Build vs. Buy
Reading Time: 10 minutes

In this ever-changing business world, businesses are trying to adapt to new situations and requirements daily. Every business is now looking towards meeting customer demands quickly in ways that are efficient for employees and staff.

This is where specific tools are needed to solve problems that are hindering employees from working to their full potential. These tools and applications come in a variety of types and uses, but sometimes, there simply aren’t any apps available that can help your specific needs. This is where you may consider building your own apps an advantage.

In this blog, we’ll discuss what sort of apps can be built and good reasons behind building your own apps.

How can you decide between build vs. buy regarding apps?

Build vs. buy is an ever-present decision that needs to be made by companies when they want an application for solving a particular problem. This question stems from deciding whether to build an in-house solution using IT resources (build) or buying a market-ready application as a product (buy).

Build vs. Buy is an ever-present decision that needs to be made by companies when they want an application for solving a particular problem.

This debate has often tipped in favour of buying the necessary software as building your own app or custom business solution seemed like a time-consuming and costly process. However, with a rising change in the way that in-house solutions can be built, it’s time to reconsider the common solution of buying a ready-made software or application. The following factors can help you decide between buying products or building your own apps:

Factors that help you decide between buying products or building your own apps

1. Costs

You need to have a good idea of how much money you have to spend on a digital solution. If you have the funds necessary to build a robust application that can help you for years down the line, building your own apps might be the correct answer to your problem.
However, with new technologies like no-code low-code, even the cost of creating applications has also been minimized.

A ready-to-use application is better for your budget as all of the maintenance and building costs will be handled by the platform or vendor. This reduces the costs that have to be borne by you and you can get a full-scale ready service at a feasible price.

2. Time

With ready-made tools, it’s much quicker to decide on a tool, acquire it, and then implement it. Your timeline drastically reduces, and you can get going with the new application’s capabilities quickly. However, you will still need a team to properly implement the application and handle the manual patches and features available.

With building your own application, you need to gauge whether you have the time available to wait for the application to be developed and polished enough that customers or employees can use it. This will definitely take a longer time than buying a ready-made solution unless you are using a no-code platform that can greatly accelerate the development.

3. Control

Building your own application can give your employees control over the features available in the application. This can provide them with a better chance of getting software that can solve their specific problem without creating other problems.

Buying ready-made applications mean that the employees have to settle for whichever functionalities are offered by the ready application.

4. Risk

By buying an application, you run the risk of either sharing sensitive information with those who manage the software or bugs in the system. You’ll be at the mercy of the vendor to fix any reported security, performance, or functional issues in the application.

With building your own apps, appropriate quality assurance and control checks can be put in place to avoid any security and functional issues. Even if issues arise, they can be fixed immediately.

5. Opportunities

Buying an application gives you the freedom to take up more opportunities quickly and utilize the benefits of the application quickly. Building your own app can cause valuable IT resources to be used to create this application, leading to problems with fulfilling any other requirements of the IT department. No-code platforms help address this challenge.

The Build Vs. Buy debate has often tipped in favour of buying the necessary software as building your own app or custom business solution seemed like a time-consuming and costly process. However, with a rising change in the way that in-house solutions can be built, it’s time to reconsider the easy solution of buying a ready-made software or application.

What type of applications are generally built or bought?

When deciding whether to build or buy an application, it is necessary to understand what the application is made for. Every application has a specific purpose, and the company needs to decide between building your own application to specific standards or buying an application with pre-decided features.

Generally, it is recommended that companies build applications that can help with their core competencies. The core competencies of a company can involve the main USPs of your company that differentiate you from your competitors as well as any services that you offer that are unique. If a better, specific software can help your company gain a competitive advantage against the other competitors in the market, building your own application to your specific requirements might be wise.

Generally, it is recommended that companies build applications that can help with their core competencies.

