Most of us tend to conclude as Waterfall projects being slower and riskier if the market is uncertain and more expensive than Agile. But wait!! Do not let yourself be influenced by the opinion of most people who are biased, to begin with. As you can observe, Waterfall isn’t all bad and Agile isn’t all good. So why not pick the best of both and blend the two methodologies? They’re addressed as either Agifall or Wagile methods and are now becoming the preferred choice for global organizations. Mature and efficient enterprises understand when to apply each of these methods. We at Hiteshi Infotech counsel all three models depending on what you want to achieve.
Since the time of Industrial Revolutions, the Waterfall Model has been a widely accepted technique for software development. Often considered the classic approach to the systems development life cycle, the waterfall model describes a development method that is linear and sequential. Here the software development process is divided into different steps, and each step comprises a series of tasks with different objectives.
HOW IT WORKS
This very first phase deals with requirements that are not related to the product itself but rather with business-relevant aspects such as price and availability, primarily covering the documentation and safety aspects. This part is to gather the non-functional requirements.
The functional specifications for the software to be developed are defined in this phase. What and how of software’s functions is portrayed here, which also includes the results of the first phase.
This phase dissects the functions of the software and is structured so as to separate the individual elements and functional units. Here the experts check to the feasibility and importance of the functions. This phase results in more precise specifications containing the requirements that need to be developed.
With the help of Requirement Specification, the technical design is implemented. This phase includes the plans about information architecture and applied technologies such as programming languages, class libraries, and program sequences. The result of the program design is usually recorded in diagrams describing the theoretical behavior of the software.
At the time of Implementation, structures and workflows are implemented considering the systemic framework conditions and objectives. The software design becomes a program that is directly related to an operating system, one or more programming languages, and the infrastructure. A result is usually an operational software, often termed as a beta version.
The implementation phase is followed by the testing of all software components, modules, as well as the entire system. Integration into specific operating systems is also checked. If errors and conflicts occur, they must be solved immediately. Such could lead to an increase in overall costs since possible errors can be attributed to different phases and are not always caused by the previous phase.
The software is implemented after acceptance by the client. Updates and maintenance may be necessary before the product enters a store or is delivered to the customer.
- While the waterfall model has seen a slow phasing out in recent years in favor of more agile methods, it can still provide some benefits, particularly for larger projects and organizations that require the stringent stages and deadlines available within these cold, cascading waters.
- This model is simple and easy to understand and use.
- It is easy to manage due to the rigidity of the model – each phase has specific deliverables and a review process.
- In this model, phases are processed and completed one at a time. Phases do not overlap.
- Waterfall model works well for smaller projects where requirements are very well understood.
- While some things in software development never really change, many others often fall by the wayside. While the initial proposal of waterfall model was groundbreaking when first published back in 1970, over four decades later, many cracks showed in the armor of this once heralded model.
- Once an application reaches the testing stage, it is complicated to go back and change something that was not well-thought out in the concept stage.
- No working software is produced until late during the life cycle.
- It contains high amounts of risk and uncertainty.
- Not a good model for complex and object-oriented projects.
- Poor model for long and ongoing projects.
- Not suitable for the projects where requirements are at a moderate to high risk of changing.
The waterfall is a perfect choice for your Software Development IF:
- This model is used only when the requirements are very well known, definite and fixed.
- Product definition is stable.
- Technology is understood.
- There are no ambiguous requirements
- Ample resources with required expertise are available freely
- The project is short