The Birth of Software
It was 1948 when the first “software” was born. Tom Kilburn was the person who wrote this very first software program. It was then stored on Manchester Baby Computer at the University of Manchester.
Google called it the “birth of software.”
Since 1948, software development has come a very long way – it has evolved more than it was anticipated at that time. Back then, all the processes were manual but now we hardly come across any manual processes in businesses.
Even small businesses today make use of software to make their processes easier, faster, and accurate. But that’s not all why software development was evolved.
The need to minimize human intervention in sensitive and tedious calculations was the main reason behind continuous improvement in this regard. The improvement kept on going until we were finally able to rely on software than humans.
And today, we see almost every little electronic device is programmed to perform certain operations. We call the software with different names now such as apps or programs. But essentially, any program that is stored on electronic memory to perform certain tasks, is software.
Software Development for Businesses and Startups
Many businesses around the world, regardless of their size or model, rely heavily on software development today. Now, custom software development is not just one process. It takes multiple complex processes to be coherent and logical in order to make just one software.
We will focus more on software development services for startups for now. But moving on, let’s find out the most basic steps in which any custom software development company breaks down its processes.
Whether it’s the development of a turnkey software program or custom software, software development companies generally break down the process into four steps.
These steps are:
More than the steps, you can consider them the four different stages of software development. Each stage has several mini processes and tasks that help reach the target results.
Now, coming straight to the point – what are the best software development strategies?
So, in order to list down only the most relevant strategies, we had to shortlist two very important factors:
- Business model and maturity of the business
- Software Category
And for this article, we have decided to go with custom software development for Startups.
But first, a little about custom software development services.
What is Custom Software Development?
Technically, custom software development is like regular software development. But the fact that custom software differs in its goals, design, flexibility, adaptability, and many other factors, makes the two very different from each other.
Whenever any business adopts custom software, it means they are challenging the limits of their business growth. Because sooner or later, a business, if its operations rely on software, will need custom software.
Then why not go for one right from the start?
Reasons why Startups avoid Custom Software
A number of reasons become a deciding factor as to why businesses choose to go with turnkey or platform software. Some of these reasons are:
- Limited budget at the start of business
- A gap in the operations while the software is in the development
- The risk that the business will not be able to utilize the custom software to the fullest
But there is a way when there is a will.
We are sharing some tips to get custom software and still not break your bank as a startup. Because when it comes to a startup, selecting the right software development strategy is one of the success-defining decisions.
Best Software Development Strategies for Startups
When you are a startup, you have to face one or the other constraints – time or budget. No matter how long it takes for a professional software development company to develop your custom software – it’s always worth waiting.
Because it’s always better to start off fully prepared than to just go with hit-and-trial methods.
The same goes for the budget. It’s better to wait if you don’t have enough budget than to spend the limited money on something you would later regret.
Also, as we promised, we will share some tips that can save you from going all-in and not be able to survive as a startup. So, here they are.
1. Set Your Priorities
When it comes to setting priorities, you may want to consider the goals of your business. You cannot keep all the goals on the high-priority list. There must be some elements that can be dealt with at a later stage when you have more control and stability in the business.
The important thing here is to identify all the goals of your business and then prioritize them rationally. Once you are done with the goals and their priorities, then it’s time to cater to the most important ones.
For example, your startup aims to provide financial services to small businesses. In such a startup, your first priority for custom software should be to incorporate basic finance-related programs.
The elements that you think are required to get things started are the ones to focus on at this stage. Because the best part about custom software programs is that they can always be enhanced or customized when there is a need.
2. Simple User Interface
If you are planning your custom software to look like the one that is used by Facebook or Apple, you may fail to do so. Because again, as a startup, your priorities should be all set. The first thing you need to identify about the user interface for your software is not the design but the actual usability.
It should not be too complex and definitely should not make use of the technology that people are not aware of. The two users must always be on your mind – your employees who will become the firsthand user of the software and your customers – who will ultimately utilize your services through that software.
All the things that are required to keep these two users worry-free must be included in the interface. While your design considerations for the software and how it must look like can always be addressed later.
3. Address the Bugs at Initial Stages
This is one of the tips that you will hear from many professional software development companies. There is not a software on earth that is built free of bugs. It doesn’t matter who develops the software, once it is launched, there will be bugs. However, these bugs can be minimized if you consult a firm that specializes in the development of custom software.
The question here is why should one be worried about these bugs at the initial stage?
That’s because if you don’t get the bugs identified and then fixed, you may have to suffer an even greater loss than now. At a later stage, when your business is already up and running and then the bugs are identified, things can get quite complicated.
Also, if thorough testing is not done of the custom software and any customers find out a big, you may be making a bad impression there.
4. Quality Assurance should never stop
Similar to addressing the bugs, you should never stop the process of quality assurance for your custom software. One reason for that is the continuously changing dynamics of technology. It is possible that your software was developed on an architecture that goes outdated soon. In such scenarios, it is highly recommended to update the architecture to stay up to the mark.
Continuous quality assurance of the software also allows you to explore the full potential of the developed software.
5. Sign a Deal with a Software Development company
This doesn’t mean that you have to pay a software development company on a monthly basis. There are many different ways through which you can avail the instant help from a professional software development company.
Don’t consider the development of custom software a one-time deal. Because it is always better to let the same developers manage and maintain the software who developed it from the scratch.
It may seem like a good idea to say your goodbyes to the company that built the software for you to save some costs. But it always is better to have them ready for you. And that can be done when you sign a deal with them for your software’s management and upkeep.\
Software development is not an easy process. And as we mentioned, it is itself a collection of several complex processes.
So, when you want to get a custom software developed, never make any decisions in a hurry.
The first thing to do is identifying your goals and then setting their priorities. Then there is quality assurance, maintenance, and upkeeping of the software. All of these considerations are very important when you are a startup and looking for a custom software for your business.