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In a digital age of working, companies depend on their software and how efficiently it runs more than ever before. As organisations evolve, so should their software. Below are six signs to help you identify whether your current software is need of renewal and the positives of investing in a bespoke database.

1 – Are you looking to expand or sell business?

If a company is expanding, software that can cope with the changes in business processes will aid that expansion, not just allow it. If the organisation is on the smaller side, with inefficient funds for bespoke design, a renewal of off-the-shelf may be necessary. However, the newer software will need to be flexible so that it doesn’t’ inhibit progress. This is what you pay for with bespoke, which will adapt and evolve with the company and its changing requirements.

2 – Are all programs you use compatible?

Some software allows for multiple programs which all use the same operating base. Outdated systems are not always compatible with the rest of the company software. This causes numerous issues when utilising all systems as they should all be working in harmony. Custom software can ensure compatibility - a service which may not be covered in the off-the-shelf software package. It works more efficiently through one platform, which makes it easier to train employees. The custom software is built around what a company already does, making it 100% compatible.

3 – Are you keeping up with the competition?

Smooth running software should set businesses apart from competitors. Out of date programs will not have the competitive edge, especially if the companies you are up against have their own bespoke software package. They are designed specifically to optimise an individual company’s unique processes, therefore, making it run more efficiently. By investing funds into improvements, customer service will also be enhanced, putting you in line with the competition at the very least.

4 – Does your current software meet your requirements? Are there limitations?

If software regularly grinds to halt, it fails to meet requirements and forces limitations on a business’ ability to operate efficiently. In 2017, software should make it easier to run a business remotely, whilst maintaining effective systems in a central location. If you’re having to maintain an expensive, large server, then it may be time to look at a bespoke database, although it has a more expensive initial outlay, the benefits will be worth the investment.

5 – Are there certain elements of your current software that you don’t use?

Do you have pointless additions as part of your package that are taking up space and incurring costs? Maybe they are outdated and you have no use for them anymore. The evolution of a business can leave certain software elements obsolete. This is taking up the space of a feature that could actually help the business grow, instead of inhibiting it. Bespoke integrates these elements so that they meet the exact company requirements.

6 – Do you understand your current software processes?

Are there any elements that you don’t understand but are integrated into your software, or would it be clearer if you had designed every aspect yourself? Bespoke software allows you to choose exactly what is integrated into the programs.

Nick Thompson, managing director of DCSL Software, said: "Whilst there are thousands if not millions of individual off-the-shelf systems that might meet a particular business need, identifying the right software – and right vendor – to support your mission critical business processes is fraught with difficulty. At DCSL Software, we build software for businesses by piecing together our own experiences and building blocks to create software that works for your business, the way your business needs it to."

The benefits of bespoke software will always outweigh the pros of off-the-shelf. Investing in bespoke will allow processes to change and adapt to the business.

By Hannah Richards, Amplified Business Content