How Pure is Your Model?

Will Price today touches on one of the toughest challenges any software company faces which is how loyal you stay to your delivery model. At Comcate we deliver (almost) exclusively software-as-service, but as Will mentions, we have occasionally committed "unnatural acts" to close a deal. Similarly, when a client requests custom development, we try to estimate the general applicability of the development (ie whether we could upsell the new functionality to other clients). If the general applicability is low or not on our product roadmap, we try to avoid taking on "bad revenue" business. Will concludes that "good revenue which reinforces efficiencies and scalability trumps absolutely higher revenue" and that "purity is a virtue worth aspiring to." Easier said than done… As Comcate has matured we have earned the luxury of distinguishing good and bad revenue!

3 Responses to How Pure is Your Model?

  1. Greg R says:

    One downside to custom work that I’ve noticed is related to version control.

    Assuming you provide a ‘patch’ to your core product to roll this out, the ongoing issues can be a bitch — every new release must take into account the ONE site running the patched version, or that client must remain stagnant.

    Another gotcha is when you actually do decide to include a custom request in core product; some clever (but annoying) user will invent some unforeseen way to use the new feature and create a whole new set of issues to overcome as future versions are rolled out.

    At least that’s what happens in our company…

    Damn users.

  2. Ben Casnocha says:

    Indeed. You should always try to bill the customer who’s using a special version for all the future expenses associated with maintaining the anomaly.

    All in all, purity keeps things much easier!

  3. Hmm… I read blogs on a similar topic, but i never visited your blog. I added it to favorites and i’ll be your constant reader.

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