Whenever a client wants to develop software for his/her business, one person do-it-all is often unlikely. Nomos One Lease Accounting Software experts states that the world of software development is vast, with different technologies, tools, and programming languages employed for various purposes in a single software, making it difficult for one person to see the project through. There are many programs and processes in developing a product that one person cannot handle. Therefore, software companies are prompted to create interdisciplinary development team structures comprising various sub-teams and specialists to play the required roles in a project. The software development team is key to the success of any project.
The software company needs to minimize pot ential blind spots and unnecessary processes that could potentially waste time in the middle of a project. The success and efficiency of the team are achieved by clarifying workflow, set boundaries of responsibility, and communication methods from the beginning of the project.
Roles in The Software Development Teams
Software development companies in USA, sometimes outsourced overseas, often divide the teams into eight important personnel with different roles. These roles are as below.
Product Owner (PO)
The product owner is the person having the product’s vision and is often tasked with conveying the idea to the team. The C-level executive will introduce PO to the team after hearing from him on the value of the project. The PO bridges the stakeholders and the team. The product owner is also tasked with formulating a list of functionalities. He will also prioritize and reprioritize the project’s features that harmonize with the business objective and strategy. His main objective is to deliver quality to the project. If the PO is absent in a project, it will result in many problems such as workflow, missed deadlines, unclear requirements, and frustration.
Project Sponsor (provider)
The project sponsor is the one who funds the project. He/she should be a person in the management that can take on a financial decision such as approving all additional expenses incurred when developing the project. The sponsor often examines emerging issues and requests to aid in resolving financial conflicts and obstacles. If the sponsor does not have the authority or has limited authority to approve the additional expenses, the project may come to a halt.
Stakeholders (interested parties)
The stakeholders include people internal and external of the project apart from the team. They are interested in the project’s goals, outcomes, and impact on the outside world. Anybody influenced by the project’s outcome or those who take in the project form part of stakeholders. They are split into three main categories:
Primary stakeholders– These are either negatively or positively affected individuals by the outcomes or the project’s decision directly. They include top managers, shareholders, strategic partners.
Secondary stakeholders– These are people indirectly interested in the project and are influential. They comprise vendors, clients, creditors, and the government.
The team will focus on most important stakeholders and consider their opinion; otherwise, the project may not launch if all opinion is considered. They play important roles in the project as early as possible and remain interested throughout the project
The project manager (PM)
The PM is tasked with planning, organizing, and overseeing all phases of the project. He manages all communication by answering questions dealing with what, who, why, and when on the project. He also manages the risks involved, the project’s resources, financial performance, communication with stakeholders, and the entire team to focus on the project’s success. Many software development companies in the USA developing agile projects such as Scrum use a Scrum Master instead of a PM. A Scrum master differs slightly from a PM in that it shares responsibilities rather than a PM that tend to own the project.
Business Analyst (the explorer)
Business Analysts (BA) helps in translating business opportunities that are satisfied by the project requirements. The BA is tasked with anticipating and extracting project requirements. He/she transforms business needs to be included in the project’s technical requirements. Read more.
User Interface (UI) focuses on how the software is laid out and the end users’ interaction with the product. The UI designer turns the written idea into a visual project. He/she participates in formulating the project’s graphic designs, prototype, and UI elements. He should collaborate with the development team and business representatives.
Front-end and back-end developers
They are often called the magic masters as they code to transform the project requirements and idea into a product that works. The whole team relies on them as they influence the time needed to complete the project fully. The front-end developer builds what the user sees and ensures a smooth experience while using the application. However back-end developer often referred to as chief technological problem-solver, writes sophisticated algorithms and application that makes the software magic happen behind the scene.
Quality Assurance Engineers
Some software development companies in often have a quality assurance engineer that puts a stamp of approval on whether the development product meets the business requirements. They do the final touch on the product by ensuring no errors, bugs, or defects on the programs. Some clients choose not to include them in the project to cut on cost, but QA helps save costs by eliminating potential costly errors.
The Bottom Line
Software development is not a one man show. It requires a coordination of various parties owing to the complexity of the IT world. A client should do due diligence when selecting a software development company by also considering the team’s efficiency and budget. However, budget is not often given a primary concern if it is placed above quality. Proper coordination and role defining among the development team are essential to ensuring project success. Therefore, a client will be interested in coordination and communication (information flow) if the project at hand is to be delivered successfully on time.