It's safe to say that (almost) every business in the world uses some form of technology to successfully run their business. Be it daily operations, project management or accounting purposes, technology usually enables efficiency and competitive advantages.
The restaurant business is no exception. More restaurants than ever before are implementing technology into their operations in order to keep up with the changes in consumer behavior and gain competitive advantages in the marketplace.
We’ve been helping successful restaurant chains since 2016 and we meet ambitious chains daily. The million-dollar question we keep hearing is: Should we build this technology in-house or buy the solution from a SaaS vendor?
What’s our answer? Much like most choices in business (and in life)… it depends. We say, there are pros and then there are cons and this is our take on the much debated question.
The pros of building your own
- Endless customization capabilities: Function, design, billing – when you build your own solution you can get it to work and look the way you want it to.
- Own the roadmap: This ties into point number 1 but looks further into the future of your product. When or if you decide to pivot on your original idea, making that decision is entirely up to you and your stakeholders.
- Fun: Solving complex problems is fun and it can be extra fun solving big problems with technology.
But... Yes, there’s always two sides of the same coin. Here’s the cons of building your own platform.
- You are no longer a restaurant chain, you are now an IT company: With endless possibilities comes endless amounts of decisions to make. And we’re not talking about deciding on a salad or a burger for lunch – we’re talking about decisions that might have catastrophically consequences for your entire business when made wrong. There’s a reason software companies employ teams upon teams to make sure everything runs smoothly.
- Continuous development needs: Building your own platform is like raising a kid. Take your eyes off the little toddler at the wrong time and say goodbye to your new crispy white designer rug. Customer needs and the marketplace is changing so fast that what you built yesterday might be obsolete tomorrow. We stay very close to our customers and the Food & Beverages industry in general. That keeps us aligned with the market and we make sure we ship code today that will be of value now, tomorrow and years to come.
- Time: Indeed, it’s always fun to see all the amazing solutions we come up with combining strings of code. But having fun and having lots of time is a thing of the past. We’ve listened to fast growing restaurant chains, we’ve researched the market, and we spend day and night figuring out how to help you become the best restaurant chain in the world. At Future Ordering we’ve spent 7 years developing our platform so far. To sum up, developing great software for the restaurant business takes time.