When the Fourth Option is the Best Option

September 23, 2019

I have often joked that when clients purchase DECISIONS that we were their fourth option. There’s quite a bit of truth in this though. So, with that said, what would be options 1, 2 and 3? Why would anyone slide down to option 4 as their best option?

Option 1: The Status Quo

As an Enterprise Architect, for any given IT infrastructure project this is always the option that any other option is measured against. Yes, your current process is inefficient, manual, managed via email and spreadsheets (___________) – fill in the blank here. You will ultimately be asked to justify any investment you make, so understanding the costs of the status quo is also your first step. These costs are typically measured in headcount (doing inefficient things) or in time (how long does the current process take). There is one cost that typically goes unmeasured and that is agility, or lack thereof. By agility, we mean how quickly can your organization respond to changing business conditions?

Option 2: Commercial Off the Shelf Software (COTS)

When organizations look for software to help manage a business process the next alternative is to look for off the shelf software. The benefits here are obvious. Instead of reinventing the wheel, organizations can benefit from best practices and can be up and running relatively quickly. This is typically a good choice if the business process isn’t core to your organizations market differentiation. How many organizations compete on the effectiveness of their accounting software? Every successful organization will do something different than all of their competitors. Given this, you won’t find standard software to manage this process and if you can – you might want to take a look at your strategy.

Option 3: Custom Code

Ok, so you know you have a big problem and there’s no standard software to solve your problem. What about custom code? Your dev team is chomping at the bit to write a brand new application from scratch. The only problem is that this is the same dev team that is supporting the existing application. Re-writing the application on new technology would take several years and would likely be obsolete as soon as it was completed. Plus, we all know the failure rate of internal development projects.

Option 4: DECISIONS no-code development platform

The DECISIONS no-code development platform fills the space between COTS applications and developing from scratch. DECISIONS helps organizations manage their processes that help them differentiate while allowing them to be built quickly and efficiently, often by non-programmers.

So, when is the fourth option the best option?

  1. When you have an inefficient, manual or time consuming process that’s difficult to change.
  2. The process is one that makes your company different from the competition.
  3. You want a solution quickly and with parts of the process (i.e. business rules) maintained by the people closest to the business – the business teams themselves.

If you would like to learn more about how Decisions can help your company automate business processes, contact sales@decisions.com or request a demo.

Gordon Jones
Gordon Jones has founded and sold three companies with the last built using Decisions technology. He has also led factories and large IT implementations both in the US and in Asia, where he lived for over seven years.

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