In this article, we explain the main phases of the software development process. If you are considering building a custom software project and need a better understanding of what that process looks like, check out the software development roadmap here:

software development

Now that you have a visual, let’s talk about what each of these stops on our software development roadmap means. Read on to get a better understand of the software development process from start to finish.

Discovery & Requirements

Discovery is an information-gathering process that digs deep into the details of what is important to a client’s business, target audience, and industry. The discovery process will differ from project to project, but the results are the same: invaluable information. The more information you gather, interpret and comprehend, the more prepared you will be to begin your custom software project.

When the discovery phase is over, you should be left with a list of requirements that allow you to step back and look at the project from the outside in and determine whether the benefits outweigh the cost and if you’re able to get what you want from the software you’re proposing.

Design

In the design phase, the requirements will be broken down further to be able to forecast the project’s timeline and estimate the level of effort and amount of resources needed.

During this phase, you’ll also want to identify any specific designs and workflows for the application. You may want to design specific pages and provide more details of what will be created. If the application will be data driven, you will want to discuss what database(s) will be used and create a data model. You also want to identify what tools and software will be used to create the application. Once the design phase is complete, the development can begin.

Development

The largest amount of time in software development is spent coding the application.  Once the system is designed and the technical foundation is decided, development can start.

The development efforts are typically broken down into sprints. At the end of each sprint, the client is able to view their growing software and give feedback to the developers. A good software firm will keep the client engaged in the entire development process, to make sure they are getting exactly what they want.t, avoiding

Testing

Depending on your project, there is a variety of testing that could and should be used.  All projects should undergo end-to-end testing and user acceptance testing.  End to end testing is using all the features and functions of a system as a user would. During development, features are tested in isolation but not as a unified whole.  Once all of the software is developed, an end-to-end test exercises the system holistically and allows the tester to compare what was built to the original specifications and any changes in design made along the way.

A user acceptance test (UAT) is a period of time where the client uses the system and signs off on the development.  Consider it like a final walkthrough of the software.

Deployment

Once all of these phases are complete, the client will be ready to launch their new software. If this is brand new software, it can be deployed all at once. If this is a feature update, just deploy the specific changes made to the software.

Now, sit back and enjoy your new software. If you’ve followed a version of this software development process and you’ve partnered with a supportive, talented software firm, you’re likely going to see your business objectives achieved with your new software.

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