Top 6 Challenges of Custom Software Development


The Global Business Software and Services market was valued at $429.59 billion in 2021 and is expected to expand at a CAGR of 11.7% from 2022 to 2030. – Grand View Research

Custom Software Development

Planning for an in-house custom software development effort any sooner?


Here is a set of challenges that you may land while working on your software development project. We hope that this shall help you be prepared in advance.

Let’s understand the challenges!

Lack of Skilled Resources

Getting the right talent on board is the most challenging part when planning a software development project.

Skilled Resources

Hiring has never been easy!

Scouting through profiles, screening suitable candidates, interviewing them, testing their technical abilities, aligning them with your goal, and lastly getting them on board via completion of the due diligence.

What if they aren’t skilled enough as they claim to be?

What if they don’t stick to you and leave?

Besides hiring, planning for stellar talent acquisition and retention strategies is equally important today. No matter what size your organization is, it applies to all.

software development team

To tackle this challenge, the following template could be helpful.

  • Know your technology stack and the positions that you are hiring for in advance, right before you start scouting for resources.
  • Segment skill sets, years of experience, and personality traits that you are looking for in respective profiles.
  • Rather than spending hours in discussions, cut it short and have a practical evaluation test for the technical skills you want the right candidate to have.
  • Those who clear the test, take them up for a round of discussion and share your project idea with them and listen to what they have to say. Just listen!
  • If you feel the spark and a slice of innovation that this person has to add to your project, that’s what you should go for.
  • Create offers and benefits that can appeal to their expectations. Know that if you are bidding for the best, you should offer the best and nothing less.
  • Maintain a healthy environment, listen to their ideas, consider them if they add value, encourage them to upskill, and upraise them based on the value they have added. They will never leave you!

Infrastructural Shortcomings

This is yet another rock that is at times stacked against your custom software development effort. Considering the complexity of the software that you are building, it’s vital to have the required infrastructure in place.

software development

As we discussed in the first point, the right expertise is the driving force for software development. Similarly, for the experts to build compelling software it’s essential to have access to the right technology, and infrastructure to evaluate the performance of the software.

The problem is real and so has to be the solution.

In this scenario, you should get across the table with the software development team and discuss the way-outs. You can expect suggestions like the inclusion of assets and elements available online that speed up the development and save costs at the same time.

You can also discuss the scope thoroughly and see if features that demand higher infrastructure can be worked up towards the end. This lets you buy in some more time and see if the solution is shaping up in the right direction.

Ever-variable Software Requirements

No wonder requirement gathering makes it to the list. It’s still the burning pain for software developers and a legit reason for software development projects that fail miserably.

Software Requirements

Irrespective of the software development model that you are building with, it is ideal to have a clear understanding of what the solution is expected to do. Requirements should always be clear, precise, and complete if you want to build a solution that solves the purpose.

Yes, requirements may vary and a corrective course of action may be required, further. But it is advised to understand the complexity of the project at first and then decide on the development model.

Choosing the right development model solves half of the problem. You can have a set of requirements that are ready to be worked upon and there is no gap between the business and the logic being developed.

Inability to define precise estimation of Time & Resources

Resource estimation is a part of project planning. When projects are not planned well, they are bound to fail eventually.

Resource estimation

When you are planning for custom software development, it is ideal to chalk out a clear plan of action.

The plan should emphasize predominantly the following parameters:

  • What is the expected turn-around/time-to-market?
  • What is the ideal level of expertise required for this project?
  • How many resources do we need to complete the project in time?
  • What is the skill diversity required? (Developers/UI Developers/Testers)
  • What should be the ideal development model to complete this project in time?
  • How much time is required to develop the UI and backend?
  • How much time is required to ensure quality and performance?
  • Are there any options available to expedite the development process?
  • Are risks and contingencies taken care of?

With this questionnaire, you will have your answers ready and it would be easier to devise the time and resources for the project.

Poor Management Practices

If the software development team doesn’t have clarity on what are they trying to achieve, your project might take ages to finish.

Poor Management Practices

Direction is the most important thing when you are working in a team, towards a common objective.

A project manager or project lead is at the core of any project and is responsible for how the team approaches the project.

To make the project successful, a project manager has to create a modular-level plan envisioning the result. Each individual on the team should know their part of the responsibility and the repercussions if things don’t go as planned.

The plan should devise the end goal into small actionable milestones which will be assigned to individuals on the team. The project manager shall monitor the progress at periodic intervals and guide the team members whenever needed.

This shall help the team build momentum, and achieve the end goal by accomplishing the small milestones, one after another.

Communication Gaps between the Stakeholders

Communicational gaps can deviate the project from the desired end result and can be disastrous enough to lead the project towards failure.

Communication Gaps between the Stakeholders

When you work in a team, there are multiple stakeholders involved, and we can’t expect everyone to share the same bandwidth. Sometimes, even if there is no need to ponder in detail, it’s better to over-communicate. It makes understanding and processing things easier.

Software development is like a journey and there are times when you might have to roll back or fast-forward to keep up the pace. In such situations, it is of vital importance that all the stakeholders are well-informed and on the same page.

To avoid communicational gaps, all the stakeholders can gather across the table or conference call to discuss the progress. This gives a clearer picture to everyone and is a proven practice to sync opinions.

Closing Notes

When a leader thinks of custom software development, they think of it as an important business element that can help them scale and double down on their teams’ productivity.

There are certainly some tough challenges and even easier solutions that work effectively if used at the right time. We hope that the challenges and the counter solutions that we discussed today are going to help you ace your software development journey.

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We are a 21+ year old trusted Software Development Company based in Chicago with clients all over North America and Canada. Since our inception, we’ve been a software innovation partner for SMBs and Fortune 500 companies. Our team of professionals provides a full range of software engineering and consultancy services for both the technology challengers and the users of established technologies. And our expertise is in Microsoft dot net development, IBM AS400 iSeries, JDA MMS, BPCS and Custom Software Development.