To Buy? Or To Build? … That Is The Question!

Written by Michael DeVries

Continued from page 1

2) Are you planning to managerepparttar project, and project team(s), yourself? And/or are you planning to “outsource” part to all ofrepparttar 149509 management of your project? What arerepparttar 149510 costs in terms of time, effort and money for each of these alternatives? Which of these alternatives hasrepparttar 149511 minimum risks torepparttar 149512 successful completion of your application development project?, These are *important* considerations as failing to completerepparttar 149513 development of your application(s) may make pursuing this option very costly!

3) What arerepparttar 149514 costs – time, effort and/or money – to also developrepparttar 149515 documentation and training (if applicable) for your application(s)?

4) How do you plan to supportrepparttar 149516 developed application(s)? By training “in house” staff to support it? And/or engaging external developers and/or support staff?

5) How do you plan to handle maintenance on this new application(s)? Do you haverepparttar 149517 source code? Do you plan to handle future maintenance yourself / “in house”? and/or Are you going to engagerepparttar 149518 original development team (assuming they are willing and available) to make any future additions and/or changes to your system(s)? If so have you negotiated / “locked in” a rate for these future maintenance efforts?

Etc. Etc.

Now, let us look atrepparttar 149519 “Buy” option.

Some ofrepparttar 149520 advantages ofrepparttar 149521 “Buy” option include:

1) The time to get a package solution implemented such that you may start using it and reapingrepparttar 149522 corresponding benefits for your business is typically quicker than that for buildingrepparttar 149523 application “from scratch”.

2) The initial purchase price of a software package, although it may be considerable, is often less thanrepparttar 149524 (initial) custom development costs.

3) The software vendor may deliver regular maintenance upgrades torepparttar 149525 software package, including a number of “bug fixes” and/or enhancements, which you may receive for a “fixed maintenance fee” such that you do not have to bearrepparttar 149526 costs of all these “bug fixes” and enhancements alone.

Some ofrepparttar 149527 disadvantages ofrepparttar 149528 “Buy” option include:

1) A COTS package may not satisfy all your business requirements/needs and may not fit your specific business processes well “out ofrepparttar 149529 box”. The software vendor may or may not be willing and able to modifyrepparttar 149530 package to better fit your business requirements and/or processes and even if so, this may be costly.

2) A software package may be less able to quickly adapt to changes in your business needs and/or processes. You may have to wait forrepparttar 149531 vendor’s next maintenance release to getrepparttar 149532 changes you want, or you may have to payrepparttar 149533 vendor to make these changes specifically just for you and wait for them, or they may not be willing (and/or able) to make these changes to their software package for you at all.

Briefly here are also just a few ofrepparttar 149534 additional factors that, IMHO, you may want to consider in evaluating / selecting a package solution(s), as part of your “Buy options”, including:

1) What isrepparttar 149535 additional time and cost, if it is even possible / an option, to modifyrepparttar 149536 package to satisfy your current requirements/needs? A “general rule of thumb” I have used overrepparttar 149537 years is that … If you have to modify 50% or more ofrepparttar 149538 “code” to make it meet your needs, then you are probably better off re-writing it “from scratch”, you know?

2) Is it maintainable? Meaning, will you,repparttar 149539 vendor, and/or developers you engage be able to modifyrepparttar 149540 package to meet any changes in your current and/or future requirements/needs? If not, then this package may become “shelfware” should your needs change at some point, you know?

3) How well does it integrate and/or “play well” withrepparttar 149541 other applications in your overall application architecture? If it does not “interface nicely” with other applications in your overall application architecture and it will need to, then you may find that you will need to have these interfaces custom developed. Therefore, you should also considerrepparttar 149542 development of these interfaces inrepparttar 149543 “Total cost of ownership” of this package, right?

4) What kinds of documentation, training and support are available? And how good are they? Bottom line … a package you and/or your staff can’t use isn’t worth much now is it?

Etc. Etc.

