Each phase in the life cycle of software development has its own process and deliverables that feed into the next phase.  There are typically 4 phases starting with the analysis and requirements gathering and ending with the implementation.  Let’s look in greater detail at each phase:

Requirements Gathering/Analysis

This phase is critical to the success of the project.  Expectations (whether of a client or your team) need to be fleshed out in detail and documented.  This is an iterative process with much communication taking place between stakeholders, end users and the project team.
In a corporate setting, this means looking at your customers, figuring out what they want, and then designing what a successful outcome would look like in a new bit of software.


Technical design requirements are prepared in this phase by lead development staff that can include architects and lead developers.  The Business Requirements are used to define how the application will be written.  Technical requirements will detail database tables to be added, new transactions to be defined, security processes and hardware and system requirements.


This phase is the actual coding and unit testing of the process by the development team.  After each stage, the developer may demonstrate the work accomplished to the Business Analysts and tweaks and enhancements may be required.  It’s important in this phase for developers to be open-minded and flexible if any changes are introduced.  This is normally the longest phase of the SDLC.  The finished product here is input to the Testing phase.


Once the application is migrated to a test environment, different types of testing will be performed including integration and system testing.  User acceptance testing is the last part of testing and is performed by the end users to ensure the system meets their expectations.  At this point, defects may be found, and more work may be required in the analysis, design or coding.  Once sign-off is obtained by all relevant parties, implementation and deployment can begin.