6 Stages of Software Development Life Cycle

20 December4 min read
6 Stages of Software Development Life Cycle

Without a clear roadmap, developing software can feel like you're buying a one-way ticket to a never-ending series of setbacks, including but not limited to: failed attempts, increased costs, and postponed release dates. The majority of businesses have, in the past and continue to try, to hurry their software development projects in order to reach the targeted timelines. But they haven't yet reached the end of the road. Once the final product reaches the hands of the public, a number of challenges begin to arise that compromise the quality of the product for the ultimate user. Every business should implement SDLC-based software development to prevent these kinds of problems. Implementing SDLC in a methodical and step-by-step fashion ensures a high-quality software solution and rapid time to market. Want to know more about SDLC but not sure what it is? If you want to know the answer to that and much more, keep reading! 

What Exactly is Software Development Lifecycle?

In case you were unaware, the phases of the Software Development Lifecycle (SDLC) are as follows: requirements analysis, design, development, testing, deployment, and maintenance. Following the steps in this article will help product managers direct their teams more effectively across the software development life cycle. Let's jump right in to find out more about it, shall we?

Stage-1: Planning and Analysis 

The first stage is the most crucial and important one for the success of a software project. This phase is divided into two parts: one is the planning stage, and the other is the analysis stage. In the planning stage (also known as the feasibility stage), communication takes place between stakeholders, end-users, and the team. On the other hand, the analysis stage is where you gather the functional and financial feasibility to create a product, along with several other parameters such as revenue potential, product cost, etc. Once you've gained clarity about the business and stakeholder goals as per user needs, you are good to move on to the next stage. 

Stage-2: Design 

During the design phase, several software-design-related decisions are made, including the overall details of the application and its various specifications. This also includes system design, programming language, coding guidelines, tools, frameworks, and so on. Finding answers to these questions will assist the team in meeting the software requirements specifications (SRS) and fulfilling the goals defined in the requirement-gathering phase. Also, developing a pre-production version of a product during this phase will help the team visualize the product and generate various insights, avoiding the extra hassle of rewriting the code. Once done, development managers prepare a brief design document that will be helpful in moving toward the other stages of SDLC. 

Stage-3: Development 

It's finally time to code! This is the phase where the actual product is developed and built. It is also one of the time-consuming stages of SDLC. To keep the process smooth, the developers need to understand the expectations and set defined timelines across the complete development process. Developers need to follow specific programming guidelines that result in the development of the project based on project specifications and requirements. In certain cases, this stage can be merged with the testing phase, where certain tests are run to ensure whether the developed software contains critical bugs or not. 

Stage-4: Testing 

Once the software is developed, it is time to deploy it into the testing environment. But before making the product live, it is important to get it tested by your QA team to ensure that it is free of bugs and functioning properly. Implementing this stage properly will also help the entire team point out major user experience or security issues, if any. There are various types of testing that you can do in this phase, such as performance testing, functional testing, security testing, user testing, unit testing, and so on. Thus, taking the appropriate steps to fix those issues as early as possible will also save you millions of dollars. 

Stage 5: Deployment 

The deployment stage is where the software product is deployed into the production environment. Everything you have done in the previous stages, from gathering the requirements and developing the product to testing it, is shared with the end users of the product. The software is released to a limited number of real users to predict environmental issues or their impact on the new release of the product. 

Stage 6: Maintenance 

The work is not yet done! The SDLC does not end once the software reaches the market. This is the stage where the original problem starts as consumers come with their product-related issues. This stage involves reviewing, networking, and maintaining incident management or resolution to sort out any problems. The maintenance stage requires the developers to start handling the issues encountered by the end users and treat them with the best possible solutions. 

Ready to Implement SDLC in Your Company?

With the growing craze for software development, it has become more necessary than ever to implement it while creating the software product. By following SDLC as a product is being made, teams can look at their work from different angles to meet the needs of the end users. It saves you from multiple development efforts. In fact, through continuous feedback and insights during the software development process, the team can deliver quickly and achieve a competitive advantage over others in the global market.