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Can using third-party software benefit your company?

As software developers and firms look for ways to save time and money to create new applications, third-party software tools and SDKs are becoming more prevalent. Are they right for your business?

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Money
One of the benefits of using third-party code in your software is the monetary savings. The cost of developing software in-house by your team is higher than purchasing out-of-the-box solutions from third-party providers. Many times, staff resources can be better spent developing new applications than writing code for a toolkit that already exists from a third-party source.

Time
Creating new tools and developing new software is time-intensive. Many times, developers are under tight deadlines to improve their products and add new features for quick turnarounds. Responding to competitor upgrades, adding a new capability requested by a top client, or putting out a new release requires developers to be able to stay on top of their game in terms of the latest and greatest tools. Third-party SDKs and toolkits allow developers to access the newest software quickly, decreasing the time to market for their applications.

Finding the right provider
Third-party code libraries are everywhere these days. But just because you found something great on GitHub doesn’t mean it’s without risk to you and your business. If you’re thinking about using third-party code in your applications, here are some important factors to consider:

  1. Security: Recent hacks of retail giants like Target and Home Depot have put cyber security in the spotlight recently. You need to be able to make sure they SDK you integrate into your software comes from a safe and reliable provider. Do you due diligence and make sure the company you choose meets your security needs.
  2. Versatility: Is it the best solution for your business? Don’t purchase software that doesn’t meet your needs. The toolkits you use should be flexible enough to do what you need them to do, even if you change your application. Finding software that is updated regularly with the newest features will let your applications grow without needing major revamps.
  3. Support: Documentation, maintenance, stability, and tech support are all important factors when sourcing your third-party code provider. Does the software support your framework and platform? Make sure the SDKs you choose have the right documentation to allow you to implement the tool quickly and easily. Do the developers provide support? They should. Your provider should be able to answer any questions you have about their product.

The key to making third-party code work for you and your business is setting and maintaining high standards. Make sure the code you choose to integrate into your applications is something you would be happy to see coming out of your own department.

Accusoft provides a variety of versatile and secure SDK and product suite solutions for adding document management to your existing framework. Learn more.