If you're looking to invest in some specific software for your organisation you might find yourself tossing up between bespoke software and packaged software.
Bespoke software is software which has been created specially, with your organisation's needs in mind.
Packaged software, on the other hand, is a one-size-fits-all affair.
It is sold off the shelf and designed to handle a number of requirements which a range of organisations might have.
So which is the right choice for you? Advantages of Packaged Software Of course, the biggest advantage of packaged software is the price.
Packaged software is low-cost and far more affordable for smaller organisations.
Meanwhile, the huge companies who develop packaged software have vast finances and resources which allow them to create highly sophisticated programmes that are tailor-made for their needs.
Disadvantages of Packaged Software There are, however, numerous downsides to using packaged, off-the-shelf software.
The one-size-fits-all design means that the programme has to work for everyone.
This means that it will be a very large piece of software which may have hundreds of functions which are, quite simply, of no use to you.
Not only is this wasteful, but it may also be unnecessarily complex for your needs and require training, or worse, the software may not incorporate all the functions that you need from your software.
Advantages of Bespoke Software In comparison, bespoke software is naturally going to be a perfect fit for your needs.
The developers will include every function you need and none of the functions that you don't.
They will also consider how your organisation works and craft the software to fit that, not the other way around.
Your bespoke software development team will also be able to tailor the programme to your existing systems allowing perfect integration and a smooth transition.
Good software developers will be able to tweak and modify your programme as your organisation evolves and changes over time and, because you have a more personal relationship with the builders of your original software you are far more likely to receive a fast and helpful customer service.
Disadvantages of Bespoke Software If you are unfortunate enough to take on a dodgy software developer, you may find that the programme is shoddy, buggy and unstable.
Finally, bespoke software is much more expensive than the packaged options available.
But, as long as you take on professionals to handle the development, your investment may be well worth the outlay.