Common Issues in Software Development and How to Handle Them

Software development is critical to business success. Adapting to the technological environment can be both challenging and rewarding at the same time, and there are many potential issues that can arise when implementing changes. In this article we are going to address some of the key issues when dealing with software development and how best to tackle them head on DURING your development process.

Identifying the “End User”

One of the most important stages of the development process is identifying and clearly defining who your application will cater to. Software can be perfectly designed and can be completely functional, but if it serves no purpose or a need for it doesn’t exist in the market, you’ve most likely wasted valuable time and resources that could have been poured into something else.

The government of NSW highlights the process of determining who your “end-user” is and is a great starting point for most businesses.

Testing your product

Sounds fairly simple? “Quality Assurance” is a prominent process in developing software or any product for that matter. Now this doesn’t just mean testing for bugs, glitches, and potential coding issues but also usability, ease of access, user expectations, and stability. 

By creating “check-points” and adopting testing methods at every turn you can save yourself a lot of trouble through verification and bug fixing at multiple stages of the development process.

Coders and developers often find themselves strapped for time when meeting deadlines, so these added parameters could prove to be more of a hindrance than a benefit – But an easy way around this is to simply outsource the job to “Quality Assurance” testers and ensure that the end product is stable and meets all expectations. Not only do you guarantee a good finished product, you are also able to get an outsider’s opinion and view before you make it available to everyone else.

Communication

We cannot stress enough how important communication is between the development team and client. From the initial brief to the final product there can be a lot of gaps and misinterpretations that could severely diminish the quality of work.

Having open communication channels is vital to great software development – A great way to implement this is through use of software such as Slack or Zoom to ensure that the development team is continuously on the right track through every stage of the process.

Trying to do too much

One of the biggest pitfalls that occurs when creating new software or an app is trying to do too much. Having a program that can do EVERYTHING sounds great on paper but is it really practical? Most often, having too many features is severely detrimental to an app’s functionality and performance.

A great way to prevent this from happening is by having clear outlined goals and a scope of what you or your client expectations are. Having 2 or 3 functional apps that each cover different operations is significantly better than having a one clunky app trying to do it all.

Budget and Scope Creep

One of the most common complications developers run into is issues with the budget and scope creep. There’s a significant tie-in here with “testing” AND “trying to do too much” – If the initial brief for development has been adjusted at different stages multiple times, the end result is an added increase to overall cost as well a significant increase in time spent. 

A great way to avoid this issue is through thorough planning at the start of the development process. This minimises the risk of running into unexpected challenges that could potentially cause the project to exceed the budget.

Integration

Another important issue that can easily be avoided provided it is addressed during early development is compatibility and integration. If you fail to anticipate or understand which hardware and software your client base will be utilising you could be setting yourself for a lot of work post development. For example, building software with iOS in mind, only to find out that the majority of users will be using Android.

Another common problem that could occur is third party API integration. If your software is being designed with integration in mind, it’s vital to iron out the “kinks” and know what you’re working with prior to project completion to avoid integration issues.

Final thoughts and conclusions

If there’s one recurring theme and lesson to take away from this article – It’s that testing is definitely one of THE most important stages of development.

Meticulous planning and market research could save you a lot of time and money in the long run. Focused development that specialises in one area over a broad development process is the way to go. 

If you found this article helpful and you find yourself in need of a developer or even some advice, don’t hesitate to get in touch with us and book a FREE consultation. We specialise in all things software related and are in this business to help people.  Shoot us an email at info@localteam.com.au or call us on (07) 4599 7300 Mon-Fri :9am-4pm

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