Do you need to develop your project as quickly as possible? When time’s not your ally, you need to choose fast and foolproof methods.
Have you been disappointed with the waterfall method? Even though it has its advantages, it’s not fit for quick projects. Are you ready to implement agile methods? You don’t have to rely on traditional methods.
If your answer to all the questions is yes, then you should give rapid application development a shot!
What is Rapid Application Development?
Rapid Application Development (RAD) is a form of agile software development methodology that prioritises rapid prototype releases.
With rapid application development, developers can make multiple iterations and updates to software quickly.
RAD came into existence in response to the traditional waterfall model of development being not effective enough. Its main advantage over the former method is the ability to implement changes quickly, consequently reducing the time of development.
Advantages of RAD
If you want to profit from the numerous advantages of rapid application development, you must remember that it comes with some limitations. RAD works great for small teams and quick projects. Under these specific conditions, it can be a perfect solution.
- Requirements can be changed at any time – You don’t need to come up with a full and detailed vision of your product. You provide your software development team with a general overview of your ideas but can suggest changes to them at any given time.
- Encourages and priorities customer feedback – If engagement in the process of development is crucial for you, then RAD is just the right choice. Your feedback is an important source of insights and can influence your product.
- Reviews are quick – As your project is being constantly developed, there’s no need to spend too much time on in-depth reviews, as they are conducted regularly.
- Development time is drastically reduced – Since the entire project is divided into modules and each module is treated as a separate prototype the time spent in delivering is considerably reduced.
- Integration isn’t a problem – From the very beginning, all the modules of the application are integrated. It results in lesser issues in the final integration process. As all modules are properly synchronized from the very beginning, the risk of bugs is significantly reduced.
4 Phases of Rapid Application Development Methodology
Although RAD has changed over the years, these four basic steps remain the same.
Define the Requirements
In this phase, there’s no need to be specific. All you need to do is to provide your development team with broad requirements. As there’s no time to waste, you should focus on the most important aspects and present an understandable vision of your project.
Of course, there will be time for adding more details, but they will come later in the process. Right now, don’t bother with that.
Once you provided your development team with your ideas and requirements, you pass the baton to them. In this phase, developers create prototypes with different features and functions. It’s a race against time; they need to develop them as fast as they can.
Don’t worry, you’re not being sidelined here! You can follow the process and assess the proposed prototypes to, later on, provide your team with much-needed feedback.
If the last stage made you feel a little bit marginalised, now it’s your time to act! Once the prototypes are developed, your task is to discuss them with your development team. You can suggest alterations, changes, or even provide your team with new ideas.
Having your feedback in mind, developers continue prototyping. These two steps, prototyping and feedback, are repeated until the final product fulfills your requirements.
This is the implementation phase where the finished product goes to launch. Having implemented all the suggested changes and improvements, and following your suggestions, the software house proceeds to finalise the projects.
Once your product is finalised, the teams complete thorough documentation and perform other important maintenance tasks. Only then they can provide you with a complete product.
Fast and Successful Project Development
Why would I recommend choosing RAD as your software development methodology? Primarily, it can significantly speed up the development process of your project.
If you need your project done quickly, there’s no better option. Having established good cooperation with a software house, and by providing them with feedback, you can be sure that your project will turn out just fine.
Of course, RAD comes with some disadvantages and requirements, but in conducive conditions, it can work wonders!