Do you have a project idea but, are always worried about the approach? Your worry ends here! In this article, we will understand Software development methodologies with their advantages and disadvantages. Different software development methodologies will help you choose the best approach for your next custom software development project.


Software and Applications require a systematic procedure for achieving a final outcome as a product. The process of software development includes the Integration of different rules, roles, and accurate practices for developing software.


What is a software development methodology?

The software development methodology is a systematic procedure that gives different product organization methods for software or application development. It is also known as the software development life cycle (SDLC). 




The SDLC method involves a process that a developing team has to follow. This is to fulfill the requirements of the project. During this phase developing team gets an estimation of project completion with timelines. Team also gets an idea of the respective changes in the requirements.


Let’s get into the different types of software development methodologies. 


1.  Agile Software Development Methodology

Agile software development is one of the most popular methodologies used by organizations. This approach has become a blueprint for a sophisticated software management process. There is a scope for frequent changes during the development of the project. 




The constant client feedback allows a team to develop the project in short spaces of time. These spaces of time will have different modules and this process is termed iteration. Iteration periods may vary from time to time. It can be one 1week, one 1month, or sometimes even 6 months, it all depends on the project complexity and client requirements. 

Advantages of Agile Methodology

  • Efficient adaptive approach
  • Client satisfaction and transparency in communication
  • Low-risk factors
  • Continuous releases of modules for client feedback
  • Easy debugging due to frequent Error detection
  • Early beta version release of the product 

Disadvantages of Agile Methodology

  • Documentation not efficient 
  • Not an ideal approach for freshers or inexperienced developers
  • Intense training is required for understanding the process
  • Difficult to  address project complexity in a bigger project
  • Break-in workflow results in inconsistency as the team loses track of the projects


2. DevOps  Software Development Methodology

DevOps is a combination of two terms: Development and operations. DevOps is gaining a lot of popularity over other methodologies due to the benefits it provides to customers. DevOps follows the philosophy of better communication and collaboration.




DevOps aims to cover the following steps.

  • Plan
  • Code
  • Build 
  • Test 
  • Release 
  • Deploy 
  • Operate 
  • Monitor 
  • Feedback


DevOps follows the development cycle as an infinite loop as portrayed in the image. So even if you are a new startup or a company the DevOps methodology will come in handy. 

Advantages of DevOps Methodology

  • Fast and frequent delivery of working project
  • Nice business growth 
  • Easy deployment  of a new process, system, or application 
  • Close interaction within the team reduces chances of fatal errors
  • Scope for continuous innovation 
  • Continuing  Integration 
  • Collaborative platform 
  • Minimum disruption 
  • Collaborative 
  • Accountability and ownership 

Disadvantages of DevOps Methodology

  • Cultural change: A restart button to any business
  • Lots of human interaction is necessary
  • Extensive testing 
  • Certified developers required
  • Speed and security process is hectic


3. Waterfall Model  Methodology

Waterfall methodology is considered a classic model for the software development process. This model has a sequential flow. This means all the phases are to be approached after the complete execution of the previous phase. 




Example: Until the project requirements are not gathered and analyzed. The team cannot move to the next phase of development which is design. 


From the example, we can conclude that each phase needs 100% perfection. Once the phase is tagged final no reversible modifications are allowed at any point.


This traditional methodology is difficult in approach so it is also known as a Rigid linear model. 

Advantages of Waterfall Methodology

  • Best approach for clear project definition 
  • Easy to understand 
  • Suitable for small teams and businesses
  • Simple Analysis and  testing 
  • Fix deadline
  • Time-saving 

Disadvantages of Waterfall Methodology

  • Requirements need to be precise
  • No going back for modification
  • Not suitable for complex  projects
  • Difficult to predict the outcome before delivery
  • Client feedback becomes irrelevant once development starts
  • Documentation is time-consuming


4. Scrum Software Development Methodology 

Scrum development methodology can literally be used in all types of projects. This methodology begins with brief planning, a meeting, and then a final review (conclusion). The scrum approach is best suitable when the requirements are not clear. 




The client gives inputs and suggestions on the prototypes developed. This speeds up the development process. 


There is no doubt that scrum is one of the best because it can transform a slow project into a fast progressing project.

Advantages of Scrum Methodology

  • The developing team has authority in the decision making 
  • Frequent prototype release
  • Regular meetings 
  • The customer feedback review process is fast
  • Quality End-product 
  • Easy error detection 
  • Modifications can be made
  • Documentation is not required due to the flexible nature of projects

Disadvantages of Scrum Methodology

  • Too many modifications can delay the project 
  • Constant client interaction is necessary
  • Team composition keeps changing


5. Prototype Development Methodology 

Prototype methodology allows the freedom to create a prototype version of the solution to demonstrate the basic functionalities to a client. This shows the client how the product will look and work after its complete development. 




The required changes after the prototype display can be easily done. The unique feature of this methodology is that it compensates for certain issues in the traditional waterfall model.

Advantages of Prototype Methodology

  • Prototype display for client satisfaction
  • Early identification of potential risks involved
  • Modification based on new given requirements within the scope
  • A clear idea of the project 
  • Better client communication

Disadvantages of Prototype Methodology

  • Budget issues ( prototype built is at the expense of organization )
  • Early prototype visual makes client wanting the End-product soon 
  • Clients are way deeply involved which is not good from the developers perspective
  • Not suitable for projects requiring  frequent modification


6. Rapid application development (RAD) Methodology

The objective behind RAD methodology is to maximize the scope of a project and speed up the software development process. It appears to be much faster in developing and delivering a high-quality product.




