We understand that you are excited about working on a new project and feel tempted to rush into development and skip the entire planning phase. However, this is the last thing you should do. If you don’t invest a lot of time and effort into creating a bulletproof plan, your development project will almost certainly fail.
Regardless of the type of project, you have to plan every detail to avoid any future problems and delays. In the following article, we will tell you about the things you have to consider and map out during this initial stage.
Define your goals
Obviously, you already have a general idea of what you want to achieve and how the project will help you on the journey. Nevertheless, you have to sit down with your managers and clearly state every stage. Firstly, you have to ensure that every person understands their job and is completely in agreement with the others. Secondly, if you do not have a clear goal in front of you, you won’t be able to make the right decisions on the way. No, this isn’t one of those things you can work on along the way as things develop.
List the requirements
Once you have an explicit, long-term goal in front of you, you can start working on all the things you need to achieve it. We are talking about equipment, employees, and their skills, experience, budget, the time needed, etc. You will also have to define numerous small goals you want to achieve on the way, the ones that will lead you to the main one.
You should try to sketch these and write down graphic details that will enable you to understand how everything has to work. Naturally, these will depend on multiple factors such as the size of the project and the ultimate objective, which is why you have to take your time and avoid any general guidelines. You can use them as a starting point, but you have to ensure that they entirely complement the project you are working on.
Consider the costs
Every software development project requires a significant investment. It is crucial to know the approximate amount of money you have to put into it. If you skip this step, you will probably be presented with the costs you didn’t expect that you maybe can’t afford. In addition, by calculating the approximate cost, you will be able to figure out where you can save some money and maybe invest it into another significant aspect of the process. Clearly, it is too soon to calculate the exact cost because numerous additional expenses will arise on the way, but still, you will have an estimate. This step is even more important if you are restricted money-wise and cannot afford to exceed the original budget.
Outline the timetable
When working on creating anything new, you want it to be finished and present it to your clients as soon as possible. However, rushing the development is never a good idea. The only way to ensure that your product will be high-quality is to take time while designing it. However, at the same time, you cannot spend too much time on it.
In order to be able to set a deadline and meet it without any trouble, you have to understand how long the development will take. When designated a timeline, take into consideration all the above-mentioned factors and requirements. Another important thing is to communicate with managers and stay on top of everything every step of the way. Communication with your employees is of crucial importance during this entire process.
When working on this, don’t forget to include the testing period after the project is finalized. The timetable is another thing that will depend on the type of project. Some things can be developed in two or three months with a few experts, while others will require more time and manpower.
Build a team
Now, we have reached the most important aspect of planning a software development project. Firstly, you have to take into consideration all requirements you previously determined. Think about the equipment and technology that must be used, then move to skills and expertise employees have to possess to be able to complete every task successfully and meet every milestone. Lastly, think about their fee.
Naturally, you want to hire the best of the best, so you have to make sure that they meet all conditions, that they have enough experience and that they have worked on that type of project in the past, that they possess all the skills, etc. By following this guide, you will also be able to understand how many people you have to hire. This is especially important if you are on a tight budget because the last thing you want is to employ a team of five people and pay for their fees when the job can be done by two experts.
When choosing developers, you have multiple options. You can always hire someone you have already worked with and know-how reliable and professional they are. On the other hand, you should consider hiring offshore software developers. Nowadays, many companies opt for this option because it enables them to get a team of experts that can successfully finish the project, but at a significantly lower price. If this sounds appealing to you and you want to learn about top software development companies, visit the Business Wire website.
Nevertheless, don’t forget that there are many things you have to think about when hiring an offshore company. Besides checking their previous work and contacting other clients, you have to ensure that they are reliable and that they will be at your disposal whenever you need them. Obviously, you cannot oversee their work every step of the way, so you have to make sure that they are forthcoming and use numerous communication channels.
To sum up, these are five essential steps you have to take when planning a software development project. As you can see, this process can take some time, so you should start working on it as soon as possible, to be able to follow the timetable and finish your project before the deadline.