So you have a new software project in mind – but will you build or buy? FLOvate weighs up the pros and cons – and puts forward another perspective that delivers best of both worlds.
Build Or Buy Software: The Case To BUY
Easy set up and install: Most off the shelf packages can be installed without the need to call in external help. As a result, they’re less of a drain on resources.
Process definition: Standard processes are included out of the box, so you get up and running quickly.
Value for money: A crowded marketplace allows off the shelf packages to compete on price.
Support: Expect good levels of support from both the vendor and its user community, depending on vendor heritage.
Generic product: Embedded processes may allow you to get up and running quickly. However, they do not reflect the unique way that you do business and so you may lose competitive edge.
Limited scope: Inability to work outside the confines of the system will cause employees to create their own workarounds, leading to loss of visibility, duplication of work and poor communication. Worse still, they may fail to engage with the system altogether.
Costly to change: Attempts to widen the scope will require bespoke software development. This negates the cost benefits of buying off the shelf in the first place.
Build Or Buy Software: The Case To BUILD
Customisable UI: You can create the system to meet your processes, not the other way around.
Collaborative: Bespoke builds are often created in the same environment in which they are deployed. Done correctly, the end product should be closely aligned with the business needs.
Expensive: A bespoke build is costly; whether in time, resources or both. Can you afford to dedicate the development time to the project? Does that individual or team have the skills and knowledge to scope the project properly?
High risk: What if that developer leaves the business, taking all their knowledge with them? Can you ensure that every aspect of the project and resulting software is properly documented in such a way that any process owner could pick it up?
Hard to change: Related to the above. Proprietary systems have a smaller knowledge base to call on when development is required. This knowledge pool shrinks proportionally to the time the software was deployed.
High TCO: Bespoke builds are often all or nothing – there is no option to run with a proof of concept. This requires high capex upfront not to mention the ongoing maintenance costs required to back up the software for example.
Build Or Buy Software: The Case For LOW CODE
Increasingly, organisations are turning to low-code platforms to solve the build or buy software debate. LEAP Low Code Software offers all the strengths of the build or buy debate, but none of the weaknesses. For example:
Easy to set up: LEAP guides users through the set-up process, with in-built wizards to make it simple. The level or skill/effort required to set up the platform is on a parallel with an off-the-shelf solution.
Fast to deploy: LEAP’s modular approach allows you to build 99% of your processes without going down the code route. As a result, you get up and running quickly.
Easy to change: Importantly, LEAP allows developers to insert snippets of code where needed. This allows you to achieve virtually any process or outcome, but without the high development costs.
Low risk: Business can start small and scale fast, testing one or two processes before making wholesale digital changes
Custom look & feel: The LEAP low-code solution can talk to existing legacy systems and newer digital initiatives, allowing you to embed elements of the process seamlessly e.g. into an app or portal.