Business Benefits of Custom Software Development

All businesses and organisations will typically need some form of software during their lifecycle. The types of software utilised by most companies range from applications that will enable better management of key organisational functions – Human Resources, Finances and Accounts, inventory and stock and even running projects, to more specific items of software that have a key purpose such as Content Management Software for use on company websites. Although these software applications can be purchased “off the shelf”, there are many business benefits that can be associated with choosing custom software development.

Custom Software Development is created for you

Developing custom software is a bespoke, made to measure process, which means that any applications and software programmes created as a result of the process will be entirely made for your company and its individual needs and requirements. Basically, a piece of custom made software is flexible and has the potential to fulfil your specifications meaning that it is easy to use and can be deployed throughout your entire organisation. Instead of having to make do with a ready made software programme or application, with customised software you can be sure that what you will receive will be entirely fit for purpose. There are also significant financial benefits that can be associated with custom made software despite it costing a little more to purchase than off the shelf packages. Software applications that have been made for you don’t require any licence fees, so you can distribute them across your entire organisation without needing to pay extra.

Custom Software Developers will work with your Company

When creating software designed for your company, custom software developers will design and code it to integrate properly within your organisation. The software won’t just help you achieve what you need it to achieve, it will be rich in features and tools that will make it usable by the people who will be operating it. With a piece of custom software all the requirements of your company will be considered, and developers will meet these both in the way that they develop the software and the after care that they provide properly. Although some training and support is available with off the shelf software to a certain extent, with custom made software your developers will continue to work with and support your company whether that’s through training staff members in the use of the software or providing maintenance and technical help to remedy any errors that might occur in the software.

Customised Software is Safe and Secure

The ready made software packages available to businesses and organisations today are certainly a lot more secure than the ones that have been developed in previous years, however they don’t compare to the security levels of customised software. Because customised software has been created for your company it will only be usable by individuals in your company. When you purchase custom software you will be given administrator rights to the software ensuring that you can change and alter user profiles and passwords to be in accordance with your own internal data protection policies. Customised software used on the web is also a lot harder to hack than standard, off the shelf software, and you can be sure that a reputable custom software developer will work hard to keep your application or programme and the data it contains as safe and secure as possible.

Customised Software is Adaptable

Ready made software is designed to be adaptable and flexible, meeting your company’s needs and requirements both now and in the future. Even if you need a few different software programmes to accomplish organisational tasks, a custom developer will be able to integrate the different processes that you need into a single, usable application. Custom software is also much more likely to be cross-platform suitable, so you can be sure that when your company goes mobile you have the software that will support it.

Software Development Life Cycle – Introduction Model Stages and Advantages

What is the Software Development Life Cycle (SDLC)?

SDLC or Software Development Life Cycle is essentially the process or phases of a model or methodology, which software engineers and developers follow in developing an application or software. In simpler words, it is a process consisting of a series of planned activities for planning, creating, testing, deploying and maintenance of software.

SDLC is often referred as software development process, as it consists of all tasks, which needs to be followed while developing an application or software. SDLC is followed within IT development companies to develop, alter, replace or enhance the performance of the software. ISO/IEC 12207 is an international standard for SDLC, which ensures high quality of the newly developed software. It also helps IT development companies in improving the overall quality of their software development services.

What are the major SDLC Models, followed in the IT Industry?

There are various SDLS models, which are currently followed in the IT Industry. Often referred as ‘Software Development Process Models’, all the process models follow unique software development steps, ensuring 100% success of the development projects.

The major software development life cycle models are-

  • Waterfall Model
  • Iterative Model
  • Spiral Model
  • V-Model
  • Big Bang Model

Other related models are Rapid Application Development (RAD), Prototype and Agile Models.

The advantages of choosing an appropriate Software Development Life Cycle (SDLC)-

  • Increased Product Quality
  • Increased Development Speed
  • Improved Client Relations
  • Improved Tracking & Control
  • Decreased Project Risks
  • Decreased Project Management Overhead

What are the different stages of SDLC?

