The app development is backed by hard work, planning, resource investment, and documentation. For this reason, all software companies have different combinations of the best app development methodologies to ensure the perfect solution.
There are lots of factors that go into how application development is done. You must consider the size of the project, how specific the requirements are, changes things, how large the development team is, and the deadline for the project.
In this article, we will discuss the app development methodologies that stand at the core of app development project management: Waterfall, RAD, and Agile.
The keywords for the waterfall method of application development are planning and sequence. The entire project is mapped out in the planning and analysis stages. The customer comes with a very explicit list of features and functionalities for the application. Then, a project manager takes the whole process and maps it out amongst the team.
This application development method is called waterfall because once you go down, you can’t go back up; everything flows downward. The development team works together over a set of time, building exactly what is lined out according to the specifications. After the architecture is designed, then only can the construction begin. The entire application is built, and then it is all tested to make sure that it is working correctly. Then, it is shown to the customer and ready to be implemented.
The waterfall method assumes that the project requirements are clear and the customer and project manager have a unified and clear vision of the end result.
Waterfall works best as an application development method when:
- You don’t anticipate many changes.
- Budgets are fixed for the project.
- You’ve done a similar project before.
- The customer is very clear and doesn’t plan to be involved much until the end.
When waterfall methodology becomes a challenge for App Development:
- Changes are difficult.
- No client involvement.
- No testing until development.
2. Rapid App Development (RAD)
Developers very well know how to create an app, but when it comes to building and launching an app swiftly, they need a development methodology that makes it done. RAD methodology is the answer.
RAD (rapid application development) methodology aims to increase the project turnaround time and release iterations which makes it an attractive choice for businesses. RAD excels at accommodating the changes easily and refining the application after every iteration.
When RAD methodology is a good fit for App Development:
- An experienced team of developers.
- A highly engaged customer.
- A flexible delivery date.
- Pressing business.
When RAD methodology becomes a challenge for App Development:
- Extend development time.
Agile application development is very similar to RAD but also includes some changes to make it more suitable for larger projects. Agile is iterative, like RAD, but focuses on building features one at a time. Each feature is built in an organized way in the team, but the customer is involved to see the features and sign off on them before the next feature is developed.
Agile uses sprints or set of time when a certain feature should be built, tested, and presented. This, ideally, helps to stick to a planned schedule but also allows for frequent reviews.
When Agile methodology is a good fit for App Development:
- The project is large enough to break down into several sprints.
- You have a lot of specialists who can work on a team together.
- The core of the project is known ahead of time and can be planned out.
- You have good project leaders in place.
When Agile methodology becomes a challenge for App Development:
- Require a huge time commitment from clients.
- Developers must fully complete each feature within each iteration for client approval.
At Clarika, we work with AGILE methodology, feature-driven creations, and lean software development. The clarity brought by Agile and the focus on delivering small features sooner in the development cycle help simplify definition and delivery by incrementally solving complex problems.
Which method is best for your project?
These three methodologies are the most common in software development. Each one has its own strengths and weaknesses and works effectively in different situations. The correct method for your business project depends on the project size, needs, and target audience expectations.
For instance, when the long-term project with requirements is set in stone, then waterfall methodology would be the best pick. When the app requires changes to incorporate in between the project, then agile methodology adoption for app development works great. RAD methodology stands out when it comes to building an app rapidly.
Ready to develop your next app? Contact us today.