Building your own applications for your core competencies will also enable you to decide which other programs to integrate with as well as build a customized solution that can suit all your needs. Building applications can also help if you have a very specialized business or business requirements that cannot be completely fulfilled by applications that are available on the market.

Building your own application may also be recommended for businesses that work in an industry with sensitive information. A built application will allow the business to complete tasks and activities without using a third-party application which could pose a security risk. However there a few issues with building applications, namely the time-restraints and rising costs of building your own custom application. Also, if requirements get changed midway, this can result in timelines extending even further.

Buying applications is recommended if you have a limited budget or limited technical proficiency. If you have a smaller budget, it might be a better idea to find a good application on the market that can fulfill some of your needs. Also, if your IT team lacks the technical expertise to develop an application on their own, it might be a better idea to buy an application instead of holding the IT team accountable for such a large product.

Buying applications is also ideal when you need to get an application to increase productivity in a short timeframe. If your business is in a common industry, there may be good effective applications available in the market already. If a unique application does not provide a competitive advantage in your industry, buying a robust application may be a better idea for your business.

Newer technology can definitely help you get the best of both worlds, regardless of the challenges faced in either approach of the build vs. buy question. New solutions such as no-code application development can help you build your own apps without the long timeframes and exponential costs. No-code development is also easy for anyone to do regardless of their previous coding or programming experience. This form of application development can help lessen your IT team’s load and enable your employees to create apps to meet their needs perfectly.

How can you use no-code to build your own application?

No-code platforms can be used to build various applications, which can help you solve many problems. This form of development can help you get around many obstacles that hindered traditional development from being completed on-time and within budget.

Coupled with the newer technology available such as artificial intelligence (AI), machine learning (ML), and robotic process automation (RPA), no-code development can become a fantastic way to create applications that can boost productivity. 29% of all developers worldwide were using some type of AI or ML as of 2018, and this number is only growing.

An enterprise-grade no-code platform can also help you consolidate and develop apps through a singular platform. This form of application development can also lead to citizen developers creating applications to solve their problems, thus freeing up the IT department to focus on other strategic ventures. Using methods like no-code low-code development can help you build the application you need at a fraction of the cost and time that traditional development would require.

Building your own application through no-code technology is also ideal as you can find templates for commonly required functions. According to your unique requirements, these ready-to-use applications can later be adapted and tweaked to suit your needs. This is not possible with other readymade applications which are available to buy.

29% of all developers worldwide were using some type of AI or ML as of 2018 and this number is only growing.

How can different types of businesses benefit from no-code?

No-code applications can help your business in a variety of ways. Regardless of scale and size, every type of business can benefit from adopting these types of applications. Small to medium-sized businesses, large businesses, and even entrepreneurs can use these applications to boost productivity and build custom applications. Here are a few ways in which no-code applications can help your business:

Small or medium-sized businesses:
Small and medium-sized businesses can use no-code application builders to solve problems in specific departments. Building your own application could also help with integrating or automating many different functions on one common platform. For example, building your own apps could help you manage HR department processes and streamline workflows in that specific department. Manual and repetitive processes can be easily automated using no-code, leading to increased productivity and more efficiency in processes. For Navayuga Engineering Company Limited, Quixy was able to help them automate all of their HR and payroll processes in 2 months. This effort has enabled them to reduce the time needed for payroll processes by up to 60%!

Large businesses:
Large businesses can use no-code application builders to leverage the process gaps that are created when managing workflows across the business. Process gaps and silos are often unavoidable and no-code applications may help solve this problem through automation efforts. The no-code solutions can later be integrated with the original IT systems, leading to tried and tested solutions that can help make processes and collaboration smoother. This method of dealing with process gaps using no-code can also be implemented while handling bought applications that don’t fit your exact requirements and thus have process gaps.

Entrepreneurs:
No-code application builders can help entrepreneurs create and test their Minimum Viable Product (MVP) faster, in a more cost-effective way. Generally, application development can take time which prevents entrepreneurs from testing out their product in the market to get a sense of market demand and user experience. No-code application development can help them get their MVP to market faster without any of the large development costs associated with it.

