4 Ways Internal Isn’t Always Better

By Derek Scott

Mar 29th 2018

Why would you hire someone to fix your tractor when you can do it perfectly fine on your own? Often maintenance to a tractor is a routine job. But what happens when you are fixing a new problem you haven’t solved before? How many additional trips does it take to the hardware store for just the right part? What could go wrong? If you’ve found yourself in this situation, you may be able to attest that in fact, a great number of things can go wrong. Or best case scenario, nothing goes wrong per say, but nothing gets better. While these factors hold true for on-the-farm  mechanic fixes, it resonates within your grain elevator’s software solution.

Your team of experts excel at their fields of expertise. When it comes to their jobs and skill sets, they know what needs to be improved and what needs to be fixed. Creating an automated software solution demands new skills, and introduces new challenges for your staff that may conflict with their skill set. More importantly, a large project divides resources between their original work load and the new project. This often results in teams “winging it” and developing a short-term solution which is unsustainable overtime.  able to handle the seriously daunting and crucial task of creating an automated software solution for your elevator operation and your farmers, it just isn’t enough to “wing it.” Software is a fluid, evolving, and scary smart beast that demands the best of experts to wrangle and tame it. Going the internal route can be the answer for a number of problems to be solved, but when it comes to something that may make or break your operation, you need to go with the experts.

Still not convinced? Here are four legitimate ways going the external route for your elevator’s software solution is the way to go.

1. Knowledge

For the same reason that people seek out the help of professionals for problems they don’t know how to handle confidently themselves, you rely on a software company rooted in their expertise and craft. By investing in the help of a professional team of software developers, designers, and strategists, you get more than what you initially came in for. Your problem is solved, and you have a partner who now is well-read about you and your unique business problem. Two heads are better than one and all that.

2. Money

The main reason clients tend to resource within their internal teams stem from the fairytale idea that they will save money this way. Not necessarily. Unless you have an experienced, fluent, and seriously diverse stream of talent within your elevator-coop operation, you’re not going to save bucks. Here’s why. When you rely on a one-man IT department to eloquently craft agile, bug-and-error-proof software to keep you ahead of competitors, you will be severely let down. It just doesn’t work this way. By pursuing this limited, internal route, you end up spending tons and tons of money on one person who likely doesn’t have the tools, knowledge, or resources to get the job done. Save money and do it right the first time.

3. Time

There’s a reason companies often are not made up of one person. Time. How can one accomplish everyday tasks that need to get done, in combination of architecting long-term strategy plans? It’s not easy, and definitely stressful. This scenario coincides with many elevators and cooperatives’ operations. When a technology team is limited to one or two resources, the amount of work that piles up can quickly turn into an unmanageable, never ending to-do list. In the software industry, no program is set in store. Daily upkeep, updates, and trouble-shooting are unavoidable software needs that require vigile attention. This dedication to current software health leaves little to no room for the creation of better and new software. While wishing for more hours in a day may be a start, trusting a team of experts will get you further.

4. Sustainability

The long haul. The end game. The “one.” When thinking of your software solution, think these phrases. Software is an investment. It’s not cheap to make, and it’s not cheap to keep. When you make the necessary decision to implement a software solution for you operation, you need to think of the long run. While a fast and cheap option may be enticing, this is a short term win. To win the war, you need an army of impassioned and skilled professionals to have your back. When going with external software professionals, you set yourself up for a restful night’s sleep. Never worry about your stretched dollars hitting a wall way too fast. With a seasoned team of software enthusiasts, you sleep easy knowing the software you spent good money on is in healthy shape.

The Lesson

It can be convenient to go with an internal team, but not necessarily the best choice in a number of areas. When you think of providing a software solution to simplify and automate your elevator operation, you have a lot of factors to consider. At the end of it all, your growers’ success is the first thing to come to mind. Don’t leave that on the line. Pick peace of mind by picking the right external team.

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