I've managed to use all your phrases, but it's somewhat repetitive in
places as a result. Please request clarification if you need any
YOUR APPLICATION: SHOULD YOU USE OFF-THE-SHELF OR BESPOKE SOFTWARE?
When you need a software application for your business, should you
license off-the-shelf software or should you commission bespoke
(custom) software? There's no answer that's right for every business
and every application, but there are some points which you should
If you are looking for a standard application such as invoicing
software, you will find a wide range of off-the-shelf packages to
choose from. Accounting software design is fairly standard, and if you
have fairly standard needs you will find an off-the-shelf solution to
be economical and convenient. However, if your business has unique
needs that go beyond the customization provided by a packaged solution
you could consider bespoke software.
Bespoke application development can be done in-house, or contracted
out to a freelance programmer. A freelance software developer can be
cost-effective, often having fewer overheads than an in-house team.
Bespoke programming by a VBA developer could provide an effective way
to develop custom invoicing software, for example.
Perhaps your business needs a database driven website. In this case
you are less likely to find an off-the-shelf solution available,
except for certain standard parts of a website such as support forums
or order handling. Your business is likely to need a custom database,
and you may find that an Access database developer can produce a great
custom database solution by means of Access VBA programming.
If you need an SQL database programmer, you can find database
developers whose bespoke software development skills include custom
database design and custom database development. An SQL Server
programmer will perform bespoke database design and develop custom
database software to match the requirements of your business.
VBA development skills are widely available, but for an SQL-backed
website you will need a developer who is also a skilled database
programmer, perhaps an SQL Server freelance developer. Bespoke
development isn't just programming - you will need a custom software
developer able to succeed at all phases of work related to the bespoke
database: analysis, design, coding, testing, and commissioning or
Custom databases underlie most database driven websites. Fortunately,
the bespoke software UK market is lively. When it comes to a choice
between off-the-shelf software and bespoke development software, UK
business might be tempted to choose the standard software package but
in many cases it would be better to consider bespoke development.