What is Software Product Development

Software Product Development (SPD) is defined as a business process (function), which validates and properly transforms initial product or service ideas into successful software products or software-based services. SPD function is integral to many types of businesses, including but not limited to: Independent Software Vendors (ISVs), Software-as-a-Service (SaaS) providers, hardware vendors using sophisticated software as part of their offerings, other companies whose services or products are heavily relying on software technologies, in part or entirely. SPD should not be confused with Custom Software Development, as it requires completely different approach and skills.

How Software Product Development is different from Custom Software Development

Software technologies are used in almost any organization across the Globe. However, it’s important to understand the difference between software solutions implemented in particular organization and software as commercial products offered for customers. That’s one of the factors explaining the difference in skills, tools and processes for Software Product Development and Custom Software Development scenarios.

Challenges associated with Software Product Development

Software Product development is associated with the number of challenges. Importance of every challenge comes from its impact on the result. Below you will see how we define those challenges and our best practices for overcoming them.

Challenges Solutions
  People Processes Tools
1. To maximize the product's value for the customer within the budget frames Cultivate innovation culture
Use a Product Manager role
Involve ‘best brains’
Apply process frameworks focused on business value maximization (SCRUM and others) Automate routine procedures (builds creation, regression testing and others)
Use requirements management tools
2. To minimize delivery delays without extra budget Build strong product teams
Organize regular customer-vendor communication
Apply knowledge sharing within the product team
Apply Architecture Tradeoff Analysis Method (ATAM)
Apply Risk management etc. for project schedule control
Apply quantitative product and process metrics
Use video and audio-conferencing tools for regular communication between physically distributed teams
3. To release the high quality first product version Invest in regular team trainings and education
Involve independent QA team
Use advanced defect prevention and early identification methods (Fagan inspection, Unit testing)
Organize beta-testing
Use issue (defect, CR, etc) tracking systems
4. To support multiple product versions   Apply Release Management process Use SCM tool with multi-branching support
5. To minimize product support costs   Test product in all the available environments
Apply usability, performance and stress testing on regular basis
Use Helpdesk and Knowledge Base systems

What are your challenges?

Khem Raj

We understand, however, that every business is unique, and there is no single answer for everyone.

Let us introduce you Khem Raj Bhattarai, EqualPartners Product Development Expert. Send your product development-related questions to Sergey and receive a free consultation how to improve your product, how to arrange successful product development, how to manage software products, and any others.