What Should You Be Looking for in a Custom Software Development Company?
There are a variety of reasons people seek out a custom software solution for their business, and it is sometimes the biggest decision a business might make. The most common reason is that there is no software solution that solves the problem(s) they are trying to solve.
It could be that there are software solutions, but they have poor functionality or just don’t fit exactly what they’re trying to do. It could be that there is a solution out there that is prohibitively expensive with many features the company would never use. If you find yourself starting on the journey to find a custom software development company, here are five thoughts to keep in mind as you get started.
Communication Is Key
It’s the key to any healthy relationship and it’s also the key to developing successful custom software.
Rare is a software development project that doesn’t require consultation and advice along the way. Look for a software development company that has been around a while and has the battle scars to prove it. And make sure they are good communicators so that if you request something they have tried in the past and found doesn’t work, they will not hesitate to communicate that experience to you.
At Atiba, we’re often lauded for our quick response time. We’ve always offered a 24/7 support option and we don’t want any questions laying there unanswered.
They should also be able to recommend ways to solve your specific requirements. If you lay out your vision and come away thinking, “I have no idea what they are talking about, I guess I’ll just have to trust them,” you’re setting yourself up for possible trouble down the road.
If you’re looking for a custom software solution, you’ve probably reached your last nerve trying to deal with all the available products that don’t quite solve your problem. That means you need software that will do exactly what it is you want it to do.
This is where experience is an advantage for a software development firm. A company with leaders who have solved a variety of problems over the years brings institutional knowledge and wisdom to the table that greatly increases the chances that your new software will be successful.
They don’t necessarily have to have already built exactly what you want for someone else, but they may have experience with some of the components and processes you are requesting. Plus, if they’ve been around, it shows that they’ve encountered plenty of problems and been able to come up with solutions.
Look For A Strong User Experience Development History
A user-friendly interface is vital to your new software’s success. The backend can function beautifully, but if users can’t figure out how to use it, the software is useless. Many developers fall into a trap thinking that the users will figure it out. Unfortunately, users are impatient and fickle. If they can’t make sense of what they have in front of them, they’re just going to go to the next piece of software.
One thing we love to do at Atiba is to set up regular progress meetings with our clients. That way, you can see for yourself how the project is coming along and make sure it makes sense to you. Even though we’ll be along for the post-launch period and ongoing support, we believe it’s important that you have a solid focus on your software as well.
Make sure the custom software development company you choose places an emphasis on user experience (UX), which includes rigorous quality assurance (QA) all along the development cycle.
Speaking of support and the development cycle…
They Have A Clear Support Policy
Support is a big part of any software release. If a software development company isn’t going to stick with you through the release and foreseeable future, it doesn’t sound like they really care about what happens to you or the outcome.
You’re getting a software solution that is being built from scratch, so you need to expect some bugs and quirks upon deployment. Bugs, although unpleasant, are often just a natural part of the development process. Make sure the company you choose gives you a clear picture of what support is included, and how much support that is not included is going to cost.
Check Their Work
A good indicator of future success is a rich history of past success. Take time to have them show you custom software development projects they’ve done in the past, explain the process and problems they went through, and, if possible, show you the end result. Not only is this an important step in your due diligence, but it will also give you peace of mind moving forward that your project is in the right hands.
Sometimes, it can be hard to find specific examples but it’s necessary to ask a few questions about their past work. If you’re not sure where to start, you should think about asking:
- Have you ever done any similar projects?
- What issues have you run into with projects?
- Have you worked with clients of our business size before?
Although there are plenty of other questions that will naturally come up the rest of the way, it’s a good idea to start out with these basic ones.
Atiba is Nashville’s Leading Custom Software Development Company
We know that your business needs more than an out-of-the-box solution and we offer more than out-of-the-box ideas and strategies. With nearly 30 years of experience in the custom software industry, we’re ready to build you a solution that’s just for you.
We’ll break down the process into three distinct parts:
- Consulting and Strategy
- Launch and Support
We’ve worked with plenty of businesses, both large and small, against tight deadlines. No matter what custom software project you have, we’re here and ready to help. Reach out to us today for a project quote or if you just want to know more. We can’t wait to hear from you!