While all of us have benefitted from some software or the other in the course of our daily lives, have you ever wondered what goes into the making of that particular software? Software development is an elaborate, multistep, and iterative process that is used to craft a framework for both the technical and non-technical functions involved in building and delivering a quality software product. This process is better known as the Software Development Life Cycle (SLDC).
Let’s take a look at what the steps involved in SLDC are!
The aim of the planning phase is to create an outline for the project at hand. In this phase, the software development team together with the management figure out the scope of the issue and keep all the possible solutions on the table. The goal here is to identify if there’s a need for creating a new approach to accomplish the client-specific demands while considering all inputs such as time, resources, costs, advantages, possible risks, and other such essential factors. Since the planning phase is the preliminary study of the requisites and map for the process, it is also known as the Feasibility Study.
- Systems Analysis and Requirements
After the planning phase, comes the system analysis and figuring out the business requirements for the project. This phase is the special concern of the Project Managers (PMs) along with all the stakeholders in the project. PMs hold meetings with the client and other stakeholders to determine the specific business and functional requirements of the project such as “Is there a need for a new system?”, “Who will be using the system and how?”, “What should be the data input of the system?”, and so on. This is known as System Analysis where one analyses the pain points and the needs of the end customer and meet their expectations accordingly.
- System Design
In this phase, the entire focus shifts on designing the system and the software by delineating all the crucial specifications, features, and functions that can meet the business and functional requirements of the proposed system for the project. Here, the end users of the product (client) gets to decide on what special components – both software and hardware will go into the making of the product. It is the design phase that ultimately determines the entire architecture of the system.
- Development and Implementation
Now begins the real work – the actual development of the product. This phase is where expert coders and developers are brought to the scene. While this stage marks the end of the planning phase, it also marks the beginning of the production phase – the real coding work is started in this phase. Apart from this, the actual installation of the new system is also done in this phase itself, which is the implementation part. The system/software is put into production (the data and other components of the old system are transferred into the new system through a direct cutover). Once this is done, the end users, as well as the system analysts, can visualize the newly implemented changes in the system.
- Testing and Deployment
Once the development part is done with, the integration and testing phase begins. All the programs and procedures of the newly-developed system are checked and assessed by Software Testers who are basically expert Quality Assurance (QA) professionals. The aim here is to check whether or not the proposed system design is in sync with the business and functional goals. The testing process continues until all the bugs, errors, and interoperability issues are solved completely. After this, the product is deployed to the client.
As the end customer starts using the product, issues will keep cropping up from time to time. These issues need to solve as a part of the maintenance process. Also, regular updates need to be provided to allow the end users to optimize and scale the performance of the product.
So, these are the six elaborate steps that go into the making of the software you use on a daily basis. Now that you know all about the software development process, it’s time to spread the knowledge further!