Build-Or-Buy Software Debate – The Epic Conclusion

The build-or-buy software debate isn’t uncommon for startups. There are a lot of startup founders who find it extremely difficult to determine which option will best suit their business. So, if you’re planning to invest in enterprise technology, here are some tips for making a significant decision. 

Technology is a key element of how businesses operate and grow in today’s digital age. As per a study, 81% of digitally mature businesses credit innovation for their success. So, if used correctly, technology can be a powerful tool for profit and growth. Nevertheless, maximizing its potential still requires planning and strategizing. 

When it comes to business software, one of the biggest concerns is whether to purchase or build. Here’s a deeper look at the issue.

Build vs Buy Software Analysis

Evaluating all relevant factors when deciding whether to build or buy the software is critical. Various factors need to be considered, such as your project’s needs, upfront costs, long-term maintenance, etc. It is also imperative to consider how external users might interact with it as well as internal factors.

Keeping these in mind, here we have outlined the criteria to conclude the epic build vs buy software debate:


The most affordable solutions are always the best for businesses because costs can quickly mount when it comes to IT projects. We have witnessed repeatedly that things don’t go as planned. 

Approximately one out of six IT projects overrun their estimated timeline and cost up to 200% more. It would therefore be necessary to come up with creative ways to lower development costs.

One way to do that is by purchasing ready-made software. Of course, purchasing software would require considerable upfront costs but would offer value over time. Since it’s already finished, the development side is predictable. You won’t have to worry about the financial headaches of building your own software. 

The other way is to outsource software development. And it is the case for most founders, especially those aiming to build a SaaS (Software as a Service).


Configuration is another factor to consider. A purchased piece of software comes in the form of a template that can be customized to an extent. In addition, you won’t have to worry about errors since the template has already been tested.  

In contrast, building an application will require more costs. The deployment time for hard-coded applications will be longer, too, unless you have hired seasoned in-house professionals or an outsourcing agency. On top of this, it allows for greater customizability. 

Sure, there is a substantial cost involved in the process, but this investment will pay you great dividends in the long run as your organization grows.  


In addition to being easy to use internally, software should also be easy to use externally. You should build or buy highly usable software. If your tool is hard to navigate, how will you get the most out of it? To make it easy to learn, the design should be user-friendly. And it can be achieved affordably by engaging a professional outsourcing agency. 

Similarly, software should also improve the consumer experience, so tech must also do its part.            


Business security is the next area to consider in the build vs buy SaaS deliberation. It is especially important when dealing with sensitive data. Make sure you are aware of the limits of your access to information. 

Consider building your own firewall of safety to reduce data leak risk because ready-made software are the most vulnerable to hacking. 

If you prefer, you can simply restrict what tools you buy. It is pivotal to keep in mind that confidentiality agreements bind service providers. 


Lastly, don’t forget to consider your tech’s future in this build-or-buy software debate. This will aid to scale and roll out upgrades more easily if you have an internal or remote team maintaining your software. Having developed it, they can also design its scalability. 

However, there is a catch. Upgrades or bug fixes can take up a lot of your in-house team’s time. And if you are planning to leverage new technology, your team has to learn it. To evade this additional cost and time, several founders prefer to go with software development agencies in Canada. 

By using their services, a complex architecture can be dealt with by an external team. Support, upgrades, and maintenance of the software would be their responsibility. Indeed, ready-made software can provide the same comfort but to a limited extent.      

So, Are You Better Off Building Your Own Software or Buying It?

Most often, ready-made tech is purchased. Why? Developing something already available on the market doesn’t make sense. However, limited features and customization bar growing and developed companies from embracing them. 

Furthermore, it is difficult to integrate these solutions with other tools, particularly in organizations with multiple teams. Quality assurance ensures you won’t get to see too many bugs or errors. 

As a result, it’s best to develop your own software unless it’s a solution like a ride-hailing app. However, the thought process doesn’t end here. Understanding your tech’s purpose is only the beginning. Other factors must be considered as well in the build-or-buy software debate.

Here’s a checklist summary:

When to buy:

  • The software does not revolve around the business.
  • You need a tool that is cost-effective. 
  • Fast deployment is part of your schedule. 
  • A complex software development project is beyond your technical abilities.

When to build:

  • It is important that your website or application has unique features.
  • Your software is going to be sold as a product.
  • You have a specific set of feature requirements.
  • You can develop it at your convenience.
  • The project is in good hands with the right professionals.

DFY SaaS for Development

Looking for more information on business software? Or do you plan to develop your own software? 

You can count on our experts!

Our agency provides a wide range of startup services, including outsourcing software development and IT staff augmentation. We can help you build, launch, and scale your SaaS aside from replacing legacy systems. We’ll take care of all the nitty-gritty aspects of recruitment and management while you focus on your core operations. 

Schedule your Free virtual meeting today to uncover how our services can benefit your business.

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