Also read: The Impact of Digital Transformation on Business Performance

What are good reasons to build your own apps?

Building your own apps can be an advantage for companies, especially with the new advancements in technology. Solutions like no-code low-code have helped even the scales when it comes to the build vs. buy conundrum. Gartner predicts that low-code app platforms may account for more than 65% of application development activity. There are different advantages to building applications on your own instead of buying applications from market vendors.

Gartner predicts that low-code app platforms may account for more than 65% of application development activity.

Building your own apps can give you the following benefits:

8 benefits of building your own app

1. Freedom to develop in the future

Building your own apps or giving your IT department the chance to build will allow you to have the freedom to develop further in the future. Even if the application is developed with a certain set of features, peripheral and additional features can always be added later depending on the changing requirements. You will also be able to add and subtract features as necessary, leading to the optimum functionality for your business.

2. Faster reaction time to changing market requirements

Once a custom application is created, the application will be completely under the purview of the software and IT team. The IT team will know the software inside and out, which means that they are capable of changing and adding new features at any time.
This flexibility and ability to tweak the software may lead to allowing your company to remain a staunch competitor in your industry for longer. The ability to change your technology strategy may make all the difference in the future as save your company from becoming obsolete.

3. Saving on costs and time

Building your own apps can save you a lot of time and money in the long run. Buying readymade applications may seem cheaper at face value, however, you also need to consider the costs created by lacking certain needed features, which can lead to buying other applications to fill these gaps.

Building your own apps can save you a lot of time and money in the long run.

With a custom business solution, you can make sure that you have the exact functionalities that you need. Also, with recent advancements in technology, no-code business solutions are becoming more and more popular. These no-code solutions can allow you to work on a common platform as well as invite citizen developers and users from your business to create their own solutions for their problems.

4. Increased productivity due to specific features

With a custom application, your IT team can build the exact features and requirements that your employees need. With a well-designed application, your employee’s productivity can drastically increase. An application that consolidates all of the employee’s requirements can allow your employees to access all of the information and data that they need from one place, instead of requiring employees to constantly switch between multiple applications to perform their tasks.

5. Maintenance and support are easier

Considering that your IT team has built the application themselves, it’ll be easier for them to perform maintenance and make sure that the application is running smoothly. Considering that they know the ins and outs of the application, it’ll also be easier to provide support, patches, security updates, bug fixes, version upgrades, etc.

6. The democratization of technology

If your application is built using an enterprise-grade no-code platform or low-code platform, your employees can try creating their own custom applications for their specific requirements. This will also happen under the purview of the IT team on a common platform, preventing shadow IT from becoming a problem.

7. Better creativity can come from citizen developers

A citizen developer will always have a better understanding of the obstacles that are hindering them from completing their tasks efficiently. This unique understanding of their own requirements can translate into citizen developers developing the perfect tool for their needs. These citizen developers may have a creative and unique method of solving their own problems that may not occur to the IT team.

8. Ability to develop applications using an agile or iterative approach

Building your own application can allow you to develop an application using an iterative or agile approach. This can allow you to use insights from end-consumers which can help you create an application that suits all of your user’s needs.

Also read: Top 10 Benefits of No-Code App Development

Summary

As application development becomes a necessity for various industries and businesses, the build vs. buy question will only become more and more pertinent. Buying an application that’s on the market may suit your needs if you need a solution that meets most of your requirements quickly. However, when building your own app, you get the freedom to create a program that can meet all the needs of your employees and can be developed further in the future.

Quixy is a no-code app development platform that can help your company create applications to suit your unique needs. If you want to start building your own app using no-code, check out our free trial now!

Related Post

0 Comments
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments

Recent Posts

Digital Transformation Quotes
In-app-conversations
Business Leaders
aPaaS
Citizen Development

Quixy ranked “Leader” in No-Code and Rapid Application Development by G2.