Implementing an effective software development lifecycle helps you create high-quality software solutions quickly and on budget.
This saves the effort and time of the software development team and delights the customers by meeting their expectations. Software development is a large process involving many stages and complexities.
What is the Software Development Life Cycle?
The Software Development Life Cycle (SDLC) is the complete process of developing a software solution with different stages and steps to take the software from idea to creation, deployment, and maintenance.
It usually includes seven stages:
- Requirements analysis
- Planning or idea
- Operation and maintenance
Let's analyze each of them in more detail.
Collection And Analysis Of Requirements
Before you start working on a software development project, you need to understand what the client really wants to achieve with the software. The team must work closely with the client throughout the software development lifecycle.
Planning or idea
Planning or Idea With a clear SRS, the software development team brainstorms ways to achieve the goal. The goal is to optimize the software development process based on cost, speed, time, and other factors while meeting the exact requirements of the customer.
At this stage, the team must provide an estimate of the cost, time, resources, and effort to complete the project. It contains not so many technical details of the project, but an approximate idea of whether it can be implemented or not, and how. This phase also involves identifying risks and ways to mitigate or minimize them, as well as quality assurance planning. You can find out more here.
In this phase of the SDLC, the software specification is transformed into a well-defined design plan, also known as a design specification. Important stakeholders review this document based on product reliability, risk assessment, design modularity, timing, cost, and other parameters. They provide feedback and adjustments are made.
Developers take data from this document to derive a software architecture, which is like a software skeleton on which everything is built in the next phase. At this stage, the software infrastructure, user interface, and system architecture can be planned to ensure that all functional and non-functional elements are covered.
When the design document is ready, it is transferred to the development team, which begins developing the source code for the proposed design. At this stage, all software components are created and assembled.
Developers follow their organization's prevailing guidelines for coding and tools such as programming languages, debuggers, interpreters, compilers, monitoring tools, security tools, DevOps tools, etc. This stage is much more than just coding; here, the code runs on an infrastructure with a network and servers or on a managed web hosting platform.
Validating code functionality and finding bugs is essential to building a high-quality, requirements-based software product. This is why software development teams test their software and thoroughly evaluate all its components and modules after coding is complete.
Since software consists of different elements, different types of software testing are performed on it. Testers evaluate the functionality, performance, bugs, and errors present in the software through testing.
After the software has been tested and resolved, it is ready to be deployed in a production environment. It can also perform user acceptance testing of the software to see if it meets your customers' expectations by creating a copy and allowing your developers and customers to test it.
The software development team will take the customer's feedback, if any, and then improve the software. They then release the product to the target market for end users.
Operation and Maintenance
The work is not complete in working with the software for the client. It still needs constant monitoring, updating, and maintenance to keep it running at its best. And to meet growing user needs and security risks, new and improved features, and functions need to be developed along with security updates to keep end users happy.
In this way, the operations team remains vigilant about the software, constantly monitoring it and checking for problems. If they notice any performance or security issues, they need to be reported and diagnosed immediately to maintain their quality.
The Software Development Life Cycle (SDLC) is a complete process with various stages involved in the software development process. Each of the stages discussed above is very important, without anyone the work will not be completed.