In today’s connected business environment, you need to have the right software for your business. Choosing the right software to meet specific organizational needs benefits organizations significantly. To describe, these benefits include reduced overhead, improved processes, and increased revenue. The wrong software can cause big problems, which can include a lack of adoption by your staff. Also, businesses incur lost profits, time, and money trying to make software that’s less than perfect work seamlessly (or at all).
Even worse, the wrong or outdated software may have bugs that can temporarily bring your operation to a screeching halt. Worse still, the wrong or outdated software may be vulnerable to viruses and errors that may disrupt your system for days at a time.
If you’re going to hire a contractor or firm to design software for your business, you need to consider a few things beforehand. If you don’t, you run the risk of throwing money away on the wrong solution upfront and suffering the consequences of having an inappropriate solution in the short- and long-term.
Identify your needs
One of the biggest factors you should consider is why you need new software. How can you realistically expect to pick the best software for your organization if you don’t know the specific needs you want it to fill?
The key here isn’t just to identify your current needs. You need to think about what your company’s needs will be at least several years down the line. You don’t want to invest in software your business will outgrow quickly, a solution that isn’t versatile enough to adapt to changing conditions or software that isn’t scalable, after all.
Here are some questions you can ask yourself that may help you nail down your organization’s needs:
- Are you hoping to save money by having new software designed?
- What functions does the software need to perform?
- What are the ancillary capabilities that you want your software to have?
- Do you need certain features to have a higher level of functionality?
What are software design principles?
For developers, programmers, and software engineers, understanding the concepts of software design principles is vital for the success of different projects. Also known as Object-Oriented design principles, these principles enable software engineers to quickly find, adapt, and build on existing development projects without reconstructing different logic structures. From this idea, developers build on various paradigms, design patterns, and frameworks to prevent common coding errors and improve overall code maintenance.
Different types of different design principles
To continue, the software design principles consist of different methodologies and strategies to develop more reliable and structurally sound codes. From the list, these software design principles vary in applicability and allow programmers to build upon development projects around various business criteria and goals.
Single responsibility principle
For simple and functional design, the single responsibility principle assists software engineers with programming codes that best serve one particular function. In essence, programmers apply the single responsibility principle to balance development projects between several classes and responsibilities for each code function. As a result, data repositories cut in complexity as it reduces the number of future changes needed for particular code snippets that improve readability and functionality.
Commonly, the single responsibility principle best supports projects relevant to open-source software and applications. In detail, these systems support Java frameworks and specifications as the primary programming language. From this method, Java Persistence API specified software better standardize databases around mapping ideas that improve object classifications.
The open-closed principle enables software engineers to update dependencies from original codes. Typically, programmers build a primary framework that supports different independent program structures. More specifically, the independent programming structures design best support objects with routine functionalities. In other words, these designs allow software and applications to do routine tasks and update periodically.
As a benefit, open-closed principles prevent development teams to share codes as each structure is independent of the assigned framework. As a result, this ensures a “tight coupling” effect which better links programming functions with software interfaces. Within the process, the subclasses better rely on the details assigned to the parent classes and enforce uniformity throughout the framework. Also referred to as inheritance, when developers make changes on a single class, the changes adapt to all other dependent classes.
Liskov substitution principle
Next, the Liskov substitution principle is a software design principle that better organizes class setups to meet specific programming behaviors. In theory, the principle offers users the ability to start interacting with a superclass that breaks into subclasses with specific programming parameters. Between both classes, the superclass may incur more validation and strict regulations before users continue inputting data into subtypes. As the principles name suggests, the lack of programming regulations within subclasses offers more substitutions, or “swaps,” from within each dataset.
Moreover, when users follow-through with the specified guidelines within each subclass and super-type constructor, the program better implements behavior operations. As a downside, these projects require more developer involvement to build more validations for less regulated subclasses.
Interface segregation principle
Another software design principle is Interface segregation, the idea to limit the number of interfaces within a given repository. As a solution to interface pollution, this principle serves to design interfaces that better define client tasks without working outside already existing interfaces. In most instances, developers organize multiple classes within a central interface and then begin to segregate subclasses further based on certain dependencies.
In detail, the principle provides developers the ability to build extensions within central interfaces which separate dependencies. As a result, data reroutes to classes with additional functionalities without leaving the initial interface. This interface segregation principle better assists software engineers with applying and defining multiple functions and methods within independent interfaces.
Dependency inversion principle
Lastly, the dependency inversion principle assists developers with methods that consist of multiple low and high-level classes amongst different interfaces. Through the use of a single constructor, software engineers develop “implementation” using public methods to manage different program operations. In essence, the principle makes interface functions indifferent to class level and then distributes responsibilities to the fastest programming operation. As a solution to improving overall development structures functionality and runtime, software engineers refactor similar interfaces to perform common functions.
In terms of refactoring, the developers declare that high-class types depend on other high-class types when needed. As a result, the two interfaces within a repository undergo interchangeability functions. In this scenario, developers remove more dependencies between different programming components, maintain interface integrity, and coordinate better communication between functions and independent interfaces.
What are the pillars of object-oriented programming?
In addition to software design principles, software engineers follow pillars of object-oriented programming guidelines for more successful development projects. In general, the pillars follow principles of abstraction, encapsulation, inheritance, and polymorphism. Although these are the main pillars, object-oriented programming also consists of ideas around the division of responsibility which allows for cleaner and more robust code structures.
With abstraction, software engineers organize all components, constructions, and controllers within independent programming interfaces. Without abstraction, each programming sequence in the development undergoes independent dependencies which raise more complexities within projects. For better interface programming maintenance and implementations, the abstraction pillar generalizes complex processes within a codebase.
