What is Software Development Life Cycle & its various Phases?

What is Software Development Life Cycle & its various Phases?

Software Development Life Cycle (SDLC) provides a systematic method for developing and delivering software applications. SDLC is a multistep, iterative process that is relied upon by development teams for creating efficient software applications with minimal errors. It provides them a well-defined, structured sequence of stages involved in developing the intended software product.

With several development methodologies available today, it can often become challenging to choose the correct strategy to benefit a particular project. Sometimes even a mix-n-match of multiple methods can turn out to be the perfect fit for a single project.

A typical Software Development Life Cycle consists of 5 main stages:

1) Analysis & Planning: Planning begins once an initiation comes from a business end-user. Planning begins by defining the scope of the concept/ project based on the analysis of stakeholder requirements.
Product feasibility study in financial, operational, and technical areas is conducted in this stage with the inputs from the business end-user. This stage also includes preparing a Quality Assurance and Risk Management plan to minimize any unpredictable risks. In this stage, a Software Requirements Specification (SRS) document is created.

2) Designing: This phase of the SDLC begins by transforming the software specifications into a detailed design plan called the Design Specification. All stakeholders then review this plan and provide their feedback and suggestions. It is vital to have a plan for collecting and incorporating the inputs from stakeholders into this document. Failure at this stage can result in cost overruns and even lead to the project’s total collapse.
In this stage, a Design Documentation Specification (DDS) document is created that also contains budget & time estimates for the project along with design details.

3) Developing: Once the system design documentation is complete, the entire task is sub-divided into various modules or units. This is where the actual coding of the software begins.
Since this phase includes coding, it is the most crucial phase of the SDLC for the developer team. Moreover, it is also the longest phase of the entire software development lifecycle. Once the code is fully developed, testing of the same is carried against the requirements.

4) Testing: Once the product is developed, the software development life cycle testing phase follows. In this stage, the QA testers have to go through the codebase in order to find bugs and errors. If issues are reported, the product is turned back to the developers for them to rectify the flaws and roll it out again. Early discovery of errors and their remedy is the key to reliable software. This phase is repeated until the product becomes flawless.

5) Deployment & Maintenance: Once the software testing phase is over and no bugs or errors are left in the system, then the final deployment process starts. Based on the feedback received from the stakeholders, the final software is released and checked for deployment issues if any.
Once the system is deployed and end-users start using the developed system, the following three activities occur
• Bug fixing – bugs are reported because of some scenarios which are not tested at all
• Upgrade – Upgrading the application to the newer versions of the software
• Enhancement – Adding some new features into the existing software
The main focus of this SDLC phase is to ensure that needs continue to be met and that the system continues to perform as per the specification mentioned in the first phase.

If a business determines a change is needed during any phase of the SDLC, the company might have to proceed through all the above life cycle phases again. The life cycle approach of any project is a time-consuming process. Even though some steps are more difficult than others, none are to be overlooked.
Before deploying an SDLC approach for your teams and staff, consider contacting a knowledgeable IT consultant at Siyana Info Solutions for advice. Our experts have seen how the different models function best in different industries and corporate environments.
Systems development specialists at Siyana Info Solutions possess extensive experience in managing custom software development projects. If you have a requirement at your organization and think a customized software solution may be what you need, contact us today.