Best Model for Accurate Iterative Software Development Budgeting
Let’s say that you already know what kind of software your company needs, and you’ve got the vision to solve your users’ problems, address their pain points, and provide valuable services. Well, now that you know what you want, the very first step to get your idea off the ground is to find the right enterprise software development company and create a budget.
Budgeting for iterative software development can be nerve-racking, especially when you consider the many factors that can significantly impact the software development cost. Nevertheless, it’s crucial for your company to figure out how much they're willing to invest in the enterprise software development process before getting started.
Despite all the stress that comes with budgeting, we hope that by the end of this article, you’ll have a clear understanding of how to identify and define various factors impacting software development cost, as well as how to successfully set sail on your software or application development expedition.
Whether it’s High Seas at the helm, or another company specializing in enterprise software and application development, our guide will help chart the course for a well-defined software development budget. We’re confident that with a well-planned iterative development process, your new software application venture will reach its intended final iteration on time and on budget.
What is the Iterative Software Development Model?
Iterative software development is an approach that breaks up an extensive application development process into smaller, more manageable parts, called iterations. Each iteration undergoes a standard development process of planning, design, development, and testing before moving on to the next iteration.
Our iterative software development life cycle (SDLC) model begins by focusing on creating a simplified version, or iteration, of a system. Subsequent iterations focus on different aspects of the project’s iterative development process, adding broader sets of features and becoming progressively more complex throughout the software development life cycle until the final software system is complete.
Check out our visual representation below to see how our iterative development process takes your vision for enterprise software development and transforms it into a viable product through subsequent iterations.
Why Should You Choose an Iterative Software Development Model?
There are many advantages of an iterative model when it comes to software development. For example, we often find that companies with a limited software development budget still need functional prototype software as early as possible, even if they don’t have the budget to meet the total software development cost at the project’s onset.
Sometimes a company may have a lack of available resources. Other times, they may want to see how the prototype functions to get an idea of how the final iteration will address their business needs when it finally leaves the production dock as a fully-fledged software system. The iterative model ensures each new iteration is an incrementally improved version of the previous iterations.
Iterative software development is incredibly flexible and can adapt rapidly to meet the needs of your company, their specific whims, and the ever-changing demands of the project itself. Each stage is scalable and can be adjusted to fit smaller time frames to suit the project or new requirements if suddenly the wind changes course and you need to go in a new direction.
High Seas utilizes a hybrid iterative and Agile model approach when setting sail on a new enterprise software development project. When you work with us, we give you the flexibility to redefine sprints as necessary to ensure maximum value at each stage of development.
Every two weeks, our hybrid development process gives you the opportunity to learn from previous iterations to update and re-prioritize project needs. This helps our crew help your crew use your software development budget most effectively for each new tack the project takes, whether planned or unplanned.
How to Budget for Iterative Enterprise Software
Not sure how to budget for an enterprise software development company? Lucky for you, our crew at High Seas has developed a set of software budgeting strategies, which you can find below. By following these strategies, you’ll be able to set your sails, weigh anchor, and get the expedition started in the right direction.
1. Create an Enterprise Software Development Plan
When preparing a budget for enterprise software or application development, it is critical to know your expectations. The more specific and detailed the information you provide to the navigators at High Seas, the more accurate your software development cost estimation will be.
Realistic, well-planned expectations facilitate more effective budgeting and a smoother voyage from concept to completion. Once the boat has left the dock, it can be increasingly difficult to budget for new features and other project additions or changes with iterative project management.
If you’d like more hands-on guidance with navigating your enterprise software development budget, our High Seas crew is available to discuss the total cost and sprint budget estimation. Visit our office in the San Francisco Bay Area or drop us a line—we’re ready to set sail with you anytime!
2. Get to Know Potential Software Value or Profit Estimation
One of the most impactful factors to consider when creating a software development budget is the value it will provide potential users.
First, you need to understand why someone would want to use your enterprise software and how it will integrate into other applications.
Another factor to consider is the expectation for revenue generated by your enterprise software. Expected revenue provides a perspective that will guide project goals and better facilitate a course for your project.
You can use estimation methods such as business case analysis or payback period calculation to accurately estimate your software’s value.
3. Analyze the Risk at Each Stage
Like any other type of business activity, effective iterative project management is dependent on successful navigation and planning for possible risks. It’s essential to identify any potential risks at the beginning of a software development stage because they can affect completion time, costs, and the project's final results.
Due to the potentially costly impacts these risks may have on your project development process, it’s best to appoint someone on your team to be the risk assessment manager. Their main task is to create a risk analysis and risk mitigation plan that helps your company avoid more considerable losses and issues during development.
Preparing for potential risks also ensures quicker course correction if the need arises, which will save you time and money.
4. Request a Detailed Cost Estimate
When planning your software development budget, request a detailed quote from your development team that includes the estimated number of hours required for each stage.
Here’s how the estimation process works when you choose High Seas for your enterprise software and application development:
- We start by dividing your goals and the project tasks into a list of pages, screens, and requirements. This breakdown of project requirements guides the iterative development process.
- Once we’ve received the detailed breakdown, the crew at High Seas leverages our experience on similar projects to estimate the hours of effort required for each scheduled task.
If your project has a large number of unknowns, the low- and high-end range may expand significantly.
To get a more accurate estimate of your software development cost, provide the development team with as much information as possible about what you’d like your software or application to achieve and your vision for its functionalities.
5. Add a “Safety Cushion” To Your Budget Estimation
It’s unusual for a project’s priorities to remain the same from concept to completion. We understand that things can change throughout the course of an enterprise software and application development project. This may be due to unforeseen functionality requirements, risks that had to be mitigated, or any number of reasons.
You should always be prepared for any additional costs, even if you’ve charted the safest, quickest course with your development team. Allocating some extra cash in your software development budget for these unanticipated costs can help you avoid financial stress down the line and keep your project on track.
Factors Affecting Enterprise Software Cost
Now that you know how to budget for iterative software development, here are some of the primary factors that may affect the total cost:
- Enterprise software complexity
- Total number of project sprints
- UI and UX design
- Cross-platform integration
- Amount of testing and quality assurance required
Brave The High Seas With Us For Your Next Expedition
The best plan for developing a software development budget is to provide whichever enterprise software development company you choose with as much information as possible about your project expectations. Unknown surprises and changes may become more and more difficult to budget for as time passes, which can impact completion time and expand project costs.
A collaboration with High Seas will provide you with expert guidance, thorough project analysis and planning, and a flexible development process that results in increasingly sophisticated design and functionality following each subsequent iteration. Your users and budget will thank you, and your company will end up with a passage-making enterprise software that will allow you to make each port of call on time and on budget. Let’s set sail together!