The developers highly use the benefits of this methodology. The four steps which make up the methodology: requirement gathering, user design, developing, and switch over. The two-process user design and development are prototyping so the developer repeats this step till the client agrees. 

Advantages of RAD Methodology

  • Easy to utilize
  • Good for reducing risk 
  • Less effort requirement from developer
  • Easy feedback response from the client
  • High functionality provided
  • Best suitable for small and medium-scale projects     

Disadvantages  of RAD Methodology

  • Requires strong team structure
  • Not for low budget projects
  • Hard to keep track of progress and problems
  • Works only on modularized systems 
  • High team dependency 

7. Spiral Model Methodology

Spiral model is considered a sophisticated model. Combination of the Agile and waterfall models, this methodology focuses on early risk detection and reduction.




Developers start on a small scale and explore various risks. After the risk assessment, they plan a risk management strategy and finally take the next step of the project in the spiral iteration. The performance of this methodology depends on the management strategy of the team.

Advantages of Spiral Methodology

  • Fewer  risk factors
  • Good for large scale and critical projects
  • Functionalities can be added in later stages
  • Fast development
  • Features are systematically added 
  • Easy cost estimation
  • Quality products are developed

Disadvantages of Spiral Methodology

  • Low budget projects can’t be made
  • Expensive Model 
  • Risk analysis is the backbone if not done properly project will collapse


8. Feature-Driven Development (FDD) Methodology

Feature Driven Development (FDD) is an iterative methodology for software development. FDD is for a team of a large number of members using object-oriented programming concepts. Further FDD can be understood by 5 phases: 

  • Build an overall model
  • Create a list of features 
  • Scheduling of the features
  • Plan by feature
  • Design by feature



Monitoring the status at each stage is a good practice to avoid fatal errors.

Advantages of FFD Methodology

  • Rapid system development 
  • Multiple teams can work together
  • Time efficient
  • Manage big scale projects and get repeatable success

 Disadvantages of  FFD Methodology

  • Not suitable for individual project 
  • High dependency on team leader and project manager
  • No proper documentation for client


9. Extreme programming (XP) Methodology 

Extreme Programming methodology is agile and focuses on developing high-quality applications, also known as the XP methodology. It is mainly utilized for developing software in an unstable environment. The primary intent of the XP methodology is to reduce the cost of software requirements. 




XP methodology focuses on a series of principles rather than the steps. These principles include simplicity, collaboration, and consideration.

Advantages of Extreme Programming Methodology

  • Cost-efficient 
  • Priority: planning & scheduling
  • Suitable for both small and  large teams
  • Risk management
  • High transparency
  • Best suitable for the unstable environment
  • High-quality  software
  • Customer involvement 
  • Consistent with Modern application development     

Disadvantages of Extreme Programming Methodology

  • Frequent meetings require
  • Extreme focus on code, design is neglected
  • Lots of changes while developing 
  • Uncertainty regarding the future outcome 

10. Lean Development Methodology 

The lean methodology prioritizes easily manageable and changeable applications. This model is actually more focused than any other agile methodology. How? Well, it manages the development process with a minimal budget, limited time constraints, and a very little amount of time. 



Advantages of Lean Methodology

  • Fast software development process
  • Budget control 
  • Early release of the product
  • Suitable for new startups
  • Great flexibility 
  • High-quality product
  • Improves decision making 

Disadvantages of Lean Methodology

  • Having a business analyst on the team is necessary
  • Project relies highly on the team 
  • Focus shifts from original objective due to excessive flexibility


11. Joint Application Development (JAD) Methodology

Joint application development methodology is for developing standard user interfaces in which end-users, stakeholders, and engineers hold intense of-site sessions to extract the details and finalize the application.

This methodology intends to involve the client in the design and development of an application. Here more emphasis is laid on resolving business-related issues rather than technical. 



 Advantages Of JAD Methodology

  • Suitable for business systems
  • Client–company collaboration reduces risks involved
  • Forum for multiple points exploration
  • Well defined requirements provide  improved system quality 
  • Organizer assistance (Resolves any conflict)
  • Information system is produced in a short period of time

Disadvantages JAD Methodology

  • A large amount of time is consumed H
  • High skilled engineers are required
  • Conflicts within the team hinders the progress


12. Incremental Model Methodology 

In incremental methodology, software development is divided into multiple standalone modules. Here each module goes through the requirements analysis, design, implementation, and testing phase.

Every subsequent module adds functionality to previous modules. This continues till the end-product is achieved.

This model is used when requirements are superior and lengthy schedule for the project.



Advantages of Incremental Model 

  • Easy error recognition 
  • Debugging is simple
  • Flexible
  • Risks are handled during iteration
  • Client has important functionality in the early stages for use

Disadvantages of Incremental Model 

  • Cost rises with each iteration
  • Good planning required
  • Well defined module interface required


On a final note we can say that you can have a thorough inspection and decide which is the best possible approach for your project. The article is just a representation of basic outline for the methodologies. These methodologies have deep roots in different processes that are hard to imagine. 


But hey,


Do you feel like getting a quote for your project? What are you waiting for? 


Get in touch  with your idea and our experts will get you your quote.


Published On: February 21st, 2022 / Categories: Software / Tags: , /

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