We are all familiar with Microsoft Office, a family of office applications we use daily. These are called Packaged software, and they are everywhere. Yet, despite just purchasing and putting it in use instantly for your team, many businesses choose a different and more complex path: customize one themselves. Thus, which is better for digital transformation: Packaged software or Custom software? For performance, ROI, and cost-effectiveness?
Read on with Synodus on this article, where we learn about the best use cases for custom development and packaged software.
|1. Packaged software is a bundle of Commercial Software that you can purchase for the same functions, better integration, and less expensive. |
2. Custom software is building an application from scratch. You can assemble an in-house team or work with a development agency like Synodus.
3. Packaged software is more beneficial if you have a limited budget, and the said software can solve 80 to 90% of your problems.
4. Custom software is better if you have resourceful investment and seek a solution that best fits your unique requirements that most commercial software can’t solve.
- What Is Packaged Software?
- Pros And Cons Of Using Packaged Software
- What Is Custom Software Development?
- Pros And Cons Of Using Customized Software
- What’s The Difference Between Packaged Software And Custom Software?
- Making the Final Call: Packaged Software vs Custom Software
- Synodus – Custom Software Development Services
- Wrapping Up
What Is Packaged Software?
Packaged software is a bundle of commercial applications made by the same solution provider, available to the broader public, and offered at a set price. Despite having different functions, these applications can seamlessly work together, creating a comprehensive workplace system for a company or individual use.
Microsoft Office is the most well-known example of package software for workplace management with many choices of tools, such as Office for documentation and presentation, SharePoint and OneDrive for database management, and Power Platform for creating applications and data analytics.
Another example is the powerful Salesforce for cloud-based systems such as CRM, Sales and Marketing applications, Tableau for data analytics, and many others.
Pros And Cons Of Using Packaged Software
Even though you can buy these tools separately (called off-the-shelf software), providers still offer packages with lower prices, urging you to acquire multiple apps at the same time. Other than price, there are many reasons why package software is beneficial for business, such as:
What Is Custom Software Development?
Custom software (aka Bespoke software) is produced specifically for your company’s requirements, aligning the tech solution with the business model, internal process, and culture. It could be a whole new application or an enhancement to an existing one as long as it is tailored to your operations. Custom development can be done by your own IT or development teams, or an outsourced company/ agency or freelance software developer can do it.
Instead of just buying and installing, the process of custom-made software is much more complicated, ranging from planning the project scope, designing your UX/UI from page to page, developing your back end and front-end, testing every function to deploying it across departments. Because of that, the process can take anywhere from a few months to even years, costing you a few hundred to millions.
|Unilever Factory in Vietnam worked with us for a few months to build a Production Planning Optimization and Auto Weighing System using machine learning and AI. With such complex requirements, Unilever opted for custom software, ensuring the application is crafted to best fit their manufacturing model. |
The so-called software has helped their team significantly save time and budget by reducing changeover by 10% and product planning by 80% per week.
Pros And Cons Of Using Customized Software
Bespoke software might seem risky and not worthwhile at first, yet many businesses still opt for this digital transformation strategy. Why is that? Let’s analyze both the pros and cons of custom software so you can decide.
What’s The Difference Between Packaged Software And Custom Software?
Learning the pros and cons isn’t enough, we will compare packaged software vs customized software side-by-side to help you make better choices.
|Packaged Software||Custom Software|
|Definition||A collection of applications gathered to deliver diverse tools from the same publisher to the public.||A specific and advanced program designed for an individual or a business goal.|
|Availability||Available in the market with a set price||Exclusive and not in the public|
|Working Process||1. Set out your requirement |
2. Create a list of vendors
3. Evaluate vendors and products (asking for demo, try free trial, read reviews)
5. Install and training
|1. Set out your project scope and requirement |
2. Choose your tech stack and features
3. Find vendors via listings website (Clutch, Goodfirms), Google and Linkedin.
4. Evaluate vendors and choose the best suited one
5. Close the deal
6. Development process (design, development & testing)
7. Deployment and training
8. Management, upgrade
|Development & deployment speed||Instantly||At least a few months to even years.|
|Installation||By third-party consultants.||By in-house team or vendor’s team|
|Implementation||Rare occasion when you need additional customization, you will need development team.||Always involves the design and development team|
|Performance||Pay per features and pay per user. |
Lack of customization causes you to not use certain features and not have wanted features.
