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Is a stand-alone software best for your business?

The options for business software are endless. With solutions for every size, problem, operation, and function – choosing what is best for your business can seem a daunting task. Today we are answering the question on stand-alone software versus end-to-end solutions.

When making any operational decisions it is important to start by considering the following:

  1. What outcome do you want to achieve? Efficiency? Reporting?
  2. What is your budget?
  3. What does the future look like for your business? Will you need to upgrade again in the near future?
  4. How many resources do you currently have?

Once you have planned what you want to get out of a business software, and any issues you wish to solve – it is time to go over your options.

Stand-Alone Software

Dedicated software applications have a very specialised focus. They normally operate for a single business function and aim to be specific and detailed in their functions. Often seen in HR, accounting, sales and customer service departments. So what are the benefits of stand alone software?

  • Highly detailed reporting functions that go beyond just a summary
  • Ability to manipulate data and customise reports
  • Everything you need for that function is available without having to dig through other areas of the software
  • More sophisticated functions and more specialised options.
  • More options for customisation
  • Usually best-of-breed and developed by experts in that specific field
  • Usually have the specific user in mind rather than taking a broad approach

Like most business software, there are usually small disadvantages. For stand-alone platforms, there is a defining factor in whether they can integrate with other software or not. Integration is a key tool that allows you to work with highly specialised software, while still making the connections needed to other areas. For example getting a HR software integrated with accounting software allows the HR department to work within a system designed specifically with their operations in mind, while still automatically feeding the information to other departments as needed.

End to End Software

Having one solution for all business functions can allow for a more simplified approach. They normally have a range of aspects, plugins, and features that work together to bring all of the departments and business operations together. So what are the benefits of end to end software?

  • Access to the different departments and information can be done automatically
  • Reports are often simple and give a snapshot
  • You can get a full snapshot of the entire organisation.

The main disadvantages of this solution is that the detail and sophistication of reporting and operations are limited.

So what is best for your business? As discussed, you need to do some planning and find out what YOU want to get out of a software, where you see your business growing and more. If you are looking for a specialised, stand-alone software, integration will be your new best friend. Have a chat with the software provider to find out how you can get a highly functional software that integrates with other departments and tools.