When a business must change a procedure, add information more than once, or make several reports to include all the necessary filters employees are doing more work than should be required. These glitches, double checks, and extra steps to document an order, invoice, or inventory request are typically due to a problem with software integration. Most business owners try to use standard software that is sold off the shelf because it is inexpensive and easy to install. The issue is that standard software only allows for minimum flexibility and customization within the applications.
Taking the time to re-enter information, setting up specifications for each production run, or creating excessive reports decreases productivity and efficiency. It also leaves more room for errors, omissions, and confusion. This is no way to remain competitive and move the business forward. Standard software does not meet the needs of every business in an industry. Deviations from standard procedures, a proprietary formula, or a unique step in a process will cause problems with integration.
Business owners can work with the standard products and risk losing the advantage uniqueness brings. While productivity may increase, the business may cease to be the frontrunner in the competition. Making more of an ordinary product that is made the same way by a dozen other businesses is not exactly competing.
If there are only one or two applications that do not suit the needs, the business owner can have custom applications added to the standard software to fix the problem. A developer discovers what is lacking in the software based on information provided by the owner. Applications are created, added to the software, and integrated so everything works as a coordinated whole.
When a business is not like any other in an industry, it is wise to invest in custom systems, software, and applications. The phases in the process are time-consuming and a one-of-a-kind integrated whole system is expensive. The project can cost millions of dollars and take up to two-years depending on the complexity and size of the business. It is no surprise that businesses seeking this option are large corporations or international businesses with branches in several countries