Buy vs. Build: Why Sageflo Solutions Make Financial and Practical Sense

Over the years, we have frequently seen one team excited to start using a new off-the-shelf marketing or CX technology solution, only to have another team suggest that they build it in-house—often resulting in a prolonged stalemate and missed opportunity for a competitive advantage. The question is never about whether they can, but whether they should? The answer almost always boils down to which option, buy or build, will check three critical boxes: better, faster, and cheaper?

The end goal is to help everyone get on the proverbial same page. Just as we want to create a better experience, reduce friction, and drive ongoing success for our customers—the same applies to our colleagues. Hopefully, this will help generate some thoughtful discussion that leads to the truly best outcome for your organization.

Which will be better for the company?

The reality is all companies have specializations and should focus their core energies on investments that drive the business forward. If you’re a finance company, having your organization focus on finance-related challenges and opportunities, rather than building a niche marketing solution, will likely make the most sense. Almost all off-the-shelf technical solutions have years of research, engineering, and enhancements behind them. Oftentimes, it is better to tap into that knowledge so that your organization can stay focused on core mission deliverables. This is where all the teams involved need to unite on what’s best for the company versus an individual team.

Which will be faster for the company?

Most companies do not have the time to wait for an internal solution to be built when there are often multiple “off the shelf” options available now. More importantly, almost every organization already has many mission-critical demands to focus on, causing a new internal solution project to be easily deprioritized and delayed. Additional time will always be needed to research and plan before the first line of code is even written, much less tested. In most cases, by this point, your company could already have been up and running with an off-the-shelf option. What it really boils down to is: when do you need it, and will it be impacted by other equally or more important projects in motion?

Which will be cheaper for the company?

It can be difficult to do an exact apples-to-apples comparison here, but a solution that is already built and ready to go is by nature almost always more affordable in the long run, particularly when factoring in ongoing maintenance and enhancements. One of the core benefits of using an outside technology is that almost all updates are a shared cost with your ongoing retention as a customer. Will your company have the same focus and commitment to improving an in-house solution when new projects come up? Most internal teams are already over-extended, so going with off-the-shelf is usually a smart strategy to save both time and money.

At the end of the day, every team within a company is trying to extend their footprint and influence—that’s human nature. The key for everyone to remember is that quite often, buy is truly the right decision when it comes to better, faster, and cheaper to help drive the business forward and meet each team’s collective goals. This doesn’t mean there are no legitimate arguments for building in-house, but unless your company is in the business of marketing and CX, then in most cases the answer is clear.

We know these conversations can be challenging, and we’ve helped many teams decide which approach is ultimately best for them based on their short- and long-term needs, team capabilities, resources, and budget. We work with brands big and small and can help your team arrive at the right decision (even if that means going with another competitor or building in-house).

Not sure how we can help? Contact us to learn more or schedule a demo.

Posted by Julian Scott