Workplace Tech & Software

The IT Opportunity Cost of In-House FM Software

Nick Mason
August 16th, 2018

Building your own FM software might seem easy and affordable, but there are definite downsides to creating your own solution. Most importantly, it can generate a lot of work for your IT department—and not just during the development phase. The fact of the matter is, there is an opportunity cost that comes with building your own software. It might seem as if you’re saving money, but there are plenty of hidden costs associated with this approach. Here are some reasons why you should adopt an external FM software solution.



Creating software is time-consuming

In-house software won't have to keep updating

Even a simple in-house solution is guaranteed to take much longer to create than initially thought. Unless you’re developing a simple solution that really doesn’t offer much more than your average spreadsheet, you’ll need to dedicate a lot of resources to the project. It’s also unlikely that a developer in your IT department will have the expertise necessary to create a comprehensive FM solution. So, in the end, you’ll probably either outsource the work anyway, or end up with a piece of software that doesn’t truly do what you want it to.

In-house solutions lack functionality

As mentioned above, in-house IT teams are unlikely to have the specific knowledge required to create a piece of software that meets the needs of your FM team. Modern solutions boast loads of features that can help your company save time and money. While a custom in-house solution might seem more affordable at first, the latest FM software can provide a ROI that will eclipse the cost of the product itself. Moreover, since external FM software is drawing on the knowledge of a broad spectrum of users, it can often present innovative solutions that in-house teams would not have come up with. It’s more than just a software solution, in other words, it’s also a repository of knowledge that can help FMs adopt best-practice.

Reduce updates and troubleshooting

The job doesn’t end once a piece of software has been created. Even once a solution is live, developers still need to update it. They’ll probably need to work out some bugs, perform security updates and make sure that it functions properly on the latest operating systems. Then they’ll also need to assist users with password resets and other technical queries. In short, managing a single piece of software can be a full-time task that steals employees away from their core responsibilities. Modern FM software solutions function as Software as a Service (Saas), which takes management off your hands. You can be confident that data is secure, and updates will be made with no effort on your side.

Easier access for everyone

OfficeSpace’s software is device agnostic and available through multiple web browsers, so users can access it from just about anywhere. The software is even accessible on mobile devices, which results in a user-friendly experience that places information at employees’ fingertips, wherever they are. Being able to access information from anywhere is obviously a great advantage, but few in-house teams will have the time and expertise needed to offer this.

Adopt best-in-class solutions

flexibility and freedom to choose the best software in the market

Another advantage of outsourcing FM software is the flexibility and freedom to choose software that is the best on the market. Because FM software companies are exclusively devoted to improving their core product, what’s on offer will often be much better than anything you can build in-house. The teams behind these solutions know exactly what FM managers need, and consequently provide functionality that addresses core challenges. They even offer reporting and analytics that can greatly improve how office space is being utilized.


The opportunity cost that comes with creating a custom in-house FM application can be significant. Not only will an in-house solution require more time and money than you probably think, but the resulting product will also be lacking in functionality. While external FM software comes with a cost attached, in the long run, outsourcing your FM software will actually save you money—one company alone gained 18.1% in direct cost savings through outsourcing. Good FM software isn’t an expense; it’s an essential tool that helps you reduce costs and get the most out of company resources.

Looking for more benefits of outsourcing FM software? Here are some ways it can help reduce the load on IT.

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