If you need a web application that caters to your business needs you should work with an experienced company that will offer you professional advice and bespoke solutions. As you set goals for your business, investing in custom web applications will help you achieve them in a shorter time frame and with a better long term ROI.
If you’ve already tried implementing one or more third party applications and are considering the bespoke development option, we can help you get the best value from your investment. But to start with it helps to have an overview of the steps involved in designing and building a custom solution.
As you will see, custom software starts with an analysis of your needs and goals and structures functionality based on these desired outcomes. This is the opposite approach to using a third party application – whereby you adapt already existing functions to more or less achieve what you need the software to do.
Understanding Your Business
Before you embark on building a web application, whether yourself or with the assistance of a software development company, you need to understand the trajectory your business needs to take. Use this to sketch out a list of core business functions – which will form the road map for your software development.
Assign an order of priority to these goals. Many will already be processed with the help of legacy third party or custom apps, but knowing your priorities will help you understand what the web application you are building should accomplish. Moreover it will shed light on the type of development you need – whether a wholly new application or an interface to sync numerous third party applications – and give you some investment priorities.
The Development Process
There are essentially three ways to acquire bespoke software with the right choice dependent on your preferences, budget and level of in house resource.
1) In House development: The software is designed, built and implemented by your own team. For businesses that already have a sizable IT team and the required skills, this is a good option - although you may still need to bring in professionals from outside to bridge some knowledge gaps.
2) Third Party Design & Build: Assign the whole process to a single third party developer. This is the easiest route and requires the least input and infrastructure on your side. However, your partner should be carefully chosen for their capacity, experience, cost, expertise, and reputation. Software developers come in all shapes and sizes – from sole traders to large national companies – and each has its own special focus in terms of technology and process.
3) Third Party Design, Build & Project Management: In some cases you may wish to work with two third parties. Many Indian companies offer cheap rates and fast delivery for bespoke applications, the drawback being the distance and often their design expertise. To overcome this you may wish to source a design from a developer in the UK and outsource the build to a partner in India. The UK partner may be retained to project manage the build and ensure smooth implementation.
Implementation & Support
Implementation is viewed with trepidation by many companies, and you won’t have to look far to find horror stories about what could go wrong. However, implementation of a custom application is far simpler than for third party software as your custom solution will have been built from the ground up to fit in with the architecture of your business.
Put your web application to work and get accustomed to operating it. Remember to maintain your systems properly so they don’t break down. Part of implementation is establishing the right training schedule to ensure all users get the best from the application, and a regular upgrade and maintenance plan is put in place. If you have worked with a third party during development they should be able to advise and support you on the best way to achieve this.
Find Out More
Remember that how you operate your business will determine the web application you should use. Building a unique web application helps you stand out and stay ahead of your competition. To find out more about the specific benefits, please call us today on 020 8144 2000, or send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org.