3 Ways to Perfect Your Software Development Process

Any company producing software needs to consider the efficiency of its development process. If some areas can improve, it is paramount to address these issues. When a company is constantly scrambling to meet deadlines, there are likely issues in its development process. Even if a company seemingly has no problems meeting deadlines, its process could benefit from optimisations, allowing them to take on more work. Software development is a demanding field. If you are considering how to make software, here are three ways to perfect your software development process.

Make Use of Test Harnesses

Though often perceived as an annoyance, a key component in how to develop software is ensuring that embedded software works the way it is supposed to. It is a common practice of developers to check embedded software quickly. Often they lack an automated system that will check for regression in the embedded software. Incorporating automated software such as this will greatly increase the efficiency and pace of a company’s software development process.

The rate at which software tools have improved is staggering. Tools aiding in software development have improved. Even teams working with small amounts of embedded software care benefit from these tools. Continuous integration, as well as test harnesses, are not excluded from this. Test harnesses are all developed to perform automated regression testing, ensuring that new additions to the code are not necessary and that the code is performing as expected.

Many companies can attest to seeing valid improvements in their software development process when they have used test harnesses. Any software development company not already using a test harness should consider following a more test-driven development process. It will lead to a great improvement in software efficiency.

Reduce Time Spent Debugging

Even if your company employs software developers who enjoy debugging software, it is not an efficient task to occupy their time. The more common reality is that a software developer hates the work of debugging. It is essentially regressive work, as the software developer has to spend time correcting mistakes until the code does what it is supposed to do.

Finding ways to automate finding solutions to bugged code or simply avoiding the mistakes that cause bugged code will save a company a lot of time and resources.

Results of the research on how often companies spend time debugging software are staggering. Surveys and conference talks have revealed that developers spend roughly forty percent of their time debugging. That’s too much time. If a company can improve their process and reduce that forty percent to thirty percent, that will give them 1.2 months (5 workweeks) of extra production time per year.

For companies already pressed for time to reach their deadlines, such an improvement would be reality-changing for the company.

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Optimise Your Processes

In the world of software development, there are frequently extreme styles of mistakes made in a team’s development process. The first is the overly liberal process where developers have too much freedom and not enough continuity with the other team members. The second mistake is a process that is too bureaucratic and restricting. There are so many checks and balances that the pace that the developers can work at is painfully slow. Both of these styles are inefficient. 

The best option is to meet somewhere in the middle. Developers need some measure of freedom to perform their tasks at an optimal pace. However, there also needs to be a means of checking in on each other so that all the members of the team are on the same page.

Software developers who want to address these issues need to engage in a small amount of introspection. Questions could also be raised in a group format so all team members can add their input. 

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The first question is, are there any outdated processes that are no longer relevant? Times change fast, and unthinkingly following an old process can lead to redundant work. Secondly, what relevant processes does this company follow that could be reduced or streamlined for optimal efficiency? Often, companies have policies that work but could be improved. Finally, is this company missing any processes that would improve the quality and efficiency of production? Nothing slows down development like mistakes. It is important to figure out how to avoid these. Processes are essential but should not be oppressive or redundant. It is important to constantly address and look into the processes of a development company to ensure they are doing what they were designed for. 

Conclusion

It is important for software developers to constantly check their processes and address the issues. What worked five years ago is probably no longer relevant. The world of software development is rapidly changing, and those wishing to stay relevant in the field must rapidly change too.

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About the Author

Chloē

Chloë is a digital marketing strategist, consultant and team member at Luden Marketing. She loves living the laptop lifestyle, and enjoys all things digital. She enjoys living life to the fullest and always spreads sunshine and positivity wherever she goes.
Find out more about @chloedonian

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