The ability to innovate is crucial to the success of any business. And done right, innovation can positively affect both your productivity and bottom line.

The beauty of innovation is that it comes in different forms with solutions unique to your business needs. Innovating can come from streamlining your business processes through automation. It can be a part of developing more efficient ways to track and analyze data or by adding an interactive marketing platform that can help penetrate new markets and generate sales.

And the technology needed to support your innovation should be flexible, budget sensitive, and seamlessly bridge to your current system.

But small and mid-sized businesses may not have the resources to make the necessary changes to their current software and infrastructure that will support and reflect their company’s ingenuity.

So how can you translate your innovative idea into a software application that allows you to compete with bigger businesses for your share of the market pie?

The secret to successful innovation lies in developing a long-term relationship with a custom design software partner that can work with you by helping to create or maintain your company’s competitive edge.

When a new innovation initiative is architected, it will almost always integrate into one or more of your existing software applications. A custom design software partner will work with you to develop your vision and create a blueprint to successfully and seamlessly integrate your plan.

They’ll guide you through any challenges to make your vision come alive, without mistakes or redundancies that can cost extra time and money. And in most cases, they can move quickly to avoid a competitor with greater resources from stealing your idea.

If your company has a dedicated IT staff member, a custom design software partner can work with your staff and bring any of your employees up to speed. They can also fill in quickly if an emergency arises with their own employees.

Now it might seem cheaper to contract the work out to freelancers rather than establish a partnership with a software design firm, but consider this. As freelancers rotate in and out, they may not understand the history of your software applications. Often times, the business owner has the challenge of keeping the software and infrastructure records and relating them to the new contractor every time. A good design firm using best practices maintains up to date records and can quickly provide orientation and training whenever needed.

The freelancer will probably require time to learn the programming behind the application they’re working with before they can move forward with any new programming. They won’t know the interdependencies without your guidance, and as such may not be able to provide in-depth design recommendations that will make your innovation a true competitive differentiator. But since a software design partner has a history with you, if they are good, their recommendations will be spot on.

Any of these scenarios can cause confusion and risk derailing or delaying your project, not to mention creating potential software issues in the future, and reducing the positive impact of your innovation.

As a business owner, you have a unique perspective on how to serve the needs of your clients that can result in higher productivity, increased revenue, improve customer satisfaction and more. Working with a custom software design partner fills the gap between your desire and actual bandwidth on a per project basis. This allows you to quickly ramp resources up and down leaving you and your staff free to innovate and focus on your core products and growth goals.

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