There are 1001 software packages in the marketplace promising x, y and z depending on your needs. The reality is that buying an ‘off the shelf’ product will probably satisfy 70% of them. Asking the vendor to amend/adapt/change those packages in order to meet the final 20/30% however is nigh on impossible. So, what are our options?

1. Learn to live with 70% of the functionality required and adjust your working practices to suit the system. This will inevitably require the following:

  • manual processes ie. a ‘bridge’ between the system and your needs
  • additional spreadsheet information for required reporting, etc.
  • security risk of key data being ‘outside the system’
  • additional staffing to cover the shortfalls of the system
  • danger of ‘loss of faith’ in new system

2. Carry on looking for the ‘perfect solution’ resulting in a continuation of the inefficiencies identified, hence the need for a new system

3. Look for a vendor who is willing to adapt their offering that will work for you.

For those who have a unique problem, it will require a unique solution. That’s why Clockwork offers a bespoke software design service – to make sure that our customers end up with something tailored totally to their needs. If an ‘off-the-shelf’ piece of software just won’t do the job, for the reasons outlined above, you will find that there are a number of benefits to taking this approach.

Firstly, a greater return on investment. While bespoke software can be more expensive, it can instantly deliver savings in time, money, and effort to most companies. It also forms part of your business’s intellectual property and gives you the opportunity to gain an immediate advantage by designing better systems that distinguish you from your competitors.

Secondly, when considering whether or not to have a bespoke piece of software designed for you, is the benefit of scalability. Most off-the-shelf solutions can cope with linear growth (ie. they can let you do more of the same) but they will probably struggle with lateral growth. This may hamper you should you need to introduce a new product/service or enter a new market. The good thing about bespoke software is that it can grow alongside your business, offering you a truly scalable solution into the future.

Bespoke software, however, is not for everyone. It’s the Rolls-Royce of solutions and takes more time, care and attention to allow a system to be built to specific needs. But, if it’s the right solution for you, the benefits are unquantifiable.

If you are need of a unique solution and want to deal with a vendor who believes in listening to your needs, creating a relationship that majors on trust and understanding, please enquire about our bespoke software design service.


Changing your software systems is a huge decision for any business. To help you make the right decision we’ve created a list of the pros and cons involved:

New software is always more secure than its predecessors, because the longer a piece of software is on the market, the longer hackers and other bad actors have to figure out its weaknesses. With cyber-security being one of the biggest threats to businesses today (In 2016, 36% of all crimes were “cyber enabled fraud”, while “computer misuse” accounted for a further 17%) that’s a PRO you can’t ignore!

Software costs can fluctuate between developers and product versions. Some programs might include a discounted price for future upgrades, or you may have to buy the software outright, which can quickly add up when you have to upgrade multiple computers. Making this kind of bulk purchase comes down to whether you have the budget, which can easily dictate how realistic software upgrades are for your company. To overcome these hurdles, Clockwork IT also offers a rental option to its customers allowing them to implement a new system with minimal upfront costs.

How do businesses justify charging you for an updated piece of software? By providing something that’s substantially better than earlier versions! The latest programs will undoubtedly address previous flaws, increase functionality, and take user feedback into account.

Of course, while the newest software may be the best, there is no guarantee that you need it. If your “old” program still works fine, and none of the new features will be useful to you, why throw money away on an updated product? In this case, there will almost certainly be something better to spend your money on!

The bottom line is this: as software functionality improves, it should deliver greater gains in productivity and efficiency. Some companies could save thousands of hours of work with a simple upgrade – at that point, the question becomes one of economics.

While new software tends to be better, and can improve productivity, there will always be a “learning curve” to take into account. If the new programs are very different, and will require significant man-hours to understand, as well as major input from IT specialists, you may want to ask yourself: is it worth it? In other words, do the productivity gains you think you will reap from installation outweigh the height of the hurdles you will need to jump to get to them?

At Clockwork, we only roll out new software and updates when we know they can help to make your business more efficient, saving you time and money. If you would like to learn more about the software solutions that could be helping your business towards a more profitable future, you can contact us here.


Clockwork IT is proud to announce that we’re going green!

As well as reducing our own paper use, we’re also in the process of updating our entire road fleet to electric vehicles. Director Andy Milner is already driving a new Tesla, reducing his fuel and servicing cost by over £450 per month. Clockwork will be rolling out further Teslas across the entire fleet in the coming months.

While we are professionally committed to the ethical considerations around sustainability, we’re also focused on the practicalities of adopting newer, more efficient forms of technology. As our clients will already know, Clockwork takes efficiency very seriously indeed.

In the long run, sustainable technologies will simply be more cost-effective, perform better, and make life easier all round. You owe it to yourself and your business to embrace those technologies – and we can help you do it.

Clockwork’s mobile software solutions can help you become more sustainable as a company too. Our mobile software means you can send job data to your engineers remotely, helping them to cut down on the unnecessary morning commute to your offices, and shrinking your carbon footprint. At around a £1 per day not only is the return on investment obvious in terms of time and fuel costs, but you are also joining our pursuit of a cleaner, greener planet.

This is a vitally important step in protecting the planet – as of this year, transportation is the single largest contributor to the UK’s carbon emissions and is implicated in a more than £6 billion cost to the UK economy each year.

To join our quest for a more efficient and paperless environment, please contact us for an exploratory chat.


We’re here to help you make your life easier. That starts with being available to answer all of your questions. If you would like to know more about how we can help you, please contact us using the contact form below.