Cloud revolution and mushrooming of SAAS products today has led to democratisation of software space, providing real power to SMEs to pick and choose the best of breed software for their business needs. This new hub and spoke model is gaining rapid popularity and is here to stay. With business software such as ones offered by Deskera being the core, and multitudes of other softwares acting as spoke, supporting specialised functions.
Every software company worth its salt, provides an app store, where add on and compatible software are listed. This trend has caught up like wildfire and more rightly so. In today's environment IT managers make sure whether API documentation is available for any software before deciding to purchase the same. Software companies who are still to adapt to this new environment and who do not have integration infrastructure in place, tend to lose out big time.
This new paradigm has led to emergence of niche software players - who only solve part of the puzzle, working with the premise that someone similar will be working on other parts of the puzzle to make the thing whole.
To illustrate further, let's review some of the typical add on softwares which compliment Deskera Products :
- Email Tools such as Gmail/ Office 365
- E-commerce websites such as Shopify, Lazada and like.
- Cloud based POS system such as Vend POS.
- Messaging platforms such as Whatsapp and Viber .
- Social platforms such as Facebook and Twitter.
- Fintech companies such as Stripe
- Productivity tools such as Slack, Notion
- Remote attendance based platforms
- Mailing platforms such as Mailchimp and Sendgrid
- Document Management Platform such as Dropbox and Google Doc
- Document Automation softwares such as Docusign and Panda Doc
- Industry specific software such as software for clubs, for subscription billing and the like
Democratization of Cloud - Pick and Choose
SMEs never had so easy. Now, all they have to do is get core business software such as accounting and payroll from a reputable software provider and buy add on software from their app store.
Contrast this with the traditional approach where an SME gets a software customised and manually gets the systems integrated, which often results in a buggy and expensive system. The project drags on and on with no end in insight, eating a lot of their productive time which could have been utilised in furthering their business.
This new hub and spoke strategy helps SMEs to go live faster as it requires little or no development to integrate systems. Their existing data points residing on various IT platforms are easily consolidated and they get more enriched data. All the different softwares work in harmony and each handles a specialised task. This scenario wouldn’t have been possible a few years ago where an SME would be struggling to build a basic and a clumsy version of these software
SMEs are also not required to maintain expensive and bulky code. They are saved from trials and tribulations of technical jargon such as RFQ, rathring gathering, gantt charts, development framework and the like.
Benefits to Software Companies
Software developers also reap multitude of benefits,some of which are summarized below :
- Software companies can develop a more focussed approach to solving a part of the problem rather than building a clumsy and grandiose software that barely works
- Less development time is required as non core offering is outsourced. They can better concentrate on software that makes them money
- Reduced opportunity costs of developing features that are not core to their offering. Companies can re route these development man hours in adding more features to their core offering
- Companies reaps the benefits of operating on scale
- Companies become a part of a larger ecosystem and without significant marketing expenses, can ride on the success of other softwares.
In the Singapore context, Deskera Books is already Integrated with local banks, with Networked Trade Platform (NTP) provided by Customs, and Nationwide E- invoicing framework. Deskera is also actively working with Inland Revenue Authority (IRAS) to make annual return filing a breeze through standard API integration.
The choice for software companies today is simple : Adopt the new paradigm aggressively or be ready to be lost in obscurity.