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By Kevin Hammond  Posted on  February 24th, 2017  in  FileMaker

Why Your Business Should Use a Custom App

In recent years, businesses are realizing the benefits of creating a custom app for their organization. In fact, a survey performed by CDW shows that out of 374 executives surveyed, 48 percent report their app development budgets have increased over the last few years and 42 percent are planning to invest in new app development in the coming year.

This reported and projected growth isn’t surprising. Businesses are realizing that off-the-shelf apps just aren’t meeting the unique organizational and process-oriented needs of their company as well as a custom app is able to. Custom apps are helping businesses manage scattered data and processes better than ever. Furthermore, businesses are finding their investments into custom apps “already have produced tangible benefits by increasing efficiency, productivity and allowing employees to work remotely”.

custom application vs off the shelf application

Better Way to Work

People want a better way to work. Off-the-shelf systems require you to change your workflow to match the system and deal with features you don’t care about or that meet your needs. Companies build custom applications to work the way they do. Organizations that continually improve their workflows look to custom applications. In the State of Custom Apps Report by FileMaker, an Apple subsidiary, 83% of Citizen Developers said they “just wanted a better way to work.” These problem-solvers drive innovation and constant improvement.

More Effective, More Efficient

custom application roiBecoming more productive is critical for all organizations. In the State of Custom Apps Report by FileMaker, 82% of users saw a reduction in inefficient tasks. If you’re doing the right things, then doing more of the right things will have a powerful impact on your organization. Eliminating redundant tasks liberates your staff and the intellectual drain caused by double, or triple, data entry between systems, in addition to reducing data entry errors.

According to Small Business Computing, custom apps cut down on data entry errors by 71 percent. In addition to increased efficiency and decreased margin for error, businesses are also reporting a fast return on investment. After completing a custom application project, DB Services sends out a survey to customers and their responses state the ROI is less than one year in more than 75% of the projects. Once a custom app is deployed, small enhancements only take a matter of hours, days, or weeks to implement.

Better Insights

Businesses today find themselves with islands of data scattered throughout each department as they use many different off-the-shelf products. In addition, many times the data is trapped on a mobile device and/or laptop, and not accessible to your team in real time. Bringing all this data together becomes essential as organizations grow and work together in teams or across departments. In the State of Custom Apps Report by FileMaker, 46% say Reporting and Analysis best describes their custom app.

As Peter Drucker, the founder of modern management, stated: "What gets measured gets improved." The ability to measure productivity and performance is vital for constant improvement. Having a custom application that has the data for analytics is critical to gather quick KPIs and metrics for insights to make the best decisions. All this data available in real-time to staff also reduces the communication needs with co-workers and managers, saving valuable time.

There has never been a better time to build a custom app for your organization. If you’re ready to build a custom application yourself, start with FileMaker Training as we have many types of classes available for the Citizen Developer or Professional Developer. If you want us to help you with FileMaker Development, please contact us to begin the conversation. DB Services has been providing FileMaker Development, FileMaker Training, FileMaker Support, FileMaker Cloud Hosting, and FileMaker Licensing since 2003.

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Kevin Hammond

Kevin is CEO and Business Project Manager for DB Services. He also a founding member of the FileMaker Partner Council and certified in FileMaker 18, 17, 16, 15, 14, 13, 12, 11, 10, 9, and 8. Kevin is passionate about FileMaker as a custom application platform and is constantly on a mission to improve how he approaches each assignment.

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"We were actually able to add more features than we thought would be possible within our budget. We always experienced a ‘can do’ attitude and DB Services was incredibly patient and easy to work with."
Courtney Hartman
Art Director
"The new FileMaker custom website interface is very user-friendly and easy to follow for our clients. In addition, it is much faster than the old Instant Web Publishing (IWP) interface. Thank you and all the others who have helped us out at DB Services. I am very grateful for the excellent service you provide us. Its nice to know we can call you for help if we have an issue."
Wayne Capek
President
"We needed a solution that would simplify the administration of our responsibilities under our contract with the State of Indiana. We have seen a dramatic increase across the state in the number of potential foster and adoptive parents that have begun the preparation and training process. This increase has resulted in a significant opportunity for children available for adoption. That’s a big win for everyone! And it’s all because we can refer potential parents to the proper state contacts efficiently and quickly."
Chris Morrison
Executive Director
"Thank you for all of your expertise and valuable help. I am so grateful to have found DB Services."
Linda Findlay
Owner
"Thank you for our new database system. We transitioned from a carbon copy paper based system to a digital database. The software has saved us time and money. We used to archive all our jobs in cabinets, now we can look up a job in seconds from anywhere. The software allows us to easily email estimates to our customers in pdf format. In a year there was a return on investment just from eliminating the purchasing of our carbon forms."
Todd Cartmel
Owner
"The new system allows us to create and track jobs for customers along with inventory, something we had been doing with separate word and spreadsheet files. Because it’s now so intuitive, new staff members are able to begin using the database immediately without our usual training session and ‘cheat sheets’ for getting around within the file."
Tom Andrews
President