One Size Fits All Software? Maybe Not.

September 26, 2012

by Erica Bell

Bigger isn’t always better. We’ve all heard the expression “Less is more,” yet sometimes businesses get so caught up in wanting to find a solution for everything that they don’t get the solution that is actually right for them. HR software providers are no exception. From payroll software to outsourcing software, searching for a best-of-breed vendor that specializes in one human resources function will often mean your small business saves time and money. Small and mid-sized businesses often find they can get big business tools without a big budget by choosing a focused software solution. Here are a few things to consider when it comes to best of breed vendors.


Going with a best of breed software provider often means more depth and expertise for your business to make the most of. Because the SaaS provider is focused in one niche, you’ll often find the customer support team more knowledgeable in that area and the software more customizable for your business. Some best of breed software solutions also come with additional features that aren’t a part of a software suite. A best of breed approach to your HR department might be a good idea if you’re considering scalability for the future. Upgrades are typically free and automatic, and new feature requests are often more likely to be considered than when dealing with larger suite models.


If you choose software that is directly geared to your business and needs, often you’ll discover you can save money. Small businesses tend not to need or use all the options that come with a suite system, but they’re still paying for them. By going with software that is focused on one area of their HR department, small businesses can save money by only buying what they’ll use, while still meeting their big business needs easily. Suite solutions tend to be more costly investments than a single best of breed option. Keep in mind, however, that choosing a number of the more focused solutions could mean a greater investment by your business.


Simply saying the software can be “easily integrated” doesn’t mean that’s really the case. Going with a best of breed software may be your best option, but you’ll need to make sure you can integrate the solution with the systems you already have in place. In the past, this might have been more of a challenge, but with the advancements technology has made to meet the demands of customers, more HR software from various vendors integrates flawlessly with the most popular business software. Make sure the coding is the same and that you can transfer information from one system to the next without a hitch.

While there are clearly a number of benefits that come from investing in best of breed software, there are also some drawbacks such as compatibility and integration. Make sure to conduct research into the software you choose before you buy. Many small and medium-sized businesses can benefit from software that is niche-oriented, but research is a must. The right solution, whether it’s all-in-one suite or best of breed software, will depend on your needs.

Erica Bell is a small business writer who focuses on topics such as HR outsourcing and business software. She is a web content writer for

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Brenton Williamson

Aspiring filmmaker living in Provo, working with great people at BambooHR. Mountain biking is keeping me from becoming rich and famous.