Understanding the Importance of Documentation in Software Development

Software development is a task that needs expert developers, testers, coders, managers and more. One cannot argue that it is a critical task and needs everything managed and well-operated to get the development going smooth. While we have already elucidated the importance of all essential requirements in software development, there is one section that impacts the development the most.

We are talking about documentation. It is one such process that defines the overall stages of software application development. Developers need these documentations to ensure that they are aware of the overall development process and how they need to plan further in case some modifications are planned. This is one such practice that is neglected by various software development companies. However, many know how important this practice is and how it could elevate the performance of the development company.

Before we proceed on to what is the benefits of software development documentation, we shall give you a gist about the types of documentation during the process of software development.

1) Rules of Documentation

There are various business rules associated with a documentation process. Any new addition to the software development needs to be aware of these rules. The rules of documentation ensures that these new additions or beginners have an understanding of business rules, regulations, processes, hierarchy, authority, FAQs, user guide, approval cycle and more. It helps them to adapt to their software development environment faster and easier.

2) Troubleshooting Documentations

Many technical errors creep in during software application development process. To cater to such challenges, troubleshoot documentation helps developers fix the production challenges. Many error codes hamper the development process. A developer can take the help of troubleshooting documentation or refer to the coding practices as mentioned in the documents created by the developed to find and remove the issue. There could be a FAQ section in the documentation that FAQ deals with general or usual issues. The error documentation should be detailed and crisp so that it is easily understood.

3) Code Documentation

Codes are an essential part of any software development. It can also be called as the backbone of the entire software application development. It explicates the step-by-step process of application development for developers to have a proper and detailed understanding of the application development. Thus, code documentation is a must for the development of any software application. It is mostly segregated into multiple parts.

  • Comment Block: File explaining classes, methods, parameters, possible errors.
  • Specific file documentations: Generated by a third-party script that will analyze a particular file and create an explicit PDF.
  • Code repository: Information regarding file updates its relocated place.

Other types of documentation include server environments, database, files, application installation, etc.

Always look for a reliable software development company that follow the documentation process diligently. Now that we have given a basic scenario of what types of documentation are available, let’s begin with the benefits of having the documentation practice in the development of an application.

1) Support

The top reasons why documentation is needed in software application development is the support that it invites for the development. The developers can learn a great deal of application by simply looking at the documentation. Requirement specifications, goals, errors, troubleshooting all could be learned by scrolling the documentation and plan for changes in the application accordingly. It acts as a cheat sheet for the developers in developing an application. It’s the best help when any critical projects, errors, bugs come up and need detailed support accordingly.

2) Communication

During the application development, the developers working on the project may be on leave or not available. What could be done to make necessary amendments in the application? This could easily be handled by having documentation in place. Even in the absence of the employee, developer, testers, coders, documentation can give insights into the development process and thoroughly help the team to get through the challenge. It’s effective communication that brings out the best in everybody, even in the absence of the person.

3) Repeat Success

It’s really hard for developers to continue developing apps that are a success in the market. The team has to toil hard to make sure that their development process is error-free and epic for users. Any miss or challenge in sing the application could lead to the abandonment of the app real soon. This could be avoided by the use of all available documentation with the team. They can follow the procedures that has proved to be a success in the past. By doing so, they can ensure that future projects too have good value and rapport in the market amongst users. Proper documentation can also help resolve varied issues such as error in quickbooks, bugs in the software and so on.

Conclusion

One may think that documentation is not that important, but that does not stand true at all! Documentation has already been an essential part of an agile development framework and most companies following the framework adhere to it. They seek documentation to manage their time, project, process, operations, development all in one go. Documentation has proved to be a vivid idea in processing the development process. Developers have big support of documentation in making sure that application turns out to be perfect, vigilant, error-free and vibrant.

Siya Carla

Siya Carla is the Solution Consultant at Finoit Technologies, a leading custom software development company which provides unique web design and mobile app development services. By creating interactive mobile apps for 450+ customers across the globe, Finoit enjoys a great reputation as a prominent mobile app development company.

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