Aqua Bird Consulting was founded in 2009 with a vision to bring great technology to businesses of all sizes. Aqua Bird Consulting developers have worked in Fortune 500 companies building solutions that have generated hundreds of millions of dollars in revenue. So with all the money, why would anyone leave corporate life?
The founder, Khalid Abuhakmeh, realized that although some aspects of corporate life were rewarding, there was always something missing. Imagination and Innovation seemed to be filtered through varying shades of gray instead of the vibrant colors in our dreams. Once he realized that he could develop faster than the businesses could imagine, he knew something had to change.
Aqua Bird Consulting’s founding principal is to help deliver business solutions that make a difference in the everyday operation of the business utilizing that technology. It is that simple, we don’t believe in bureaucracy, petty interoffice politics, and huge profits at the determent of employees and clients. Understanding what we are trying to accomplish helps Aqua Bird Consulting deliver the best experience to our clients.
We chose Harrisburg, Pennsylvania as our main location due to the rich culture in the area along with its relative closeness to major metropolitan areas like New York City, Philadelphia, Pittsburgh, and Lancaster (because now a days, the Amish need technology too). We believe that Pennsylvania is on the cusp of a new technology revolution, and we hope to be in the forefront steering the ship.
In conclusion, we love what we do and we want our clients to love what we do for them.
This question comes up a lot when you run a technology consulting business. "Should I buy a pre-packaged solution, or should I get Aqua Bird Consulting to develop a custom solution?" Well the answer is: "it depends."
First let us start by explaining the advantages of bought/boxed solutions. Each client has a different level of compromise within them and their business model. If a client is a new business or establishing a new business practice, then a client's compromise threshold is very high. What does compromise have to do with technology?
Most boxed solutions are developed to service about 80% of all customers. These customers do similar things in their day to day activity and these products work great. In addition, bought solutions dictate behavior and actions with a predetermined workflow. Bought solutions can be extensible, but altering them too much can leave a client in a precarious position when it comes to upgrades and bug fixes. Finally, bought solutions are usually more economical and provide immediate return on investment. This means the client could potentially start using their new software within minutes of purchase. These are only some of the advantages of bought solutions, but when should a client develop their own?
Developing custom software sounds like a scary endeavor, but the aim here is to show that it isn't at all. Let us start with some of the perceived disadvantages of developing custom software, before we get into the advantages.
The first thing clients notice is that a custom developed solution tends to be more expensive than a prepackaged solution. This is of course the case because we are building something specifically for the client that only exists on paper or in their mind. Developing the details takes time, effort and a collaboration that does not exist with bought software. This adds to the total expense of a project and can be out of the reach of some clients.
The second thing to keep in mind with custom developed solutions is that they take time to create and mature into the expectations of a client. It may take a week or two before the client sees any kind of prototype or workable version. It could take months before the product is complete.
To summarize the two perceived disadvantages are time and money, or money and time; whatever is more important to the client. I will try to dispel these two disadvantages soon. So what are the advantages to custom developed solutions?
I mentioned previously that bought solutions offer a great product for 80% of customers, but what about the 20%? The 20% usually find other solutions, or better yet, develop their own. The obvious advantage to developing a solution is that it is tailored to a client's preferences. If a client has realized that they can produce more X by following steps one, two, and three in that order, then it makes sense that their software do the same. The client drives the direction of the software and can dictate changes as they see fit. Something rarely done with bought solutions.
Time is an important thing to address. Most custom developed solutions here at Aqua Bird Consulting provide business value within 30 days of project start. That means clients could start using an iteration of the final solution within that time. Project times vary depending on scope, but that is dependent on what the client vision is. Developing a custom solution can help curb training time as well, since it is a client's business process actualized in solution form.
Custom solutions are an investment upfront, but they tend to be what the client wants from the start. Where as bought solutions tend to constrain clients (some more than others). To break the constraints of bought software, clients tend to have to purchase new add-ons, expert advise, and custom development to extend the solution. After that, the result might not be what they needed. It comes down to whether the client would like to pay now for a solution that is exactly what they want, or pay later when they outgrow a bought solution.
In summary, their is no black and white, yes or no answer to whether you should purchase or develop a solution. We at Aqua Bird Consulting pride ourselves in being advisors to all manners of business and hope to guide all our clients to the solution that fits them best.
Over 8 years of software development experience in both start ups and corporate environments. He is always striving to be the best that he can through learning and teaching others. To this day can't explain to his parents what he does, but they are proud just the same.