Custom Software Solutions for Your Enterprise Needs – Pt III

Avoid the temptation to either choose the first developer you encounter or the one with the lowest price. Instead, consider the background and accomplishments of each firm that you consider as well as customer reviews. Also, the following considerations can help you hire the right ERP software developer for your business application.

Experience matters

Look for a firm that has served similarly sized businesses in similar industries. Stay away from development firms who want you to pay for them to learn “on-the-job” as they develop your ERP System.

Visit the websites of developers to see their client portfolio and examples of their work. You can also directly ask for this information. Remember that your job is unique. A firm might fit well even if it has developed applications that substantially differ from the one that you need.

The right developer will have a disciplined approach to version control, testing, and bug tracking. Choose from developers who run continuous and exhaustive integration tests.

Communication is Key

Open and honest communications are essential, so determine the frequency of meetings and the channels to be used. Get details, such as price, ownership of the code and service terms, in writing. Avoid making verbal agreements or doing business with a handshake.

The right developer will act as a partner and provide candid advice for your business and the design of your new accounting software.

Putting the Plan Together

Avoid the frustrations that some businesses have while working with an accounting system developer by making sure that you and the firm have a clear understanding of expectations, responsibilities, and terms. Also, be specific about what you want your application to do and how it should look.

As work begins on your manufacturing software, insist on regular communications so that your team and the developer can evaluate progress and ensure compliance with software and scheduling requirements. In other words, stay actively involved in the development process.

At the onset of the project, you might not have a definite budget. As development progresses, however, you should get a good idea about the cost of your ERPNext application in terms of time and money. As a result, you will get a better idea of what features you can and cannot afford to include in the initial product. In fact, by the end of the design phase of the project, you should have a fairly reliable estimate of its total cost.

In fact, the end of the design period provides an opportunity to reassess the project as a whole. At this juncture, you should take your plans and specifications and move to a different developer if communication and progress up to this point have left you dissatisfied. Otherwise, proceed with the signing of the contract.

What to Expect While Your Application Is Being Developed?

After signing a contract to complete the project, you will still need to actively participate in the work, mostly by supplying the developer with feedback that can lead to refinements in the specifications of the application.


At the end of the development phase, you will have the software available for installation and testing at your facility.

Software Maintenance

The lifecycle of the new custom application has only begun when your company takes possession of it. You will likely have a chance to enter into a maintenance agreement with the software firm that will specify the role of the developer in resolving bugs and tweaking performance. Additionally, you should have a rate schedule that will apply for the development of new features and add-ons.

The goal of maintenance is to sustain the value of the software after its implementation. This includes backups, performance improvements, bug fixes and other roles of the developer as specified in the contract. The maintenance phase can also include training and support options.

At first, the prospect of hiring a developer to create custom software might seem daunting. After assessing the relative total costs of ownership of off-the-shelf software vs. custom applications, however, the latter option seems more practical. Although out-of-box-solutions have their advantages and, therefore, a place in some businesses, custom software can supply companies with a valuable competitive edge in the marketplace.

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