Software development has become a cornerstone for businesses across various industries. Companies heavily rely on robust software solutions to gain a competitive edge, so much so that McKinsey & Company stated, “Every company is a software company.”
Software development challenges are inevitable whether you have an in-house or offshore development team. However, what makes a robust development team is the ability to face these obstacles head-on and address them successfully. So, let’s shed light on some of the most common challenges in software projects to help your team prepare for and overcome them.
7 Challenges Encountered in Software Development Projects
Recognize the following challenges to navigate the constantly evolving software development landscape and drive business success.
1. Managing technical debt
New technical requirements from constant innovation may be too overwhelming for some companies to implement. Delaying implementation of these requirements can lead to issues, and when these issues build up, you end up paying more to resolve them. Companies refer to it as technical debt, and it’s a problem you’ll have to face if you fail to rectify preexisting problems immediately.
Manage tech debt by resolving issues according to their severity and urgency, with high-impact debts taking precedence over lower ones. Then, incorporate debt resolution tactics into the development and allocate time for refactoring and code improvement. Once you’ve caught up, remember to address problems as they come to avoid rebuilding your team’s tech debt.
2. Ensuring scalability
There may come a time when your business will outgrow the capabilities of your software. If it’s not built on a scalable platform, you risk starting the software development process from scratch to accommodate the increasing demand.
A competent development team will build software with scalability in mind to avoid roadblocks like this from happening. Operations-wise, an outsourced software development team will help you manage fluctuating demands and increasing workloads.
In turn, you can scale operations efficiently without needing time- and resource-intensive recruitment and onboarding processes, allowing you to adjust to rapidly shifting market changes. Additionally, consider leveraging cloud-based development tools, like Azure, GitHub, and Heroku, to adapt your system capabilities according to fluctuating demands.
3. Maintaining code quality
Writing high-quality code is often challenging for software developers, especially when they’re under pressure and have insufficient quality assessment processes to review their work. This problem leads to numerous issues, including increased maintenance costs, reduced system stability, and decreased user satisfaction.
Your development team should always be in-the-know with current coding quality standards and best practices. Consider implementing peer code reviews to catch bugs and ensure adherence to quality standards. You can also leverage automated testing tools to streamline software tests and identify bugs and quality issues before the mass release of the product.
4. Meeting project deadlines
Is your team encountering poor time management? While they may not happen regularly, developers sometimes underestimate tasks, overlook obstacles, or fail to account for unforeseen circumstances, which lead to time constraints and missed deadlines.
The best way to address this problem is to leverage past experiences with similar projects to forecast obstacles and other issues that may impact efficiency. In tandem with open communication between stakeholders, doing this can help your team create more realistic time estimates and deadlines.
Moreover, you should have already made a service level agreement (SLA) with your development team to ensure they comply with the deadlines. Additionally, consider offshoring software development operations if the time constraints result from insufficient staffing. Working with developers in different time zones allows you to take advantage of extended working hours to improve your team’s efficiency.
5. Realizing (and stopping) scope creep
Scope creep occurs when stakeholders provide additional project requirements without review or control procedures. It inadvertently impacts schedules, costs, resource allocation, budget, and other factors, undermining your team’s progress and possibly resulting in a project that never finishes due to a constantly expanding scope.
Fortunately, you can manage scope creep by clearly defining the project’s requirements. Talk to stakeholders and understand their expectations, then establish a robust change control process to handle such requests. As a result, you maintain control over the project’s scope and deliver successful outcomes within the predefined constraints.
6. Staying within budget
Software projects are becoming more complex and costly as technology continues to advance. The development cycle is resource-intensive—planning, development, testing, and deployment require time, money, and expertise, which are all difficult to provide with large projects.
Thorough project planning is the first step to minimizing costs and staying within budget. A well-defined plan with clear objectives and requirements can help you identify potential obstacles for a more accurate budget estimation. Also, constantly monitoring expenses can help you determine if the project has been functioning under resource constraints so that you can make necessary adjustments otherwise.
Offshoring your software development operations helps with this problem, too, as it leverages the expertise of professionals in more affordable labor markets, further reducing costs without compromising project quality.
7. Managing project risks
Shifting requirements, tight deadlines, and rapidly evolving technologies make software development inherently risky. However, implementing proactive risk management strategies can help you navigate these challenges and increase the likelihood of success.
Before starting a project, always identify and assess potential risks as you progress. Then, employ a risk assessment matrix to categorize them according to severity and determine which to tackle first. Establishing contingency plans also helps you respond swiftly when these liabilities emerge to minimize their impact on the project.
Finally, remember that risk management is a non-stop process requiring continuous monitoring and evaluation. So, stay vigilant and adapt strategies as needed to stay ahead of potential threats.
A Smooth Software Development for Success
As technology progresses, expect software developers’ challenges to also change. That said, try to understand and proactively address these obstacles so your team thrives and delivers exceptional software to launch your company to greater heights.
Leverage offshore staff solutions to face challenges effectively. Manila Recruitment, your go-to partner for offshore hiring in the Philippines, can help you tap into a skilled and specialized talent pool of remote IT staff to secure your business’s success. Contact us to learn more!