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Making the best “buy plus build” decision for your bank

Neither “buying” nor “building” platform components works on its own. Here’s how to get the best of both worlds.

by Backbase

Introduction

Stuck between buying platform components from vendors and building things from scratch? We’ve all been there, and it never gets any easier.

On the one hand, buying gives you ultimate control over your solution, plus the ability to customize things to your exact specifications. But it also often comes with hidden costs — like inflexible delivery processes and monolithic legacy applications — and few banks have the resources to do it justice.

Alternatively, building opens you up to a world of innovative possibilities and gets you to market at top speed, if you work with the right partners. Unfortunately, this approach sometimes results in “cookie-cutter” solutions that fail to stand out in the market, as well as significant costs due to vendor dependency.

All things considered, the best approach is to combine the two, uniting the best of both worlds while cutting out the rest. But knowing how much to buy and how much to build — that’s the real challenge. So let’s take a quick look at how you can make the ideal “buy plus build” choices for your bank.

The power of buy plus build

Think of it this way: in a competitive market, you don’t have time to waste building everything from scratch. But at the same time, you don’t want to simply buy the same solutions as your competitors, that’s a recipe for potential disaster — or at the very least a bland product. Thankfully, by harnessing the power of buy plus build, you’ll get to market fast with a solution that’s all your own.

By using out-of-the-box platform capabilities and customer journeys, you’ll leverage readily available functionality for up to 80% of what you need — allowing you to build a modern app on top of your core banking infrastructure. That means more time for innovating and creating value and less time reinventing the wheel. Just buy a foundational backbone with ready-to-implement, API-led, easy integration functionality to get yourself to market. After that, you can build a more tailored solution on top to best suit your bank’s needs.

Or, as we say, buy for speed, build for differentiation.

This approach comes with a ton of benefits, including the power to reduce technical debt, slash operating costs, and improve innovation power. But knowing where to begin can be a challenge of its own. 

In our latest guide, Innovate at the speed of digital: making the best “buy plus build” decision for your bank, we share expert recommendations and explore the questions you’ll need to keep in mind to get started. It will help you calibrate your strategy and start your digital transformation on the right foot.

Backbase: your partner in digital innovation

Of course, how much you buy and how much you build will vary from bank to bank, based on everything from your needs to your in-house skill sets. But keep these two questions in mind and you’ll be in a great place to start — saving you time, money, and effort.

And to make things even easier, you can work with a partner like Backbase who’s on hand to help at every stage of your journey. By leveraging the composable fabric of our Engagement Banking Platform, you’ll get everything you need to thrive — and then build tailored solutions on top to differentiate from your competition. We’ll help you turbocharge your digital factory so you can reallocate your budget from maintenance to innovation. And isn’t that every banker’s dream?