Granted, again, there is a lot more to both a good formal “Buy vs. Build” analysis and/or Software Selection process, as discussed above, but …

Once you have narrowed it down torepparttar 149544 top “scoring” candidate COTS software packages from your Software Selection process, this along with your assessment ofrepparttar 149545 advantages, disadvantages and costs ofrepparttar 149546 “Buy” vs.repparttar 149547 “Build” alternative, as discussed above, will allow you to make a good informed decision about which solution is better for you and your business, namely to “Build” or “Buy”, in this case, right?

I hope thatrepparttar 149548 discussions herein will at least help everyone seerepparttar 149549 value (and potential time, effort and money savings) of performing a “Buy vs. Build” analysis and/or a Software Selection process “up front” vs. ending up with something that either doesn’t meet your (short- and/or long-term) needs and/or is too costly to maintain.

If you have any further questions regarding and/or would like further assistance with any of this, please feel free to contact us viarepparttar 149550 contact information available below.

I hope this all helps you all and Have a Great Day! :)

- Michael S. DeVries

Michael S. DeVries is the Moderator of The Virtual Consulting Discussion List ( and Principal of The Virtual Consulting Firm ( Learn how to work from Wherever, Whenever:

How to Never Pay a Hotel Phone Bill Again

Written by Jim Sherman

Continued from page 1

This brings us to what is potentiallyrepparttar greatest savings that SIP provides. We all hate to have to pay $2.00 for making a simple local call from a hotel room. But for those of us that have had to pay exorbitant long-distance charges from hotels,repparttar 149439 level of angst felt reaches new heights. Add to thisrepparttar 149440 fact that often companies require conference calling for their employees, a service that hotels are all too happy to charge a high premium to provide. For companies that have a lot of their employees traveling or practicing in various locales,repparttar 149441 overhead costs of making such calls can really put a damper on year end profits. SIP offers a solution to hotel bills, and for that matter all telephone bills whatsoever. Just as sending an e-mail is free whether you are sending that e-mail to a person acrossrepparttar 149442 street or aroundrepparttar 149443 world, so making a call using SIP from any locale to any other locale inrepparttar 149444 world is free. All that is needed is a broadband connection. And just as one can send an email from whereverrepparttar 149445 internet can be accessed, SIP users can make their free calls fromrepparttar 149446 office,repparttar 149447 home, or even (gasp)repparttar 149448 hotel room. Not to mentionrepparttar 149449 huge savings in regular long-distance charges,repparttar 149450 simple fact that long distance and local calls can be made for free from hotel rooms (most of which offer complimentary broadband service) is an enormous long-term cost savings. But add to thisrepparttar 149451 fact that conference calls are available at no additional cost, which can be explained by followingrepparttar 149452 principle that sending an e-mail to many individuals atrepparttar 149453 same time is just as cheap as one to one communication. Altogether these savings mean that companies who have inrepparttar 149454 past been laden with high local and long distance phone bills will be able to have their employees keep in close communication no matter their location for free.

SIP goes beyond this, however. Because SIP uses peer-to-peer connections there are no extra costs for having hundreds or even thousands of employees making SIP calls whereasrepparttar 149455 management costs for such a system under traditional telephony would be astronomical. This is neverrepparttar 149456 case with PBXs that utilize SIP in a peer to peer connection format, however, where structural costs do not increase as your business grows and your usage ofrepparttar 149457 PBX increases.

Session Initiation Protocol (SIP) offers customers of traditional telephony fantastic cost savings,repparttar 149458 flexibility to make free calls from anywhere inrepparttar 149459 world at any time, andrepparttar 149460 ability to expand a PBX system with no setup costs. Because there is no complicated hardware or software necessary to setup SIP in a PBX, implementingrepparttar 149461 technology is as simple as having access via broadband torepparttar 149462 internet. Due to these benefits as well as innumerable others, expanded use of SIP in PBX and in a variety of other settings is simply a matter of expanded customer exposure torepparttar 149463 possibilities of SIP.

Jim Sherman writes about interesting topics such as Mobalex technology.

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