A Buy Vs. Build Approach to Choosing a Salesforce Mapping Solution
Corporate and SMB customers immediately see the value of deploying a best in class mapping application like Geopointe, and some of the largest enterprise customers are even tempted to build their own custom mapping application in hopes to cut costs or increase customization. They quickly learn that mapping is not as simple as it might seem.
Here are the top 3 considerations we explored in helping Salesforce users determine what is best for their organization.
Building the application is only a start.
- The application has to be maintained.
- It must be debugged.
- Security patches must be applied.
- API keys and data licensing fees must be paid and managed.
Who has the time to become an expert on all of these items, let alone maintain them? I’m sure you have better things to do with your time than worry about whether you correctly applied the latest security patches. Maintaining an application like this also comes at a cost which we’ll get into.
The first thing you may realize is how long it will take to actually build it in-house. A basic install of Geopointe can be done in under an hour compared to weeks/months/years to develop a similarly featured solution. User adoption is another key component of the time it takes to see value from a solution. On the flip side, when you utilize a best in class solution like Geopointe, customers benefit from having access to a library of training tools and webinars that will help your end-users fall in love with Geopointe and speed your time to value. There is nothing worse than spending the time and money on building an in-house solution that results in low adoption rates.
This leads to the cost of bringing in expensive consultants to scope, design, and build your app which in almost all cases exceeds your original budget. Even utilizing less expensive offshore development, the time and materials costs add up quickly and escalate as the scope of the “simple” solution evolves and change-orders begin piling up. Engaging an internal team can be even more costly when the team is pulled away from their core duties and responsibilities.
It’s also easy to overlook the cost of supporting a custom app, especially one that provides international geocodes which are an inherently moving target. Like Salesforce, we update Geopointe several times a year, providing new features and functionality and also addressing Salesforce/Google changes that affect our application. In comparison, our app is updated by the original architects, tested thoroughly, and pushed out quickly and efficiently eliminating downtime for what typically becomes a mission critical application.
Even in cases where enterprises have highly specialized requirements, utilizing Geopointe as the underlying engine proves to be the best solution. Our architecture provides geocodes, filtering, routing and both browser based and Salesforce1 user interface. We have tremendous extensibility built into our mapping platform that allows the easy creation of buttons, custom actions to do cool things with a found result set, and a full developer-oriented API enabling us to seamlessly integrate with a host of applications.
By purchasing a well crafted AppExchange solution, made by App Vendors that really know and love the platform, you get the best of both worlds. You BUY a solution, but you can also BUILD upon (if you want to) to customize it to meet any needs that are unique to your business. With a native Salesforce solution like Geopointe, that is only compatible with the Salesforce platform, all of our time and attention is focused on designing the application to meet the unique needs of our customers to deliver a seamless user experience.
Consultants, can use Geopointe for free in their demo org, and end-users can trial Geopointe in their production org free for 15 days so you will feel more than confident to buy rather than build. Contact Geopointe for more information.
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