When crafting a FileMaker solution, business professionals may arrive at a crossroads. They need to hire an in house FileMaker team, turn to a freelancer, or engage a software consulting company like Codence.
One of the hallmarks of a Workplace Innovation Platform is intuitive and scalable development. You don’t need a computer science degree to get started, and FileMaker offers an wide array of resources. You can learn through the FileMaker Learning Center, Custom Apps Success Guide, and the FileMaker Community. However, sometimes a project is beyond what an in house team can do, or you simply can’t find the time to plan, create, and deploy a custom app. At this point, you have to consider hiring extra staff or partnering with a FileMaker consultant.
There is a preconception that software development companies are expensive. However, the value of a professional FileMaker consultant team outweighs the cost. Here’s why:
FileMaker Experts – more people on the team equals more experience
You get the most value from your projects when you work with a team of developers that have been delivering FileMaker solutions for many years. Professional teams are able to draw on the knowledge of multiple individuals and consult each other as they make large and small decisions.
On the business side of things, software consulting firms see many different companies and workgroups. They bring perspective of how other organizations solve problems and make suggestions that your team may not have considered. They also provide a second pair of eyes on things.
The Importance of the Development Process
Simply starting a challenging project can be daunting. The good news is that consulting firms deal with complex projects every day. While every company has unique challenges, it’s true that mature process management can help minimize project risks.
A mature project management process and appropriate development practices are vital for the success of a software project. Without a solid process foundation, the project takes more time and has less focus. This leads to bloated costs and a stagnant project. However, good project management and structured communication allow you to manage budget, time, and scope.
Software consulting companies use best practices to guide, communicate, and clearly define roles. Codence offers our clients two ways to work: a sprint based approach or a task based system. Two or three week sprints are good for larger projects because they provide functional milestones. For smaller projects, a task based system is often all that’s necessary.
It’s necessary for the development process to cover all phases of a software project. While we’ve seen some in house projects struggle with requirements and development, it’s most often Quality Assurance testing that gets squeezed out the most. We’ve seen good solutions hit a wall with users because they’re at the “90%” mark and need more time with testing. A seasoned FileMaker consultant team has testing as a major part of their process, as well as experience investigating common problem areas.
It Goes Beyond Pricing
Okay, this all sounds great – but cost must be a real concern. This is the deciding factor for many when choosing to hire help for a project. While we understand the temptation of cutting costs, our entire business is focused on delivering high value. It is so important to consider that FileMaker consultant firms offer stability, experience, and less risk overall.
We encourage decision makers to focus on an apples-to-apples comparison that goes well beyond just the code someone writes. Well designed software pays dividends for years to come.
A FileMaker consultant company will be a better choice if you need to build a complex project or if your team is busy meeting other priorities. Most companies don’t lack for vision – it’s execution that trips things up. Having a starved initiative can drain resources from other important work and become a distraction that sucks away energy and morale.
With the right FileMaker consultant, you get a trusted advisor who understands your vision. FileMaker consultants aren’t limited to only developing services. They can also provide advice in areas such accounting, marketing, business metrics, and other expertise.
It’s important to choose a FileMaker consultant that’s a member of the FileMaker Business Alliance, is certified in current versions of the platform, and can demonstrate a track record of working with other clients.
Over the years, we’ve worked with hundreds of businesses of all sizes and in diverse industries to develop robust business solutions built on FileMaker. Contact us to explore how we can help with your next project.
Danielle is an Independent Contractor working with Codence. She makes things happen, driving opportunities for Codence by facilitating cross-functional marketing, branding, and growth initiatives. She holds a Bachelor of Arts degree in Business Administration and Marketing from San Francisco State University. On her time off, she enjoys spending time with her husband, baby Ben and Bulldog Boris.