homebrew, bespoke, or henry ford

I am having an argument with a colleague at present.  He says:
"No offence meant to anyone, but as a software engineer I do not agree with
adoption of any home-grown solutions, which is not subject to robust testing,
when there is packaged one available (where we reasonably expect there to have
been robust testing). "

We are in the process of trying to find a good way to manage student relationships – basically we need  CRM.  I have to look around and check out  some Open Source CRM packages to see if there is anything suitable.  We have a homebrew system which either needs expanding (functionality-wise) or replacing.  As you can see, he is not in favour of doing it ourselves.

After the very public software problems the university has had, I would never assume that packaged solutions are better than homebrew.

If you know of any good student oriented CRM tools, drop me an email or comment.  We are also talking about an internal wiki which might be sufficient (and is definitely easy).

3 thoughts on “homebrew, bespoke, or henry ford”

  1. We have just started using it as a learning management system and I guess we could repurpose it or write modules for the CRM aspects, but I am not sure it’s a great fit for this particular task.

    We need to track every interaction with a student – phone calls, forms lodged and signed, meetings, scanned documents, and so on. Some aspects of a student record need to be readable by all users (staff) and some aspects need to only be readable by groups of staff.

    That’s the really short spec 😉

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