Also known as data hiding, the encapsulation pillar better orients development projects to better define responsibilities within code structures. In practice, applying encapsulation methods within development projects enables software engineers to limit user access to regions within databases that contain more sensitive and vital programming components. In this scenario, developers implement private properties known as “closures” to better secure high-level decencies while better defining the responsibility of particular functions.
Moreover, the encapsulation pillar recognizes the existence of more complex code structures within codebases and offers a solution for simplifying structures through modules. In essence, these modules allow for better connectivity between component functions and independent modules. As a result, software engineers better improve data binding protocols and methods within interfaces.
In the inheritance pillar, software engineers design components and objects to operate within relevant programming interfaces. In terms of reusability, this method eliminates unused processes while maintaining the full functionality of code structures. As a result, each of the dependencies during run-time relies on the extraction of data from the relevant files associated with each component function.
In the case that users input data into an unrelated field within a relevant task, a “type-error” usually occurs. To explain, these “errors” indicate that the communication between parent and child classes does not link as intended by the software engineer. Furthermore, the inheritance pillar ensures that the flow of inheritance from base object prototypes remains as the prominent source for how all other components inherit needed data.
From the principles of the inheritance pillar, the polymorphism pillar offers software engineers a model for sharing inheritance classes from one base prototype. In essence, code structure designs that follow polymorphism pillar rules offer users the ability to input data into codebases that return parent classes. As a result, the programming sequences better understand user behaviors to output relevant programming interfaces. As a benefit, the pillar ensures interchangeability between parent classes and offers software engineers more opportunities to refactor the significance of particular subclasses.
Object-oriented testing principles
In regards to object-oriented testing, software engineers rely on the performances and structural development of codebases to input-output data and enhance the functionality of various components, methods, variables, and dependencies. In detail, these testing principles refer to as fault-base, class, random, partitioning, and scenario-based testing procedures. First, Fault-Based Testing identifies design and code flaws within datasets which then leads software engineers to perform test cases to resolve issues. Secondly, Class Testing measures sub and supertype relations in regards to performance and functionality. From this test, software engineers review method sets within codebases.
Thirdly, Random Testing ensures the efficiency of programming operations and tests specific category behaviors. Fourth, Partitioning Tests perform separate test cases for input and output programming structures. As a result, this method ensures that software engineers may correct any flaws within specific code sequences. Lastly, Scenario-Based Testing diagnosis user interactions with codebases and then repeat processes throughout various implementations in development projects.
It wasn’t that long ago that Target and Home Depot made headlines for data breaches that compromised the financial information of a seemingly countless number of consumers. Since then, other big brands and entertainment providers have been hacked as well. The lesson you can learn from instances like these is that your software must be secure.
Unfortunately, making sure your software is secure isn’t enough. You need to make sure the company that designs your software has a solid reputation for security as well.
Here are some questions you may want to ask about a software design firm’s credentials as well as the security of the software the company produces:
- Is your company SOC certified?
- What kind of security options will the software you design for my business include?
- Will my software encrypt stored data? If so, at what level will my data be encrypted?
- With SSL and AES-128 no longer being enough, what kind of encryption techniques will you use?
Scrutinize the vendor
When choosing a software design company, it is essential to review a vendor’s reputation for security. You need to ensure that the company has the experience to design software for your industry, for example. If the firm does, you should ask whether designing software for your industry is the company’s core business. You should also consider how long a given firm has been in business. In most cases, design firms that lack lengthy history records may gain business trust due to the management behind the firm.
A vendor’s long-term goals are an important consideration, too. Some software design firms intend to be around for years or decades while others plan to be bought out by a larger outfit over time. As a helpful hint, design firms with potential merging’s into larger cooperation do not always place consumer interest first.
Ease of use
While you may be able to adopt new technology quickly, it doesn’t mean everyone on your payroll can. You need to make sure the software you get will be easy enough for your employees to use. Keep in mind that the more features your software have, the steeper the learning curve will be for your staff.
With vendor support, businesses gain more insights into how difficult certain software designs are to implement. From the vendor, clients ask for demos or trial periods in which users test software. Typically, businesses stay up-to-date on available software and software reviews to determine which system best supports business functions. As a solution, design firms assist businesses with choosing an easy-to-use software that best supports business operations.
Vendor support is an important business consideration when opting into software design. Typically, software design for business serves as the backbone of an operation. Be sure you pick a software design firm that will be able to resolve issues as quickly as possible. Make sure the vendor has the bandwidth to provide support during your hours of operation, too.
In terms of costs, businesses that opt into user-friendly software solutions best accommodate company goals. Moreover, the most expensive software options available do not always guarantee more reliability in terms of years. With that being said, you can control the final cost of your software somewhat by eliminating features you don’t need.
As a general rule, your software will be more expensive the more features it has. For businesses with strict budgets, the additional technological add-ons for software do not always satisfy business goals.
Overall, software design principles assist software engineers with identifying which programming logic to implement for different development projects. Software engineers rely significantly on working with codebases that integrate high code literacy within programming structures.
As a result, simpler code makes modifying, updating, and maintaining code performances easier. Lastly, developers incorporate various software design principles to better refactor code sequences within programming infrastructures that satisfy end-users.
Jhonathon believes in providing high-quality project management services. He currently works for Sunlight Media LLC in Downtown Los Angeles, California. As a Project Manager, Jhon collaborates with clients on website design and development, marketing, and creative solutions for campaigns. In addition to Project Management, Jhon is a content writer who writes articles that rank well on Google and other social media platforms. His skill sets include social media marketing, eCommerce, brand development, programming, web design, and graphic design.