Building a software takes more than just simple coding job nowadays. There are so many stages that the developer has to go through, just to make sure a software is built according to the need of the public or to the intended end-users. Software are now more than just simple encoding and updating of information, it is a complex process without which business may crumble.
SDLC carefully lays out the necessary stages in order to create a perfect software. Developers realized that building a software is not all about answering the need but exceeding them. SDLC is now observed by different software engineers each of them following a specific model that works well with their talent and available resources. Each model suggests different stages in software development. The model suggests different approach in building software. Each model will suggest different sources and tools to build a program.
Every model or any software created that was built using an SDLC model has to plan before anything else. Project planning, feasibility study is very important aspect of building a software. It will answer the question of why would a developer build a software. Without planning, the software may not be able to perform or function as planned and feasibility study makes sure the program created is needed and will be appealing to the intended users.
Project planning and feasibility studies is a stage where developers, project managers and research department will be working together. Developers will be the group who will be creating the software, project managers are the ones who makes sure the program will be done in time and the research department will show why an idea of a software will work.
In project development and feasibility studies stage of the SDLC, software engineers and developers should be able to:
Identify the Business Value
Developing a software is not just creating a good software and presenting them to the market with hopes that someone will actually use or buy it. Before the software is even created, the idea will be evaluated again and again. This objective has to be fulfilled by the company’s researchers. They will be presenting the current market situation, current users need or World Wide Web that software engineers can fill.
Estimate Investment and Reward on the Project
In project planning, the investment on a certain project has to be revealed. This will be the backbone of every project. For one, investment will dictate how much the company will spend to create certain software. This is even truer for companies that usually hire project based developers. Investment will dictate how many people will be working for the project. Aside from investment, project planning and feasibility studies should show how much the company will earn once the project is created. If it’s just a tool for businesses, it should show how it can increase the productivity of the employees and its actual impact in financial sense.
Researchers or proponents of the software will actually show why the software is needed in the actual business sense. Statistical data will always play a crucial role in proving why the particular software is good for public use. Most of the time, researchers will be interviewing individuals in order to get their opinion if they will use if that software is available in the market. It will also take a look at the possible competition and how will the software be different compared to other companies.
Outline Technical Needs
In project planning, developers should be able to come up with the possible technical needs of the software. These are very important since without them, software development is nearly impossible. Within the realms of the budget, developers should get the best devices to help them in project development.
Within this stage, these are the procedures usually followed by software development companies. At the end of this stage, developers should be able to set the stage for the next phase of project development.
1. Definition of business problem and scope
What are the functions of the projected software? Who will use it? How will the company earn from it? The reason why the software should be created is properly defined. Developers have to understand these needs in order to create a favorable plan as a response to these problems.
2. Detailed Project Schedule is Outlined
Once the business problem has been outlined and proper responses have been laid through the projected functions of software, project managers should be able to outline the timeframe when the software will be available for public or intended users.
3. Project Approval
By this time, the projected software is not yet presented to the upper management. Small software developers may have to bypass this point since they will be the same persons who will be approving the software. On the other hand, developers under larger companies will have to present their ideas to the upper management. This is where you’ll realize the importance of management support for SDLC. Their final decision on the project will determine if the software building will push through or not.
4. Economic, Organizational, Technical, Resource, and Schedule
In this stage, everything will be placed on paper: the needed financial resources, the needed back-up software and platforms, hardware devices and even the project number of personnel who will responsible to build the software.
5. Resource Management
After the paper, everything written on it should be implemented. First and foremost, additional hiring of developers should be in place. Hardware and software components should be installed and tested. Support staff should already be in place once production has started.
6. Project Launching
When everything is in place, it’s time to get the ball rolling. Depending on the company size, project launching should be welcomed. There are companies who issue an official press release online and possibly in different media outlets. This will inform their potential clients and even competitors of the technological advantage of the company to create this type of software.
Importance to Project Managers
You may have noticed by now the role of project managers especially on this stage of software development. They will be practically on top of everything and even before it’s launched, project managers are already responsible to a lot of things. From time management to different resources, they should know and be informed at all times to control the development of the software. Project managers know very well that any changes in project planning and feasibility will greatly affect the development of the software, jeopardizing the project date of release.
Developers on the other hand, will be preparing as much as possible for the project launching. Some developers will be hired just for this project while some will be transferred from some projects to work on this new endeavor. For the next stages of SDLC, the ball will be in their hands. Depending on their output, the implementation of the software could be reached in time, delayed or better yet done before the projected date. Project managers will only become the overseer of project development, ensuring everyone is doing their job and beat the deadline for software launching.