|Alter the applications to your needs.|
|Interface/ Design||Friendly so that a wide range of users at different level can use||You design your interface. You can either make it generic or add your brand guidelines.|
|Integration||May face some difficulties||Easier to integrate with other software|
|Modification||You cannot adjust by yourself||Freely|
|Integration||Limited. Only works if supported. Mostly depend on the vendor.||Freely|
|Upgrades||Depends on the supplier||You decide|
|Security||Needs more protection.||More secure and reliable.|
|Where the data is saved||In-house if the vendor supports on-premises solutions. Otherwise, a third-party cloud storage.||Under your control and management|
|Biggest risks||Vendor lock-in and security concerns||The application not working effectively as expected after lengthy development|
|Support||More support options from the vendor.||Require support from the development team|
|Pricing||Less expensive at first but can add up in the long run.||Big investment at first but can ease down in the long run.|
|Also read: |
1. SaaS Vs Custom Software Development: Harnessing The Right Power
2. Decoding The Contrast Between Custom Software vs Off-the-shelf
Making the Final Call: Packaged Software vs Custom Software
When to use custom software?
- Have the resources upfront to support custom development.
- Are approaching a period of rapid expansion and require software that can keep up.
- Work in a specialized field that necessitates bespoke functionality, which packaged software can’t offer.
- Seeking digital transformation by repairing broken business processes.
- Long-term performance, scalability and high security are your main goals.
And when custom software is not the best fit:
- You currently have limited resources.
- You need software to use and solve your critical problems fast.
- If most packaged software in the market can solve 90% of your problems, to be honest, you don’t need to invest in custom solutions.
When to pick packaged software
- You have a restricted upfront budget and require a low-cost or free choice to get started.
- You need your software to be up and running quickly.
- The packaged software is enough to solve your problems.
- Vendor reliance is not a big issue for your current problems (meaning it’s acceptable to wait for their update, wait to be able to scale and save your data in their system)
And skip the packaged software if:
- It can’t solve your unique challenges and specialized requirements.
- You want everything to be in-house and under your management: your data, your applications.
Synodus – Custom Software Development Services
To develop an application, you can either build an in-house team or work with an outsourced software development partner like Synodus.
Leveraging an extensive tech stack, ranging from front-end, back-end to high-performance databases, we have helped businesses across industries to build robust on-premises and cloud-based applications.
Being your strategic partner is our motto. This is proven by 88% of our clients recommending us or giving positive reviews, as the seamless collaboration with Synodus has brought the best-recorded results.
Transparent communication, no fog-of-tech development and thoughtful deployment, all in one for the best suited, reliable and effective custom software. View our portfolio & Learn what our team is capaple of!
|Did you know that there’s a packaged solution that provides development tools so you can utilize existing functions and still customize your application? |
These are Low Code, most famously Microsoft Power Platform (Power Apps, Power Pages, PowerBI, and Power Automate). Want to learn more about the solutions? As a qualified partner of Microsoft in low code development, we’re just one chat away!
There’s no certainty that one solution will outweigh the other. To best distinguish between packaged software vs custom software, you should identify your use case, resources, and requirements. Making decisions can be harsh, so keep an open mind or consider a hybrid strategy that matches every stage of your business growth.
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More related posts from Software Development blog you shouldn’t skip:
- In-house vs Outsourcing Software Development: Best Guide For 2024
- 10 Real-life Successful Examples Of Custom Software Development
- Calculate Your Custom Software Development Costs: How To & Tips
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