Magazine / Agile Software Factory
Jun 10, 2021 11:15:00 AM

Software factories: 5 benefits for your business

Implementing a software factory within the company, with the contribution of external professionals, returns significant advantages not only to the IT systems, but also to the business users and in terms of competitiveness. 

A partner for the software factory 

In a fast-paced and ever-changing market, the modern enterprise requires flexibility and speed of time-to-market from the IT organization like never before. Rapidly developing and deploying digital services is the mission of any IT team, but in-house resources are not always available and ready to meet the new requirements.

The support of a partner, involving a team of qualified people in software development, app modernization, agile methodologies (such as Scrum) and DevOps, allows you to overcome the impasse, helping to generate value for the entire company.

The team of experts will enter directly into the workplace, collaborating side by side with the corporate IT department and business users. It will participate in internal dynamics and workflows, learning how processes are managed and collecting feedback from application users.

The software development chain is thus shortened, relying on specialists present in the company, with in-depth knowledge both on the company reality and on the needs of the business. The direct contact between the designer and the user accelerates the applicative time-to-market, leading companies to reach new efficiency goals.  

Choosing in-house development: benefits for the business 

Companies often find themselves at the crossroads when faced with the choice between make or buy. To develop in-house means having better adherence of applications to business needs, obtaining better control over software requirements; however, the needed skills and resources are not easily available within the company. Buying from the outside - ready-made applications or development services - may seem like a sensible alternative, but because of a potential lack of personalization may bring to critical issues not to be underestimated, such as the distance between teams, the intermediation times, and the absence of direct and constant support.

The optimal solution, therefore, is the implementation of a company software factory through the supervision of specialized external staff. This can ensure both development skills and strong integration into the company fabric. 

 The resulting business benefits can be summerized in 5 points. 

1. Technical skills and knowledge of processes 

First of all, we must highlight the presence of competent professionals, with continuously updated skills on design issues and experience gained in similar companies by sector and needs. The knowledge of software development is therefore combined with the ability to understand the specific business context, as well as to apply methodological frameworks and best practices already tested previously. The internal IT staff can, therefore, count on a team of specialists who follow the design activities, recovering time and resources for other tasks. 

2. Applications aligned to business needs 

The close collaboration between developers, internal IT staff and business users allows for applications that are perfectly aligned with the desires. The use of agile methodologies, the achievement of the final target through an incremental approach based on rapid intermediates, frequent releases and continuous tests to verify the effectiveness of the interventions carried out, further guarantees compliance with the expected results, increasing the quality of the software. 

3. An accelerated applicative time-to-market 

Thanks to the agile frameworks and the synergy between the various actors involved in the development process, the delivery of applications, corrective changes or additional features undergo massive acceleration. By implementing its software factory, the business can have the digital services it needs available much more quickly, increasing the company's productivity and responsiveness to market changes. 

4. To contain the risks and costs of development 

The software factory guarantees mitigation of the risks associated with the development process. By adopting agile best practices, in fact, you don't have to wait for months to get a new application or a change, but you rather proceed for frequent releases, with small increments (bug fixes, the addition of features or other improvements), which are immediately tested by users. Thus, in the event of an error or change of priority, there is the possibility to intervene promptly, stemming the risk of finding, after a long period of work, with a finished product that is not working or no longer meets current business needs. Therefore, the potential waste and additional costs of a failed development are reduced, allowing the company to immediately enjoy the benefits that can be obtained from small changes returns on investments in development are, therefore, much easier and faster to achieve. 

5. To promote innovation and customer satisfaction 

The software factory allows a better organization of the teams involved in the design pipeline, which integrate more skills to better identify the application requirements and process best practices.

The meeting of multi-disciplinary figures favors product innovation, with positive implications on the satisfaction of business users and, in turn, on the end customer. In fact, high-performance and innovative applications make it possible to offer more effective services, increasing business efficiency and customer loyalty. 

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