What are the Risks of Custom ERP Software?

Custom or standard ERP software? I find that this is a question that plays a role in many manufacturing companies. Although custom ERP software often fits the company well, you can manage it entirely yourself and it is inexpensive, but there are also some limitations. More and more manufacturing companies recognize this.

The introduction of a new ERP system based on standard software is still a (too) big obstacle for many companies to switch to. From personal experience, however, I can say that practice shows that you should at least think about a possible change. There are risks associated with a customer-specific ERP.


You can of course limit these risks by commissioning a renowned software supplier to develop and maintain this customer-specific solution. These customer-specific solutions can then achieve exactly the advantage for your company compared to your competitors.

However, we often find that the customer-specific work is carried out by independent experts or employees in companies themselves. I present the risks that this presents to me in this blog.

  1. The continued existence of the business can be impaired and stands in the way of growth

In my view, the greatest risk of Customized ERP Software’s in Dubai is that it limits the continued existence of your business and thus prevents its growth. There are often only a few software experts in a company. What happens when such a key person leaves the organization?

Training someone new is certainly an option, but my experience shows that it is very difficult in practice to train new people in this area. This requires specific and intensive training. After all, you have to teach someone to make a tailored suit, and it’s not a craft for a reason.

Not only the departure of experts can jeopardize the continued existence of the business, but also (big) technological developments – like the change from DOS to Windows in the past – play a role. How do you accept new developments in software, such as the Internet of Things or big data?

Developments that enable you, for example, to enable machines to communicate with the ERP system? Nowadays everything is developing so quickly that it is extremely difficult to keep up to date with customized software.

Custom software may currently be a suitable solution for your current way of working. However, can you guarantee that this will still be the case in the future? In various companies, I see high chances that you will encounter restrictions. Why? Standard software grows with time, but custom software gets stuck.

  1. Advice, support and updates are more difficult

A second risk is that you will not receive automatic updates with custom software and it will be more difficult to get support for it. If your bespoke suit is broken, you need to go to the store where you bought it and hope for example that exactly the same button is in stock. In other words, you usually have to organize the customization support yourself.

You do not take this risk with standard software . After all, your partner is concerned with improving the software and optimizing and expanding the functionality based on experience from the entire market, also with regard to the developments mentioned above. And if you have any questions, someone is always at your disposal.

  1. It is difficult to comply with laws and regulations regarding security and data protection

It is not only technological developments that are moving at lightning speed, but also laws and regulations change regularly with regard to security and data protection.

Read also: Are you looking for Business Consultant in Dubai

I see in practice that companies that work with customized software spend a lot of time and money on finding a solution. But is this solution really sufficient and future-proof? To what extent are the experts fully aware of all laws and regulations? And if so, do you know how to proceed and anticipate this?

  1. It limits their possible workforce

A final, but certainly not insignificant, risk is that regardless of how you work, you are less attractive to potential employees, especially millennial, with an outdated, bespoke system. This group will make up the largest part of the UAE workforce in a few years. And they are used to working with modern software and apps on their laptops, smartphones, tablets, etc.

I dare say that custom software makes it more difficult to train new people and retain them. Millennia’s in particular have certain expectations regarding the use of software systems and feel that they are going back in time when a system is based on outdated technology or no system updates as mentioned in point 2 have been made.


Mark Luies
Mark Luies
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