Open source is a philosophy that the software industry has adopted over the past decades to great success. In 2021 the whole internet infrastructure is built on open-source software and developed by contributors. It is a fact that many people tend to look over, and they choose proprietary business management software. Even the most budget-conscious small businesses are paying hundreds of dollars on subscription fees!! When they could be paying zero. This article busts some myths about open source software and why you should adopt it today.
Myth 1 : Spending money= good
Most small business owners always argue that it means the software is just better because it’s paid. But, in many cases, yes, technically, a paid small business management software is better; however, it’s more complicated.
Open-source software may not be comparable apples to apples; it doesn’t change that they are free. There is a psychological tendency at play here that may be more subconscious. In many experiments, open-source projects have portrayed that their project is paid. The minute they experimented, they saw that more and more people donated money for it.
Open source is often undermined because of psychology and why small companies are failing to save huge money.
It is free and is comparable to proprietary software.
There are many open-source counterparts to the business management software. The key feature that makes them stand out are –
They follow open standards-
Software companies in the past few years have been heavily invested in building walled gardens. It means that if you buy a suit or software package, more often than not, you’re stuck in it.
There is no way for companies to transition out of the lock hold, and they are stuck paying high fees. It is especially bad for small companies that have to give away a chunk of their revenue. Following open standards ensure you are not locked into a paying model.
Have a strong community around it-
the biggest rebuttal to shifting to open source is often what about support? I have a small business management software toolset and need assistance. It is an understandable fear, but the fact of the matter is that support around these projects is extremely strong.
Most software support is fairly rudimentary, and they give you the standard shlock. Unless you’re paying a huge amount, you will not meet a software developer for solutions. On the other hand, the open-source community is often more dedicated, and by typing in a terminal application, you can solve software bugs.
You can modify them-
A business management software that you license cannot be adapted or modified for your needs. Once you buy a product, you’re stuck with it for better or worse. With open-source, you can adapt the software to your very own specific needs. Hire a software developer that can make the necessary changes for you. It will be a one-time cost, and one can feel the benefits for years.
Myth 2:The open-source software is inferior.
It’s quite the opposite, as people cannot go through their day without interacting with open-source software. The GNU/Linux platform is the most powerful software in the world-.
Some of the examples where Linux is used is-
- The android platform runs a billion mobile phones.
- Most of the world’s fastest supercomputers in the world.
- It runs on Raspberry PI- 35 dollar enthusiast computer kit.
- Most of the internet infrastructure runs on Linux as its foundation.
Here’s a suite of open source apps that are free business management software–
- LibreOffice(Office Suite): This office program has been downloaded by more than 400 million users and has saved millions of dollars for communities.
- GnuCash(accounting): This open-source accounting software is feature-rich and ensures maximum security. The best part is that it is available in all the major operating systems.
- Elementary OS(Operating Systems): Choosing a Linux distro is a matter of preference on the UI and technical factors. One of the most user-friendly and extremely stable operating systems is Elementary Os. If you’re coming from windows, it might feel like a huge departure, but for mac users, it’s an easy fit.
There are many other categories to explore, but these three are core software that every business uses. Shifting small business management software systems might feel steep, but the savings alone make it worth the effort.
Ultimately the toolset is just an extension of the talent, and it is the people who build a company. However, to push them to their top efficiency and the company’s financial efficiency, tools do matter. Open source tools are reliable and feature-rich, but they make sense for a company looking for growth. It is tempting to splurge on slightly better software, but it often isn’t worth it. Sometimes going off the road that is less traveled is more rewarding than one that everyone takes.