every aspect. Software developers provide exhaustive maintenance plan to ensure the longevity of the product.

Myth #15. Custom software does not fulfill all business requirements

This is yet another strange misconception that runs in the market. People should understand this basic virtue of custom applications that they are designed specifically to suit a company’s requirements and it means all requirements.

Myth #16. Commercial software has the best architecture

The architecture of the back-end application is finalized after proper analysis and research by both the developer and the beneficiary. Commercial software features an architecture that is designed to best suit all the intended user groups. However, in custom application development, you can set the architecture that perfectly fits your exclusive requirements.

Myth #17. More users of commercial software mean less risk

While many businesses invest in popular commercial software, others tend to follow the same pattern to avoid any risk. They believe that when so many companies are using the same product, nothing can go wrong.

Myth #18. Custom Software development takes a lot of time

Development projects do take time depending upon the requirement and the planning. If a proper plan is put on the table and all the required resources are available, even a complex project can be completed within stipulated time.

Myth #19. Custom software involves more risk

When you are going off beat to get a custom software there is some amount of risk involved. But that is worth all your investments as it is going to save a lot in terms of efforts and costs in the long run.

Myth #20. Developing software via third party software is easy

To save some bucks, people often acquire less expensive third party applications like Dreamweaver, Photoshop etc. to develop products that meet their requirements. However, the costs incurred are somewhat the same and the product that is designed with standard scripting languages and technologies is also more reliable and durable.

Conclusion

The advantages of having a software that is tailored only as per your requirements are manifold. Troubleshooting, data analysis, and maintenance become easier and faster with a custom software. Though there are hardly any significant drawbacks of it, you must be careful while choosing consultancy firm for your development project.

Vinod Subbaiah Vinod Subbaiah