Customized software development entails the commissioning, development and release of a software product tailored to a single specific entity. The software is designed to address its needs precisely as opposed to the more traditional and widespread off-the-shelf software. The software is designed keeping the company’s infrastructure, branding and implementation needs in mind, implying it can only work for that organization.
The benefit to custom software is the simple fact it provides features off-the-shelf software doesn’t. Designing an application with your organization’s needs in consideration implies an increased level of productivity. If you have a software application designed to increase productivity or address an internal need, the cost of it is offset by the promise of increased efficiency. If your organization has a need unique enough to warrant for custom software development, then customizing a solution rather than settling for an off-the-shelf application becomes a smart course of action.
The risks associated with custom software vary in accordance to the user being developed for. The purchasing company must have an in-depth understanding of their needs and how they want the end product to address that need. Identifying new needs during the development process isn’t uncommon, though it results in added costs as more development time and effort is required. The risk of frequent changes such as these can result in a loss of project scope, or scope creep as it’s called in the project management world, and can result in an end product different or insufficient to the original needs.