To bring about viable yet successful software, companies follow a rigorous process of software development. This development Life cycle consists of various critical phases, without software that can never be developed efficiently.
Before digging into these essential phases, let us first know what the software development life cycle is.
What is a Software Development Lifecycle?
Since the software is a complex product with many vital components, hence it is developed via a series of steps. These steps are to be followed carefully for missing one step that can result in a disaster.
The steps are to be followed sequentially as the output of one step is the input to the next. Therefore, the chain of actions eventually contributes to the development of working software.
The series of steps is called the software development lifecycle, also called as SDLC.
How does the SDLC work?
The software development lifecycle is a continuing process. It does not end once the software is released as the software needs continuous maintenance and updating even after its deployments. Though some software houses may follow a different order of steps, the step themselves remain more or less the same.
The software development lifecycle works by devising a plan on how to develop software. The structured program allows project managers to measure the progress and the quality of software during its development.
Phases of Software Development Lifecycle (SDLC)
Like project management lifecycle, software development lifecycle, too, begins with the planning phase. This phase includes drafting business case documents that propose the software vision, scope, and target audience.
Moreover, the resources are needed for the successful completion of the software. These resources include the workforce as well as the tools required.
Another unignorably aspect of the planning phase is the project schedule. It involves the project’s division to manageable tasks that are to be complete within a specific time.
To sum up, the planning phase outputs project plans, well-planned schedules, and budget estimation. These are brought up by the project manager and the development team working for the development of software.
Stakeholders have a set of requirements that they want in the software to be developed. A collection of meetings and brainstorming sessions is arranged so that stakeholders could convey all their needs and requirements to satisfy them.
The output of this phase of the software development lifecycle is a document that lists all the software requirements. The report is forward to the development team, who then start working on the software.
3. Design and prototyping
Once the development team understands the requirements, software developers start with the design of the software. The developers use architecture frameworks and existing components to compose applications.
Moreover, they also use prototyping to bring about the best possible software designs that suit all the needs.
4. Software development
This phase is the most critical phase of the software development life cycle that blows life into a software idea. There are several methodologies that software development companies follow to bring about robust software.
The choice of the method used entirely depends on the developers and the software requirements. Software developers try their best to complete the development within the given deadlines while maintaining high standards.
At the same time, they also make sure that the Business stakeholders are engaged regularly so to meet their expectations. The result of this phase is a functional software ready to go through the testing phase.
The testing phase of the SDLC is one of the most critical steps. To ensure that software produced works perfectly and it’s bug-free and y, the software is run through a wide range of tests.
These tests include the checks for code quality, functionality, security, and performance. Many software houses have automated the testing phase to increase the efficiency and reliability of the stage.
The deployment phase is when the software is ready to be used. The step is an automated process and one of the least time taking stages of the software development lifecycle.
Application Release Automation tools are used for the automatic deployment of software in their environments. ARA systems are usually integrated with Continuous Integration tools. The output of this phase is working software.
7. Operations and maintenance
The phase that makes the SDLC running through the life of the software is the operations and maintenance phase.
The operations and maintenance phase works to ensure that the developed software operates entirely, fixing bugs and defects that arise with time.
Moreover, the software needs regular updates for its proper operation or might need new features as per user demand. Hence, this phase counters to all needs that may arise during the running of software in the future.