Myths, false beliefs and assumptions obstruct the communication and software development process. Is it really custom software development slow, expensive and complicated? It doesn't necessarily have to be that way. Here we are going to answer those and other questions because the myths in software development confuse business people, product owners, end-users, managers and developers themselves. 

After advising, analyzing and thinking about the situation, many companies decide to make custom development to solve a problem or improve some part of the business, however, some others get carried away by certain “myths” and end up acquiring an existing software the wrong way.

A computer with a keyboard and monitor on a desk.

For this opportunity we want to present some myths of custom software development, the important thing is that you remember that each solution must be based on the real needs that your company has and that before making a decision you must inform yourself well.

You may be surprised if we tell you that in most cases it is better to develop the software than to buy it off-the-shelf. The myths that we are going to present to you can contribute to understanding why: 

Myth 1: It is very expensive. Actually, custom software development is very competitive in terms of costs if you consider the great benefit that it can bring to your business. Many packages are licensed per user or per installation, so a custom product can be used by several users and on different computers without incurring additional costs.

Myth 2: The development of a custom software solution takes a lot of time: while it is true that it takes time to develop, it doesn’t necessarily have to take too long. It’s important to keep in mind that the equipment that you will choose for the development of your solution and together with the developers will set the milestones. If you use precise methodology, you will know how long it might take and the estimate will be realistic.

Keep in mind that the software is built to match your expectations and needs, therefore you will not waste time trying to make it work.

Myth 3: Remote developers are worse than in-house developers. If you believe that having a full-time developer in-house is better than a dedicated team of developers, you should think twice. You have an additional cost and spend time recruiting and managing the in-house developers and there’s still no guarantee that they’ll do a good job and provide the right solution according to your business needs.

Myth 4: Adding/changing features is a piece of cake. Some people (read clients) believe that providing a shortlist with the requirements is enough to start the development process and the details can be added in due course, thinking that changing things is changing a few lines of code. False! 

Starting software development without documentation can cost a lot of time and money, what’s worse the project may even fail. Also, if the requirements keep changing over and over again, so the team can’t properly test the product.

A man working at a desk with a computer and a laptop.

Myth 5: You don’t need testing. People outside the software industry usually think that anyone can test software. However, testing and Quality Assurance are not the same. We talked about that in this article. But, a lot of clients think that testing is just time-consuming costs too much. It is a cost, but whatever you pay for testing during the development process will be less than what you would have to pay to fix the bugs afterward.

Myth 6: Custom software development support is expensive. You may think that commercial software support is cheaper, but in many cases, custom software maintenance is cheaper and simpler.

If you find a good developer it is actually quite straightforward, because, bear in mind that this way you have direct communication with the people who are working on your solution. The team that developed a solution can provide maintenance and support more effectively, compared to the customer service team that’s in charge of support for commercial software solutions.  

Some maintenance and update costs may occur, you should know this from the beginning. These costs are essential if you want to have a solution that’s always updated and in line with the latest developments.

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Myth 7: Release of the product = end of the project. It would’ve been great if that were the case, but unfortunately, it is just another myth. Software products are evolving rapidly. In many ways, software solutions are like living organisms, they have lifecycles (SDLC) and are always changing. After the initial release, end-users can ask for improved features and new functions and those in charge of software maintenance should ensure that everything runs smoothly. Good software requires constant care!

Myth 8: Successful development project = successful product. A software development company can organize an excellent project development process and ensure the quality of the final product. Also, they are responsible to deliver the project on time and within the allocated budget. But they can’t guarantee that the product will be successful on the market. When you’re deciding to develop a software solution you should always have a monetization strategy as well as a marketing and promotion strategy for the product.

These are some of the myths regarding custom development. The key is to acquire all the information and base your decision on your company’s needs and expectations.

At IBORN we offer custom software development because we understand that each business is unique and therefore has specific needs that should be met in a particular way. The team that’s in charge of the development is essential – that’s pretty much self-evident, and we know how important a software solution can be for a company, often it is crucial for its growth.