Can cheap custom software save you money? Sometimes getting what you paid for can be the worst-case scenario. At Lexul, clients will come to us with their problems and we are the solution designer, tailoring a product to precisely fit their needs.
Sometimes however this can lead to price shopping after the solution has been presented. The bottom line to remember is that there is no such thing as good, cheap, custom software.
What makes good custom software?
Software is generally dependent on a number of factors. Some, but not all, to consider are this.
- The quality and features of the solution
- The efficiency of the development techniques
- Long term sustainability
Purchasing cheap software invariably means having to lower expectations on at least one of these factors.
Quality of features
The quality of features is a really big deal and yet it can be hard to determine quality in the purchasing process. Are there corners being cut based on implied features and are you aware of this if so? Cost comparison is very difficult unless you know precisely what you are getting.
One great example would be authentication, such as logging in with a username and password.
If your mobile app or web application has password authentication does it contain a reset feature?
If that reset is done via email how is that being managed, and deliverability being maintained for a critical function?
Is your application secure? How do you know this? As a business owner you have to trust and rely on your developer to provide this solution. Are you confident the selected company is doing this?
Apps require an interface for users to interact. Does your developer understand how your staff will be using it and do they have the incentive to make it as easy as possible for your staff to use the software?
Efficiency in development is a prime area to reduce software costs. A company that has a history of producing similar solutions, knows the needs of the industry, and has almost certainly produced many similar features before will be more cost effective.
Lexul uses the same technology stack for each project. This means we know the right and the wrong way to implement specific features based on our prior experience.
You are not paying for full R&D. Instead, knowledge of past completed projects is being applied and built upon specifically for you.
Long term sustainability is an often-overlooked aspect of software development. Quickly written software will be cheaper upfront, but without consideration for maintenance and long-term security it will inevitably be far more expensive long term.
Consider how long you intend to use this software and then factor in the effect of a failed security upgrade leaving you unable to use the software for a week, or even a month!
What would the cost be of that lost productivity?
Would you be able to reach the software developer quickly in this instance?
The bottom line
It’s unlikely you are the lowest bidder for projects within your own industry. You almost certainly look to offer some competitive advantage.
At Lexul we offer long term reliability and full feature coverage while being able to offset that premium with efficiency in development.
Our challenge to you is to ask us to justify why our bid may cost you more money initially, and then ask your freelancer why their solution may be so cheap.
The results will be revealing.