7 Critical Software Development Risks And Overcoming Them

by Alex Mansour

3 years ago · 4 min read

Underestimating software development risks is a big mistake. Management of a software development project, and is responsible for it is not easy. Many different challenges can also show up while working on software projects. It depends on the type of the project, the technologies used, and the management methodologies. 

software development

We will analyze some of the most significant risks to look out for when developing a software project. It may be a web app, mobile app, PC software, or a website. 

Unmatching expectations 

When developing a software project, estimations are needed to identify the project’s timeframe and budget. It should be accurate enough and should also have a margin of extension to deliver as promised.

Any changes in these estimations mean the project will take more. As a result, it will cost more money, creating problems between clients and agencies.

An agency that wants to deliver the client’s expectations needs to estimate budgets and time frames to accurately keep their word.

We need to break up projects into different phases. Thus, ensuring that we keep the expectations of our clients and not changing the estimations. For instance, research should always get the needed time estimated separately. 

We also need to ensure adding some extra time for any expected errors or problems may occur.

Low-quality code 

Code is one of the biggest assets of a software project. If code has low quality, it can be a major risk for developers and executives. What makes it an overwhelming risk is that it takes time to show up. 

Bad code can be very hard to review and make changes by future developers. It can then cause much more futuristic trouble.

This is called technical debt. In the long run, the company becomes burdened with these changes to make the code better and to understand or extend it.

To make high-quality code, coding standards, and guidelines are set prior to the project’s start. The project manager needs to continue monitoring the quality of the code to ensure those standards were applied. 

Lack of talents 

If a company lacks talents during the development of top-notch software, then it can put the project at risk.

What makes this more complicated is that the talents can leave at any moment. The project team structure should be powerful enough so that it will not be affected by such leaves or resignations. 

Hiring top talents and keeping them motivated and satisfied is a very big part of the software development process. 

Changing features 

Changing any feature in the software can be a big risk during its development. One changed feature can make the developers unable to follow the expected time frame causing bigger troubles.

A changed feature can also have an impact on other features and capabilities in the software. Thus, leading to unexpected errors and more work. Or worse, adding whole new features or modules. 

That is why features are listed and agreed upon from the start. A professionally managed software project will have goals listed. In addition, the priority of each feature to determine which work gets finished first. 

If you know what you need with each feature and its priority. Then it is much less likely to add features while working on the software and cause trouble to every side.   

Lack of user feedback 

Releasing software without having any clues on whether users are going to like it or not is one of the biggest risks of software development. 

user feedback

It is important to test the software before the release. That is to ensure there is no gap between you and the users. The design should have the latest UI and UX trends, not to feel old or outdated.

It is important to scale the project at a slower pace to be released as soon as possible. A software MVP can help you determine the core features and get them to the market as soon as possible to gather more feedback.

Unclear responsibilities 

Certain people should be completely responsible for certain aspects of the software project. Or they could be risking the whole project. 

Clear communication is the key to continuously ensure that all parties are aligning. Documentation is also essential to keep everything with proofs and prevent any trouble. 

Degraded productivity 

Unlike humans, codes are written words on the computer, and humans are complicated, they feel bored and unmotivated. At some point, the team’s productivity starts degrading clearly, which bid another development risk to look out for.

Of course, part of this is hiring the right people from the start. Those who suit the work environment and needs. However, it is important to keep employees motivated and engaged to stay productive. You can learn more on how to keep employees productive when working remotely on our blog. 

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