Stage 1:

Planning and Requirement Analysis

This is the most important stage in the SDLC. This stage needs input from the customers, sales team, industry experts, a marketing team and their survey reports. After which, senior business managers and developers of a software development company plan the project approach and the development model.

Stage 2:

Designing

After the analysis of requirements and finalizing the Design Document Specification (DDS), the product architecture is designed by an expert team. This architecture has to stand upon various parameters such as budget, time, product robustness, risk assessment and design modularity, after which it is considered for the development.

Stage 3:

Development

The actual development of the software or application starts at this stage. The team of engineers and developers follow the coding guidelines set by the organization and use different tools for code generation. The programming code is generated as per the details documented in the DDS. The developers use different high level programming languages as per the requirement.

Stage 4:

Testing

In this stage, the final product goes through a pre-defined road of testing, where defects or bugs in the product are reported and then fixed by the developers. This stage ensures that the final product meets the highest quality standards, which are accepted worldwide.

Stage 5:

Deployment

At this stage, the final product is deployed at the client base. At times, the software is integrated with the client’s current application and database. All the deployment and integration works are done under the guidance of expert software engineers and developers.

Stage 6:

Maintenance & Support

Most of the reputed IT development companies also provide complete maintenance and technical support, post deployment of the final product at client base.

The Basic Methodology of Software Development Services

Software development is a technically complex process which goes through various stages during the whole development procedure. The concept is termed as software (S/W) development life cycle (SDLC) and involves various stages of (S/W) development. To successfully offer software development services, organizations should define a development methodology that suits the requirements of the project. Different projects may require different methodologies therefore software development service providers must evaluate the project requirements first and then formulate the strategy for the software development life cycle.

Most of the software development service providers have a pre-defined methodology that is implemented while developing a software. The process gets a little modified according to the project requirements but the essence of the project development procedure remains the same. The basic stages of software development are as mentioned below:

Requirements Specifications: The first and foremost step while developing software must be gathering the requirements of the project. The organizations must start with analyzing the feasibility and the requirements of the project. Some questions that must be clarified in this phase are:

What are client’s expectations of the project?

What would the user want in the software?

Is the project technically feasible or not?

The above questions, along with many more, must be answered and properly justified before software development service providers move any further.

Design: This stage involves development of an outlay for developing the project with all the little details included. The project requirements are evaluated and an implementation strategy for achieving these requirements in the form of a software is formulated. The designing phase is divided into two categories i.e. system design and component design. The system design is design of the software as a whole where questions like how the individual components will interact with each other are answered. The component design phase, as the name suggests, deals with the planning for each individual component.

Implementation: The components are actually created in the implementation phase. The design layout created in the previous phase is implemented and converted into a machine language that the computer can understand and respond to. Programming languages such as C, C++, C#, Asp.Net, PHP etc are used according to the project requirement to achieve the best possible results. The source code and database are created in the implementation phase. Accurate and effective designing of the software is essential for a successful implementation of the software.

Testing: The testing phase usually starts after the components are created but in some cases the software development service provider can start the testing along with the implementation phase. This methodology may require a little more effort and time but the end solution is void of any discrepancies or errors as they are detected and removed as soon as a component is developed.

Installation: The components of the software are combined together and the completed software is installed and executed on a computer system. If all the previous phases have been performed expertly then there will be no problem in the installation phase. A thorough testing is again recommended after installing the software to make sure that the end solution is working as desired.

Maintenance: It has been noticed that almost every software goes through changes and modification after it is completed. This may be due to some new requirements, overlooked features or the change in the business strategy. This requires constant evaluation and maintenance of the software.

Most of the software (S/W) development service providers follow the above described development methodology for creating softwares. It is the basic methodology of S/W development services. Once the software is completed and delivered successfully, the task of the service provider does not end. A professional S/W development company will offer maintenance services to insure a smooth and well functioning solution to their clients.