Custom software development refers to the designing and development of software applications for a particular user or group of users within an institution or organization. Such software product is developed and designed to address their needs precisely as compared widespread off-the-shelf software. Such software product is mostly developed just for that specific customer by a software company by a freelancer or in-house group of developers and is not packaged for reselling.
Custom software vs. off the shelf
Off-the-shelf is a packaged application available to large users or customers with varying similar needs. For example, Microsoft Office products are designed for the mass public as a diverse solution to the many different needs of its users. It does correspond to any specific entity like custom software would.
Custom development includes the requirements gathering, design and development and handing over of a product tailored to a single specific entity. For example, an application created by Marksols would only be used by that company and the department for which it was designed. The software is developed keeping the company’s working area, infrastructure, branding and implementation needs in mind, implying it can only work for that particular organization.
The pros of custom software development
The main benefit of custom development is a simple fact it provides features off-the-shelf software doesn’t. Designing an application with your organization’s needs in consideration implies an increased level of productivity.
If you have a software application designed to increase productivity or address an internal need, the cost of it is offset by the promise of increased efficiency. If your organization has a need unique enough to warrant for custom software, then customizing a solution rather than settling for an off-the-shelf application becomes a smart course of action.
The cons of custom software development
Whereas you can purchase an off-the-shelf software application for dollars, customized software requires significantly more resources to design and thus comes with an inherently high amount of costs and risks. When a company decides to begin custom software development services company to automate its work, it has to cover all costs associated with the development process. At the end, the cost of a project alone can reach to the five-figure range. Off-the-shelf software can be sold on low price hence low budget can be maintained because the cost is being distributed among many different users, whereas custom software is created for one user or company.
The risks associated with custom software development vary in accordance with the user for whom the custom software is developed for. The company must have an in-depth and strong understanding of their needs and how they want the end product to fulfill that need. Identifying new needs during the development process isn’t uncommon, though it results in added costs as more development time and effort is required. The risk of frequent changes such as these can result in a loss of project scope and can result in an end product different or insufficient to the original needs.