In one of my previous jobs in the UK I was a debt & welfare benefits adviser and we used an off the shelf case management system. The cost for running it was quite significant - we paid about £1000 (UK GBP) per year for only 2 signons. This type of system is used by advice agencies throughout the UK, including the Citizens Advice Bureau.
At CiviCon 2013 in London I gave a lightning talk on my experiences as an implementer and finished up by saying that my mantra with Civi is “No Coding”. This is just another way of expressing support for Heather Oliver’s blog about using the UI, of course. I spent many years as an application developer, did plenty of coding and enjoyed it. But….the bottom line is that Civi is so amazingly customisable and also extendable that if you can avoid coding you should.