This week I demonstrated our software to a national company who had been using an IT built visitor management solution for the past 3 years.
Some of the key issues they explained to me before the demonstration included
* System never had the features complete they were always asking for more functionality
* The system failed every week, sometimes an email or SMS would not go to the host other times the active directory integration just fell over not passing information through correctly
* The IT guy was always busy with something else and never had the time to support the product he was trying to build
* If the IT guy moved on, nobody knew how the system was built
I would not normally write about this type of situation but today I need to rant, we have had a few inquiries over the years where the IT department has decided to build a visitor management system from scratch. What has made me write this article today is a comment I have received from another customer who was looking at the visitor management system in early 2014. This customer decided to build their own visitor management system also. When I checked in with the customer some 12 months later they have still not built the visitor management system.
During past 12 months the customer has maintained a manual visitor management system with a visitor management book not providing the type of compliance that can be provided with an electronic visitor management system while waiting for the IT guys to build a system from scratch.
It is harder than ever before to find an IT job, systems, products are being made easier than ever before, IT guys are losing their jobs….so lets build a visitor management system…
Should an IT guy working full-time in your company build anything today from scratch? I think a budding entrepreneur who has several years of time available could start building a visitor management system but an IT guy working full-time, I’m not so sure.
It really doesn’t matter what system you need, visitor management, payroll, time and attendance, accounts. Unless you’re the budding entrepreneur who believes they will conquer the world in the next 10 years building the next best thing you should probably choose a solution that has been around for more than 5 years already has thousands of customers and has done the hard yards when it comes to building the solution with a team of dedicated staff.
Building an in-house solution gets you support questions and feature requests from the limited number of employees that you have running the solution. Building a solution for thousands of customers gives you infinitely more feedback making a more robust system in 1/20th of the time.
Daily feedback from customers is what drives future features for today’s cloud based solutions.