Product Guides

Should You Build Your Own Document Generation Solution?

July 26, 2022
Author
Inkit Team

If your business needs a document generation solution, there are 2 ways to approach the endeavor:

You can buy document management software or build it from scratch yourself.

Which option is better?

Building your own document generation software vs. buying the document automation software is an important decision.

There are many factors to consider when thinking about the “build vs buy” framework.

However, when it comes to document generation solutions, as you’re about to find out, building your own document generation solution might not be the best idea in most cases.

Here’s what we’ll cover below to help you gain a better understanding of what goes behind using a document generation solution optimally for your business:

  • Do You Need Document Generation Software?
  • “Build VS Buy” Decision-Making Framework For Document Generation
  • When To Build Your Own Document Generation Software
  • When To NOT Build Your Own Document Generation Software

Do You Need Document Generation Software?

First things first, what is document generation software? And are you sure you really need it?

Document generation software offers a great way to automatically create, store, and save critical documents.

It is a complete process that involves drawing a specific document starting from its work order to the final delivery of the task. Every record in the whole process has static and dynamic information that helps increase work efficiency.

Essentially, this helps you with almost all parts of your document management lifecycle system. From document creation to legally compliant deletion or archival.

The benefits of using document generation software include:

Industries that need document generation software

Before we discuss the “build vs buy” of document generation, let’s briefly cover some industries that require document generation in the first place.

For a more detailed overview of how businesses use document generation, see how Inkit Render helps generate documents with a built-in security platform

“Build VS Buy” Decision-Making Framework For Document Generation

You always have two options when choosing the document automation software. One is to build the software according to your requirements. The other option is to buy the automation generation software from different resources and save your time.

Aside from obvious factors like time and money, let’s go over some other factors that influence the “build vs buy” framework.

Here’s what you need to know.

Total cost

Cost is one of the essential factors for making the right decision. 

Building the document generation software will cost more than the buying cost. 

So, buying a software generation technology is cost-effective as compared to making it. 

Most small and big companies prefer to purchase new software as it is time-saving and easy to control. Moreover, it takes more effort to build new software from scratch.

According to McKinsey, 59% of businesses going paperless with document generation software achieved full ROI in less than 12 months. While 84% achieved payback in less than 18 months.

Meanwhile, according to Uptech, the ballpark range of software development costs between $50,000 to $250,000+.

Out-of-the-box PDF generation
The easiest way to automatically generate and manage paperless documents at scale.
By submitting this form, I confirm that I have read and understood Inkit's Privacy Policy.
Oops! Something went wrong while submitting the form.

Risk

There is a high-level risk regarding control, performance, and completion. 

The building process has a higher risk. Therefore, many organizations choose to buy the software. They have excellent risk levels when you build the automation technology from scratch.

Therefore, buying document generation technology gives better support and dependability to organizations.

Scalability

Purchasing the software helps to maintain its scalability while working. 

They provide custom solutions for supporting the documents. All the small and big businesses find it challenging to preserve the scalability of their software while building it from scratch.

Time to develop

Developing the new software from scratch requires a lot of time. It also demands the skills and effort needed to build the latest software from scratch. 

So the new software has more scope, but it consumes more time, cost, and action.

According to Soltech, software development projects usually take between 4-9 months to design and develop.

However, according to a study by KPMG, 85% of software development projects go over schedule.

Depending on your needs, simply buying a document generation solution is going to be much more convenient, as far as time management is concerned.

Be sure to also see our full guide on document generation software pros and cons to consider.

However, there are some cases when building might be a better option after all.

Here’s what you need to know.

When To Build Your Own Document Generation Software

There are certain cases when building your document generation software is essential. 

These are the rare situations when it is convenient to build document generation software. 

For example, if an organization is looking for specific tools for maintaining your work and documents, it's mandatory to build one from scratch.

Some other cases of building your own document generation software from scratch include:

  • Unique idea: If you have a unique concept that stands out taller than the previous document generation software and technology. It is rare to build the new technology from scratch and build the new tools.
  • Different organization requirements: This is the common reason many small and big businesses build their document generation software. However, you can find the relevant software, but it is better to build one from scratch if you don't find one.
  • Cost: It is also the triggering factor to build the personal document generation software. Sometimes, the builders think it is cost-effective to build the new software instead of purchasing it. In general, the experts recommend that it costs more to make the personal document generation software and demands high-end efforts.

Now, let’s cover when NOT to build your own document generation software.

When To NOT Build Your Own Document Generation Software

When should you not build your own documentation software?

Let’s break this down.

  • As mentioned above, building a new document generation software might take a lot of time and money. While buying document generation software ranges depending on your needs and requirements. There are many different software options and pricing packages that scale based on your needs. For example, how many documents you’re working with monthly, your document security needs, and more.
  • Building your own document generation software is not the best approach when you wish to eliminate all risks of errors. Building document generation software from scratch has many obstacles and a high risk of errors. A single mistake in the software can ruin all the cost and effort you spend on building it. 
  • Buy your automated document generation software that helps to manage your workload. It helps to get a high level of scalability and reliable software according to your workloads. You can find the right software according to your requirements from many platforms. Different small and big businesses get their automated document generation software and save their cost, time, and efforts to spend on the other essential things.

How To Evaluate Document Generation Software: 7+ Questions

Hope this guide on “build vs buy” for document generation software was helpful.

As mentioned above, in most cases, buying a documentation solution is much more convenient.

But it’s not a simple, overnight project.

So, if you need to narrow down your search for the right documentation solution, some questions you should yourself include:

  • Does the system meet your requirements in terms of features?
  • Is there customization so it applies to your brand needs?
  • Does it integrate with your internal systems and other tools?
  • What file formats does the document generation software support?
  • How many users and documents does the documentation solution support?
  • What is the price range of the software and is it worth the value?
  • What is the vendor's service level agreement? How do they provide support?

For more information on picking the right document generation software, be sure to see our full guide on questions to evaluate document generation software.

Out-of-the-box PDF generation
The easiest way to automatically generate and manage paperless documents at scale.
By submitting this form, I confirm that I have read and understood Inkit's Privacy Policy.
Oops! Something went wrong while submitting the form.