Systems Knowledge – Seeing the Opportunity
Do you have systems knowledge and business knowledge that could be worth a fortune to you?
It set me thinking when one contractor said that he had written exactly the same piece of software for 3 of his last 4 clients.
He has probably lost an opportunity here to make himself quite wealthy.
Companies Would Pay for that Knowledge
Anyone who writes any software and gains business knowledge in the process, should ask himself or herself if there are other people out there that would pay for that knowledge. I don’t mean just in hiring a contractor to write a similar system for them.
The thing to do is, whenever you’ve written something, to make a list of other companies who might need this.
If you are in a particular sector, e.g. the Water Industry, then you know who else wants it.
If it is a piece of software that a lot of companies would want, you could then approach a distributor to see if they though that they would have a market for it.
Approach Larger Software Company
You could also approach a larger software company with existing clients who don’t have this piece of software. They could then have you as a sub-contractor. The bigger companies like to sell the whole package and then manage it, with your software package as just a part of the package.
The best thing to do, though, is to approach companies who might need a piece of software and then offer then the package. That’s before you’ve written it of course. The big IT consultancies don’t write very much software without first having a customer for it, and you shouldn’t either.
All you‘d have to have is a prototype.
It’s called proving the concept, with the idea being that if you can’t find a customer for it then it’s now worth writing.
Keep Intellectual Property Rights
Normally what they do is to write it for one customer but keep the Intellectual Property Rights for it. They are able to do this by offering it to the first company cheaply.
They can either do this, or licence it to them. The idea is that they wouldn’t charge them for the writing of the system. They would charge them an annual licence fee. The company would obviously have to sign up for a number of years.
If you can afford to do this, this is the best way forward. You then have regular income AND a system that you can sell to other people.
You will, of course, be able to get income from the first company by building in extra features, which will, at the same time enhance the system.
If you are able to do this, then you are well on your way to your first million – and you are unlikely to stop there.
Contractors should examine the systems knowledge and business knowledge that they have. They should then ask if other similar companies might have a need for this.
The worst option for them is just to keep creating similar code for each company they go to.
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