“Software is a great combination between artistry and engineering.” – Bill Gates
The world is smitten and surrounded by technology and the continually changing requirements of the business world have made custom software development an essential ingredient for all domains. Software development is a complex term, involving multi-faceted components that need focus and accuracy.
It isn’t everyone’s cup of tea to develop and implement software that is perfect, accurate, and effective. There are various angles and purviews that must be considered while developing a software application. It is advisable to follow specific known software development best practices, in all the software development lifecycle phases, to come up with a robust and performing solution.
Getting in best practices software development will help in optimally using the development time with a simple-to-read code and effective implementation. Every business is in need for such best practices for making effective use of money, time, and effort.
This article aims to encompass the key best practices for software development based on the years of experience and expertise gained. These guidelines are sure to help you gain a better understanding of code and thereby, minimize the occurrence of errors.
It is ideally meant for those developers who want to enhance their coding skills, protect their software against malicious attacks and offer a robust and performing solution to their customers.
It is wise to follow best practices in software development to assist you in shaping a good quality software development approach with a perfect software application as an output. Go through the below-mentioned best practices for software development to achieve a fruitful result:
Code is the foundation of any software development project. Developers must work towards making their code readable, clear, and modular. With the code being more understandable and reusable, it will be easier to work towards an accurate software solution being developed. Writing code with speed and accuracy is a must else it may lead to a slow outcome.
The code must be written in such a way that it is easily understood by others. It may look easy but when you start writing easy-to-understand code, it is a challenging task and a rewarding one too. Even checking on your code on a regular basis is a must, so that any error can be captured beforehand, leading to an error-free implementation.
With a multitude of technologies getting increasingly popular, developers must adapt to a known application framework while developing the software solution. There is no need to start creating software manually when there are readymade components put together and available for faster and more effective access.
Application frameworks consist of tools that can lessen your burden of doing meticulous tasks during the development and testing phases. Usage of components, libraries, and frameworks can save time, costs, and the working efforts of developers. They can concentrate better on their coding efforts rather than other activities like converting file formats, managing databases, etc.
On any software project, there are multiple developers working and hence, there are different versions of code components moving around. Maintaining and managing a consolidated version of the entire software application is a must, as one of the key software development best practices. There are effective version control tools like Git, GitHub, CVS, SVN, etc. that can do a great job of maintaining different versions of all the software components. Developers can even revert to older versions in case needed.
The version control tools track changes in the code and synchronize them with the master file stored on a remote server. They also assure a guaranteed backup of the code in case the system crashes. The task force can sync their changes regularly by downloading from the server.
Whatever the software development task may be, it is vital to select the right IT partner who is experienced and expert in different kinds of software application projects. The service provider must be well-competent with the latest coding standards, and technologies, maintaining code quality, and leading projects to a successful implementation.
The IT partner must have hands-on experience in many tools and technologies combined with profound domain knowledge to help in carving out a digital roadmap that guarantees success. It is advisable to choose a solution provider who has proficiency in various industry segments.
Doing easy coding following standards and conventions is the best way to ensure that the code is well structured, implemented, and worked upon. The entire software code must be well maintained and documented so that even if developers keep on changing, the newcomer can easily understand.
Even when the entire code must be submitted to another team or organization, if the coding style is simple to understand, it is easier to hand over. The naming conventions of variables, functions and other components in the source code must be pre-defined, meaningful, and well-followed. Just looking at the name should give a hint of what that function or variable stands for.
Be it any kind of software development, choosing the right technology, framework, library, tool, architecture, or language is highly crucial and one of the best practices for software development. All projects have their own set of requirements and peculiarities that must be attended to, with care and caution. It is vital to spend a good amount of effort and time in choosing this since once done, it cannot be easily reverted.
Selecting the proper tools and technologies will make your entire software development process efficient and performance-driven. Automation tools must also be a part of the technology bucket so that development is faster, non-repetitive, and error-free.
The software development lifecycle is a long process, and it originates from the seed of requirements by the customer. Hence, it is important that the customer needs are collected, analyzed, and finalized right from the start of the project. There could be some variations along with way, but it is better to finalize the entire chunk of project requirements right from the start so that the foundation is strong, robust, and efficient.
There must be proper documents prepared like the feasibility report, software requirements specification document, and software design document which contain all the fundamental needs in a self-explanatory manner, after which developers can take over the coding process.
Implementing different project execution models ensures timely deliverables and quality software solutions. Organizations could follow DevOps, Agile, Waterfall, and Iterative models based on the project requirement, scope, and functionalities. The detailed execution strategy and selection of the right execution model help in delivering better, faster, and desired outcomes.
There are many factors on which the selection of the project execution methodology depends. It could be software requirements, customer needs, project deadlines, skilled resource availability, budget estimates, etc. It is vital that organizations select the right kind of approach based on their business workflow and organizational objectives.
If you look at the major processes in software development best practices, testing is at its crux. However much you focus on coding and development, if it is not well tested, it is impossible to ascertain an error-free software application. Testing is an integral part of the entire process and hence it is best to integrate testing right from the start of the project.
Unit testing, performance testing, load testing, functional testing, automated testing, manual testing – there are many types of testing that must be analyzed and finalized right from the start of the project so that all development modules are well tested as they move towards the acceptance testing and implementation phase.
Documentation may sound tedious but is one of the most required components in any software development process. It creates a repository of your project with a complete understanding of the software. This empowers users in taking care of things as they newly approach the project. It also saves you from remembering things and ensures the timely completion of activities.
Having proper documentation offers greater confidence as it serves as a handy manual for everyone – developers who have been in the project for a long and those who have entered the project currently. It makes optimal use of time by offering instant information on any module or component, u wish to look at. It also helps coders in understanding other coding modules, since the coding style could be different for different developers.
Looking at the number of stakeholders involved in any software development project, it is advisable to follow a component-based architecture. It looks at the organizational structure, interfaces, and components involved, different architectures, and technologies associated with the project. It facilitates iterative software development best practices by the continual progression of the system architecture.
Going with a component-driven architecture can be robust, effective, and profitable for the project since it empowers managers to distribute work amongst teams and separate the hardware and software components. It also helps in ensuring the reusability and customization of components from the bulk of sources accessible. Identification and risk management become easier and more accessible with a component-based architecture.
Every industry segment needs skilled software developers and each one of them needs to follow certain best practices for software development. We hope the above-listed, well-crafted software development best practices can be of great assistance to you, as you create your own software.
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