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Stu Perlman
Monarch/USESI (New Jersey)

Is buying a $40,000 Canned Program to run a small business a good idea?

Here at Winning Solutions, Inc. we believe that in most cases it is not. When we say canned program we are referring to any software that does not provide you the customer with all ownership and source code rights. (Source code is the actual characters typed into a computer by a programmer to create software. Most programs you buy contain compiled code which is difficult to impossible to modify by anyone but the person who has the original source code.) You see when you spend $40,000 for a program to run your small business you may be spending even more than a custom program written by Winning Solutions, Inc. for your business would cost. When you contract with Winning Solutions, Inc. to have software written for your company, you own all rights to the software the moment your bill is paid. That means you can sell it to other parties, add more users to it, install it at multiple branch offices, have WSI or someone else change the programming or do anything you want with it!

You might wonder how this is possible. First, we eliminate all the features you don’t need and only program the ones you do need. Canned programs are a one size fits all solution. That is not great. It is bad because you and your users have to work around many extra menus and screens you may never use. This can lead to all sorts of problems, like accidentally mis-using a screen. Too many options and menus are one of the number one complaints people have about software. What if you could have a program that only had the menus and screens in it that you need? You can with a custom software solution from Winning Solutions, Inc.

The reason for this article is that we contacted by another business this week about creating a database for them that would allow them to track a specific set of information about their customers. When asked if they had any existing software, they told us that they had recently purchased a $40,000 piece of software to run their business. Unfortunately it didn’t do everything they wanted so they contacted us. While we would love to write software for them, we had to recommend to them that they go back to software vendor to see if they would modify the program to include the additional information. The reason this is important, is that you need to have as few pieces of software as possible in your business. Especially when tracking customer information. It is too easy for information not to be updated in both systems.

Today many people prefer hosted applications or mobile applications that run on phones and tablets. Winning Solutions, Inc. can provide custom applications that use these platforms.

So before you purchase canned software, be sure to contact Winning Solutions, Inc. to see if it is possible to have a customer program written for your business. When considering the cost of a canned program be sure to take into consideration the annual support costs for five years. Winning Solutions, Inc. does not charge any software maintenance fees. We only charge when you contact us to request a new feature for your program or a change to an existing feature. Even then you are able to approve or reject our quote for this programming. You will have your source code, so you can always take it to someone else to make the change if you feel our price is too high.

We do not charge for estimates. All we need to know is what you want on the screens in your program and what reports it needs to generate. Based on this information we can provide you with a written estimate, so you can decide which type of software is right for you. Please contact us today to get the process started.

Iowa Headquarters
(MIDWEST)
103 E. 6th St., Suite 101
P.O. Box 726
Ames, Iowa 50010
Tel: (515) 239-9900
Fax: (515) 239-9800

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