Custom Software Development at an Affordable Price: 8 Ways to Save BIG
- Published: Friday, 15 May 2015 12:51
Custom software development is an attractive option for many organizations. Not only does it offer a more innovative approach—the solutions can create a solid competitive advantage when put up against off-the-shelf products. However, having custom software developed can come with a pretty hefty price tag if you don’t map out a plan.
Helping point you in the right direction, we've highlighted eight strategies below that have helped clients reduce their costs without sacrificing the end product. Follow these tips and you’ll be on your way to getting the software you've always dreamed of without breaking the bank.
1. Vendor Location
Outsourcing has become a standard business tool in many organizations, morphing into a multi-billion dollar business. Embracing offshore development as a cost-effective way to close gaps within their own organizations, businesses are saving up to 50%. That’s a huge reduction in cost for purchasing the same services from a different geographic region.
2. Define Clear Requirements
Although software developers have opportunities to ask questions when responding to RFPs, it’s hard to estimate every little thing. In order to account for the unknown, vendors can increase project pricing by up to 30% if they don’t have a clear picture of the task at hand. By being clear with your wants/needs from the start, you’ll help take the guesswork out of things, saving you and the vendor time and money.
3. Determine Methodology
The processes used for project management might not top your list of priorities—however it can have a huge impact on the outcome of your project. Very traditional development methods are famous for unnecessary work, while more contemporary methods such as Agile, take steps to prevent excesses from happening.
Custom Alternatives (customizing a boxed solution)
If a fully-customized approach isn’t in the cards—a less expensive method is modular development. Taking an off-the-shelf product and combining it with proven components and seamless interfaces can result in a distinctive, yet powerful solution.
5. Give Open-Source a Chance
Although it’s fairly common for solutions to be subject to commercial licensing fees, it can drive up development costs as well as the total cost of ownership (TCO). Using open source technologies, which are usually free, you can leverage extremely robust products that meet or exceed the equivalent commercial products.
6. Usability before Design
Design remains one of the top priorities of successful software and should remain that way in almost every situation. But if saving money is a concern, design flexibility can translate into notable savings. Working with your developer, focus on usability instead of getting caught up in the perfect shade of blue.
7. Prioritize Features
Building a custom solution is exciting. Starting from the ground up, it’s easy to get carried away with all of the bells and whistles. Wanting it all comes with a price tag—and if your budget doesn’t stretch that far, listing your needs vs. wants can help bring the price down.
8. Plan Ahead (what needs will you have down the road?)
Although it’s hard to predict the future, make sure your software is flexible enough to address changes and growth within your organization. If you’re able to anticipate needs down the road, your developer will have an easier time making changes when the time comes.
Following the above strategies—custom software development can be within your reach—and your budget.