When improving your current business or campus operations, navigating the complex landscape of new technology, software, and hardware solutions can be challenging. One area that can cause stress or uncertainty in decision-making is choosing between a software platform or a point solution. Now, you may have done months of research, or you may not have the slightest clue on the differences between the two. Regardless, our team is here to shed some light on these differences, and help you make the best decision for your business or university. Here, our team of facilities and campus logistics software experts at SCLogic discuss the major differences between software platforms and point solutions and provide detailed insights on which solution may suit your team best.
Overview of Software Platforms vs. Point Solutions
If you are new to the operations software realm, or just want a deeper understanding of your solution options, let us break down the main differences between software platforms and point solutions for you. Two of the major differences between the two occur in flexibility and scalability. Software platforms are generally designed to provide a broader or all-encompassing solution to solve multiple pain points that your business currently has. Point solutions, as the name states, pinpoints or targets a specific problem that your business is trying to solve. While both are created to find solutions in the operations and logistics fields, software platforms provide multiple, less targeted solutions, while point solutions are used for single-use cases. If your business or campus is working toward a single goal, and relatively new to the operations software realm, a point solution may be beneficial, to begin with. However, if your team is looking for a scalable, flexible option with immense growth potential (which let’s be honest, who wouldn’t be), we recommend considering a larger-scale platform solution. Look, we may be a little biased, but we also have over a quarter-century of experience in the facilities and campus logistics sectors. Let our team get your gears turning and provide some insights into the pros and cons of platforms vs. point solutions.
Are You Looking for Quick Implementation?
When you’re looking for a new platform or point solution to implement, one of the first questions both you and your department might ask is how quickly this can be implemented. In the age of Amazon Prime and almost immediate gratification, the tech and operations industry has struggled to keep up with these ever-growing consumer demands. It’s important to note that fast implementation does not always correlate with a successful product and that taking the time to ensure your software platform or point solution is implemented correctly will help your team in the long run.
Note that ROI and implementation times do not adjust based on if you’re purchasing a platform or a point solution, but rather the vendor that you are working with. Each company has different standards for implementation depending on the size of its solution or platform. While it can be understandable that implementing an entire software platform may take more time, any additional point solutions you need will require you to start the implementation process all over again, and if your solutions are created by different companies, the employee retention and adoption process can be even lengthier. Ultimately, taking the time upfront to implement a software platform will allow your team ample time to get acclimated to new technology, and in time become extremely knowledgeable of your software capabilities, decreasing time spent on daily tasks and allowing employees to guide one another in usage.
Are You Looking for a Scalable Solution?
Scalability is a huge consideration for any business or campus, and when it comes to choosing between a platform and a point solution, there are key differences in their abilities. Because point solutions are catered toward a specific problem, their level of scalability is lower, making it more difficult to fulfill your long-term business or campus needs. For example, office or university asset managers may be able to scale the number of assets they are tracking within their facility but wouldn’t be able to have a comprehensive overview of asset distribution or surplus throughout departments. Additionally, point solutions may be scalable in some capacities, but not configurable or scalable with others. This leaves your team frustrated each time you attempt to use new functionality in your point solution. For software platforms, however, scalability comes with the territory. At SCLogic, our Intra Enterprise and EDU software were created to serve customers of all sizes, keeping your growing business thriving. From small private universities to huge Fortune 500 corporations, our software can scale to exceed your needs.
Are You Looking for Comprehensive & User-Friendly Functionality?
Outside of scalability, the functionality of your platform or point solution is a top consideration for many decision-makers. While point solutions may be created to be user-friendly and functional, this functionality only goes so far. Often, point solutions fall short in their ability to integrate with other products, and if you do not do thorough research prior to implementation, you may find yourself trying to fit a square peg in a round hole when it comes to integrating your department’s technology. This issue only continues to grow when you implement multiple point solutions, as each vendor may have different customer service, monitoring, and reporting. Thus, your team will be spending excessive time gathering data through each individual point solution and may find frustration in customer service gaps.
Where software platforms differ in this sense is their ability to provide an all-encompassing solution for your business. When choosing a software platform, all the functionality you need will be provided by one organization. This alleviates the many pain points companies face as they try to navigate complex maintenance for different point solutions, as well as inconsistencies in reporting and data collection. Gone are the days where your team must transfer data from five point solutions into a single database, leaving ample room for human error. Instead, this will be replaced with a comprehensive and user-friendly analytics dashboard, with configurable workflows that suit your team’s unique needs.
Let Our Team Help You Find the Perfect Platform Solution
To summarize the platform vs. point solution debate, there is no question that point solutions provide a level of expertise for specific problems your organization may face and may be a more affordable option upfront. However, investing in a software platform provides a myriad of long-term benefits for your team, that of which point solutions can’t compete. Software platforms integrate each functionality you desire into one space, and when you choose the right one (which we have an idea of who that might be), you receive unmatched customer support to ensure that your team continues to flourish. Platform solutions such as Intra provide your organization with configurable operations solutions that seamlessly integrate with one another, were created with innovation in mind, and will continue to be improved upon based on industry feedback from our customers. If you’re interested in learning more about our facilities workflow platform, Intra, email [email protected] for more information, or schedule a demo with one of our team members today!