Software Development Life Cycle: An Overview
What’s a Software Development Life Cycle?
Software development life cycle refers to a set of structured steps and methodologies used to create high-quality software for the lowest possible time and cost. The ideology behind SDLC stems from the goal to produce top-notch software that meets and exceeds all customer expectations. This is easily achievable provided you use SDLC, for it will help you identify all inefficiencies in the development process and eliminate them.
Before running any application development software, you need to segregate the development life cycle into defined parts for much higher efficiency. All these individual stages will have their own set of processes and deliverables. Follow these steps to the book and you will have on your hands a detailed plan that entails the planning, building, and maintenance of the software in question. To understand how SDLC exactly works, let’s delve a little deeper into its functionality.
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In this golden era of rapid technological growth, the technologies, and methods behind making high-quality software have changed monumentally. But this doesn’t pertain to the actions and responsibility’s part. High-performance and scalable software must be delivered efficiently and well on schedule. This is where the Software Development Life Cycle enters the picture. Simply mastering the technology and usage of application development software just won’t do the trick anymore. What you really need is a way to build software with the highest possible quality and lowest cost. This is the exact methodology a software development life cycle follows. Hence, to know more, read on as we delve into all aspects of SDLC.
How Does SDLC Work?
SDLC strictly adheres to the motto, “High quality, low cost”. In order to do so, it distinctly outlines every task required to develop software. By doing so, you can essentially eliminate certain pitfalls in the development process and avoid inefficiencies and waste. So, the first step towards creating seamless software is defining the existing deficiencies.
Once this is done, the next logical step is to point out the new system’s requirements. This entails analysis, planning, designing, development, testing, and deployment. Many companies divide these steps into even smaller steps to boost efficiency. For instance, planning can be split into research and cost-benefit analysis.
Similarly, you can merge steps as well. For example, the testing and development phase can run parallel to each other, since developers need to rid the system of errors and bugs in the testing phase. To help you understand the process, let’s split SDLC into its seven different phases.
7 Phases of a Software Development
Identification of Current Problems
This is the initial as well as an essential part of SDLC. You need to ask yourself the question, “What are the problems with your current software?”. This requires inputs from customers, stakeholders, salesmen, experts, and programmers. Point out the weaknesses of your existing system, and once you have those, you now know what holes to fill in the next iteration.
This is the phase where your team will evaluate the terms of the project. They will have to calculate labor costs, analyze requirements, make calendars, set targets, and define the team and leadership structure. Planning also involves panning out the risks involved and formulating sub-plans to reduce them. Once the scope and purpose of the software are clearly defined, the teams can plot the course to develop it using application development software.
Defining requirements includes figuring out what the application is supposed to do and its requirements. This can mean determining software specifications, detailed plan creation, allocation of resources, documentation, etc. Defining requirements can grant teams with some foresight into the software production process.
This phase of SDLC pertains to drafting a design plan that lays out the architecture and make of the software. This can include coding guidelines, formulation of design documents, tools to be used to meet software requirements, etc. This plan is then reviewed by all stakeholders, who will further incorporate feedback and suggestions into the plan.
Time to start writing the actual code for the software. This phase involves using application development software to initiate software development. The work for this phase can be split into several teams assigned different sets of tasks and goals. Ensure that the developers stick to the guidelines and general guidelines regarding code style and practices are in place. Teams must work in cohesion for an efficient and seamless development phase.
In this phase, teams must raise the question, “Did we achieve what we wanted to?”. It is critical to test the software to assure quality thoroughly. Identify the defects and fix the product until it meets its pre-established specifications.
Once testing is successfully done, it is now time to push the software out to the users. The software is then deployed to the production environment to reach the user. The deployment process is usually automated, and the application is ready for download. Some companies can merge the deployment and testing phases. By releasing a beta version of the software to users, all final mistakes can be caught and fixed before releasing the product into the market.
SDLC Models Methodologies
The waterfall is a development method, in which the project spills onto the next step on completion of a task. The advantage of this method is that it allows for the evaluation of every step before proceeding to the next one. But it is a considerably slow process.
The model mainly focuses on customer experience and input. Developers review customer feedback, find, and analyse problems with older applications, and implement them. Agile aims to release software cycles faster to keep up with the changing market.
The iterative development model entails the creation of the initial version of the software as soon as possible. After that, developers keep improving on it in small but effective steps.
Delving Into The Future of SDLC
The future of SDLC is undeniably a development DevOps security model. As companies stray further and further away from older and obsolete models of SDLC, the adoption of development DevOps security models is proving more and more vital. But what are they? How do they work?
Well, Development DevOps security models contain a set of tasks, approaches, and tools to dissolve boundaries between teams and have them work in harmony towards a common goal. Now that multiple teams are working in cohesion, the workforce will have a more streamlined and synchronized approach to problem-solving. New functionality can be delivered faster, and more frequent software updates can be rolled out.
One of the most major advantages of using the development DevOps security model is that security will not be treated as a separate compartment in the development life cycle. It will now be followed up and viewed as a vital component of SDLC. In the coming few years, companies will use a much more evolved development DevOps security model, where security will be studded into the entirety of SDLC. There won’t be a need to consider it as a separate entity.
By now, you understand that making high-quality software corresponds to mastery in application development software and a systematic and structured development process. Using a development DevOps security model in your SDLC can give you the competitive advantage you need and the finesse of high-performance software.