Bespoke Software is a custom made software that’s developed based on customer’s needs and requirements. Off the shelf software is a software which is already developed serving general purpose. Bespoke Software is the opposite of Off the Shelf software.
For example, at Qtec Solution Limited, a software development company we have a ready made software named ‘Creaify’ which is OpenAI’s chatGPT integrated with unlimited prompt creation feature and anyone can buy it in no time. On the other hand, the company has a full pledge team for providing bespoke software development service.
The term is not new. People also identify it as custom software.
What is bespoke software development?
It’s a process where you typically hire a company that takes the full responsibility of developing the custom software. Developing a software has multiple processes like analyzing and preparing Software Specific Requirements (SRS).
Then, doing UI/UX design based on the SRS. Frontend development, backend development comes after that. Then of course the deployment stages. Throughout the whole process, as a client the software development company keeps you highly involved in an agile way. Your involvement makes it custom tailored software with feedback in loop.
Why choose Bespoke software instead of Off The Shelf?
Well, this mostly depends on your requirements and budget. For example you want to create a Learning Management System where students can come to learn about coding. If you Google search you will find tons of LMS scripts from 100 US dollar to 500 US Dollars. If any of those matches your requirements you might go for it.
But, if you want to create something special and give an experience that no other LMS is giving, you will have to go for custom tailored software development. Those scripts are generally purposely made while you might need a customly designed one.
Why does a business develop bespoke software?
There are a lot of reasons to develop custom software. Businesses develop custom software to avoid following reasons:
Not highly scalable: In general purpose Off The Shelf software is not highly scalable a lot of the time. When your users, visitors increase in a significant level, it might not work well as it is not tested and developed for large scale usage.
Unwanted codebase: As the software is developed for common industry users, it must have a lot of features, codebase that you don’t need. The APIs are being called, the functions are being called, the heavy codebase affects the performance of the software. Also, it is responsible for high server bills.
Your software is the same as your competitors: As the system used by a lot of businesses like yours, all of your software looks the same, acts the same. This doesn't create your unique brand identification. Also, if any issue is found in the codebase, all the same sites are vulnerable to the hackers at the same time.
Your product is not unique: There’s no innovation or creativity in your product, as it came out of one team’s brainstorming. Your user might search and find the alternative software which is the same as your own.
You might not have full control: Some of the time, Off the Shelf software developers don't give full control to the clients. A software might need a lot of third party packages, libraries, assets, APIs with licences that you might not own.
You don’t have a say: In Off the Shelf software, you don’t have a say for the product. You will have to take whatever they have if there’s no customization option.
Apart from those, there are more reasons why companies develop custom tailored software. These are also the disadvantages of Off The Shelf Software solutions.
Advantages of Bespoke Software Development
Your innovation solves the problem: when you plan to develop a software, that’s because you identified a problem that you would like to solve with a tech product. You bring your USP, innovation, creativity into it. The biggest advantage of bespoke software is, you have full freedom to do it.
Scalability: In custom development, you can make it as scalable as possible. If you know your target audience(TG), the size of the market and your plan of acquisition, you can develop a scalable software based on that. This way, it will save a lot of time and money later.
Designed according to your business: A Off the shelf software is designed according to the vast industry while a bespoke software is designed for specially your business.
Intellectual property ownership: With custom development, you and your business owns the codebase, assets and full intellectual property. At Qtec Solution Limited, we hand over all the intellectual property once the project is completed. The client is the sole owner on the IP.
No unwanted API/Gateway/Function in code: There’s no unwanted API/Gateway/Function/Class is integrated or written without your consent and without the requirements. That keeps the project extremely clean, readable, usable and fast. Writing unwanted class functions codes might hamper the overall performance and affect the end user.
Aligns with Vision: A bespoke software aligns with a long term vision. It can be made aligning with your future plan, quality of support and many more.
Disadvantages of Custom Software Development
However along with a wide range of advantages there might be some drawbacks to bespoke software development. Here are a few,
Cost: As Off the shelf software is sold to a lot of same industry customers, the company can keep a very low cost and you can afford it very easily. While, custom tailored software development might seem costly in comparison to this.
Time: You need to invest a fair amount of time while developing bespoke software. For Off the shelf software it’s like plug and play. You just buy it and use it within a week or just a day.
Long Process: A bespoke software development can take months to be developed. It’s a long process if your project is not your fulltime concern but a side hustle.
How to choose a Bespoke software development company?
There are a lot of companies around the world that provide custom tailored software development services. You need to be careful while selecting a company to do your job.
Check if the company understands the project: It’s important to have a good understanding of the project. If they understand the technical requirements as well as business requirements, you are good to move forward.
Agile software development method: There are a lot of software development methodologies. Check if the agency follows any agile software development method like scrum. This will keep you in loop.
If the team is full time: A bespoke software development is a big job. A lot of the time companies tend to develop it with part timers which have a lot of potential to fail. Check if the agency has software engineers in house. We, Qtec Solution Limited, identified this problem long ago and all of our team members are in house.
Team capacity: To develop a bespoke software a company requires multiple team expertise like, Business team to analyse requirements, UI/UX Design team to convert the requirements into Figma design. Then the frontend and backend software engineers come in. After that a good Software Quality Assurance is needed to test and make the software bug free.
Looking to consult your idea and get a free estimation? At Qtec Solution Limited, we do that for free. You are one step away. Click the contact us link and book a meeting at calendly.
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