Custom Application Development

Jan 30 2009   10:55PM GMT

Factors Against a Custom Application

SJC SJC Profile: SJC

My previous post pointed out a few of the reasons why one might choose to create a custom application.  For this post I’d like to further the discussion to review some of the reasons (valid and otherwise) for NOT creating a custom application.  I would include in this category:

  • FEAR – Many a story has been told about the “dream” development project that became a nightmare – obviously what there is to do here is to carefully select developer(s)
  • It will be “Too Costly” – It doesn’t have to be in most cases
  • Standards” won’t allow it
  • Too big of a commitment
  • No “New” requirements are on the horizon
  • Suitable “Off-the-shelf” software for your industry is available and within your budget range
  • Your operation is running efficiently, programs being used suit your needs
  • Users are getting what they need from the existing system
  • Existing system is technically “up-to-date”

 Certainly if the last four points above hold true for your operation one would be hard-pressed to create a valid case for a custom program – you just don’t need it!  As for the standards issue there’s not much I can say about it.  I have seen companies that have struggled with exceptionally ineffective and inefficient software – only because a proposed app won’t “fit” the “Standard” – I have to seriously wonder about this decision.  In some instances it seems to be that the “Fear” or “Too costly” or “fear of commitment” arguments come into place.

Next Post — “Identifying Potentially Valuable Custom Applications”

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