custom business software

Custom Business Software Outperforms Off-the-Shelf Software

Customized software has proven to provide the real power and (security) behind websites and mobile devices for businesses of all sizes, as the story below testifies. This is because of the qualities that are inherent to custom software. Qualities that just don’t exist in off-the-shelf software. Custom software can provide real return on investment (ROI) for the customer, client, partner, supplier, employee, CEO, and anyone else using the organization’s business software. However, business strategists still argue whether to ‘Build vs. Buy’. That is, whether to ‘Build’ custom software or to ‘Buy’ off-the-shelf software.

The solution appears obvious when listening to IT decision makers expressing their opinions—a survey by CDW reflects over 80% of IT decision makers favor building customized business apps over buying pre-packaged (off-the-shelf) software. Few prepackaged software solutions truly meet all of a company’s business needs.

So what is a ‘Business App’?

A business application (or ‘enterprise app’) is software that a business would use to help solve its business problems, with the goal to make the organization’s processes and systems operate more efficiently and effectively. Business apps many times integrate with other apps used within the organization like payment, customer support, and inventory apps. Business applications make the customer experience better, like enabling a potential customer to (more) easily browse and order products or services from any device. The business can then receive the now customer’s purchase request in real time on any device platform…anywhere. A company’s custom application might be operated by a diverse group of stakeholders; including clients, customers, employees, suppliers, and distributers; each who might simultaneously access the application from separate locations or are automatically notified about inventory statuses via the app; a result which is intended to help make the company function more efficiently and effectively.

The types of business apps include, but are not limited to—

  • Automated Billing
  • Payment Processing
  • Inventory Management
  • Call Center and Customer Support
  • Customer Relationship Management (CRM)
  • HR Management
  • Business Intelligence
  • Messaging and Collaboration Systems


There is unquestionably a major shift towards the development of customized enterprise applications. The following are some reasons why customized software has become so popular.

Tailor Made for Every Business

Over 80% of IT decision makers prefer custom software over pre-packaged software because it better meets the needs of the business. Custom software is designed after considering the unique processes and operations of the business. These made-to-order applications give decision makers access to vital information and systems from any place or device. Customized enterprise applications cannot be matched with off-shelf applications efficiency.

Better Adaptability

Over 90% of business leaders say that custom applications can help companies make quicker, more-informed decisions. Over 70% believe that pre-packaged software cannot keep up with the pace of operational change over time like custom software can. Off-the-shelf (pre-packaged) apps are slow to adapting to the changing needs of businesses. Custom software is more scalable; and since companies have complete ownership of custom apps, software changes can be made more quickly and easily to align their business processes.

Faster Updates

Nearly 50%% of IT decision makers prefer custom enterprise applications because they offer more flexibility. Custom apps allow companies to perform immediate fixes and upgrades on their own schedule, whereas the buyers of pre-packaged apps have no control over what features will be added or removed in new software releases or when new releases occur.

Better Security

It’s extremely important to safeguard online transactions so that risks like hacking, phishing, and identity-theft are eliminated. Yet, it’s shocking that off-the-shelf enterprise apps often expose sensitive information to hackers. This sets the stage for intellectual theft, espionage, and other actions that damage businesses. According to a most recent CDW Report, businesses prefer custom mobile apps for reasons including data security (80%) and alignment with overall business strategy (70%).


What business wants to pay monthly subscriptions for off-the-shelf software for each of its workers? Custom software can be more cost effective for a business because the software is owned by the business and therefore can be used by as many workers as needed—without any subscription.

These are just some of the reasons why custom software development is becoming increasingly popular to organizations.

Has your organization ever used custom software? Let us know in the comments box below, and thanks for reading!

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