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Best of Breed or Best of Suite Software: Which suits your business best?

Updated: Jul 23, 2023

Best of breed uses multiple vendors to manage application
Best of breed vs best of suite

Best of Breed and Best of Suite are two approaches to selecting software solutions for a specific business function or industry. Each approach has its advantages and disadvantages. While I will present a summary with a bias towards Best of Breed, it's important to note that the optimal choice depends on the specific requirements and goals of the organization.

Best of Breed:

Best of Breed focuses on selecting individual software applications or tools that excel in a specific area or functionality. These applications are typically developed by specialised vendors who focus on creating the best product in their domain.

  • Benefits:

    • Superior functionality: Best-of-Breed solutions often provide advanced features and capabilities in their specific area, as they are designed and optimised for a single purpose.

    • Flexibility and customisation: Organisations can choose the best software for each specific need and tailor them to their requirements, allowing for greater customisation and adaptability.

    • Innovation and agility: Specialised vendors often lead in innovation, pushing the boundaries of what's possible in their field. They can quickly adapt to market trends and technological advancements.

  • Challenges:

    • Integration complexity: Since Best of Breed solutions are developed independently, integrating multiple applications from different vendors can be challenging and may require additional resources.

    • Higher costs: Implementing and maintaining multiple standalone applications can be more expensive than a unified suite, as it involves separate licensing, training, and support costs.

    • Potential lack of cohesive experience: Users may need to switch between different applications, leading to potential disruptions and a fragmented user experience.

Best of Suite:

Best of Suite involves selecting a comprehensive software suite that offers a wide range of functionalities and modules within a single integrated system. These suites are typically developed by large enterprise software vendors.

  • Benefits:

    • Seamless integration: Best of Suite solutions provide pre-integrated modules, offering a unified experience across different functionalities. Data sharing and process flows are typically smoother within a suite.

    • Lower integration costs: As the suite is designed to work together, the integration complexity and associated costs are often reduced compared to integrating multiple standalone applications.

    • Centralized support: Working with a single vendor for multiple functionalities simplifies the support process, as there is a single point of contact for any issues or inquiries.

  • Challenges:

    • Trade-offs in functionality: Best of Suite solutions may not offer the same depth of functionality in each module as Best of Breed applications. Some modules may be less robust or lack specialized features.

    • Limited customization: Suites are designed to accommodate a broad range of organizations, limiting the level of customization available to fit specific business needs.

    • Potential for vendor lock-in: Switching to a different suite or replacing individual modules can be challenging, as the organization becomes heavily reliant on a single vendor.

Bias towards Best of Breed: While Best of Suite offers integration benefits and a unified experience, you will likely have a vast array of technology solutions that will inevitably require require integration for complete cohesion and interoperability of data, systems and people.

The bias towards Best of Breed solutions can be justified in certain cases:

  • When specific functionality or domain expertise is crucial for the organisation's operations.

  • When customisation and adaptability are essential to meet unique business requirements.

  • When the organization prefers to adopt cutting-edge innovations and stay ahead in a specific field.

  • When the integration complexity and costs can be managed effectively by utilising middleware or integration platforms.

It's important to thoroughly evaluate the requirements, budget, and long-term strategy of the organisation before making a decision. The optimal approach may involve a combination of Best of Breed and Best of Suite solutions, depending on the specific needs and goals of the organisation.

For more software insight and support contact the Fruition team below:

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