Do you need software specification for your project

In our articles, we spend a lot of time on technical issues, because this is one of the main points and stumbling blocks in any technically complex project. Although why only in a complex one – in any project. This is due to the fact that often communication flows in not the entirely technical way, more – in kind of “manager” way. Both from the customer side and from the side, for example, a mobile app development company. Yes, technical people or developers are also involved in this process, but on the other hand, namely, in discussing the issues of how the product should be, what functions to have, how to develop, and so on. But the first line of communication between representatives of the company, however, remain managers.

A logical question is emerging: what qualities and knowledge should such a specialist possess? Can the manager be effective if he does not know all the subtleties of development? Of course, if you ask the question in this vein, then someone may have doubts, but let’s take a look at everything from the other side. Should the manager know how to write code for Android or iOS if he / she works in mobile development? It would be nice but not necessary because the work of developers will be checked by a technical lead, and the manager must at the same time monitor the deadlines and the implementation of the necessary functionality. The main question that should be asked is whether the application will be ready on time and whether it will be of the proper quality.

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So, do you need software specification for your project? From this point of view, definitely you do and we will try to explain why.

Software specification

Software specifications for mobile development in this respect, practically does not differ from similar approaches in development for desktops, etc. But first things first. Let’s find out what exactly “software specification documents” is. Here I will make a small reference to Wikipedia, as a resource worthy of respect. But in turn, the concept described there has some theoretical meaning, I’ll try to describe how this happens IRL and whether there are differences.

technical-specifications-document

Software specification is a description (desirably detailed and full, but it is nominal, in practice, it does not always happen so for many reasons) of the future software that needs to be developed. In this document, the requirements are declared – both functional and nonfunctional, and, if you are very lucky, the options for user cases can be included. For example – a description of some user interaction with the system, or how it should look \ work.

Globally, this document creates some kind of support for concluding a contract (or conducting an examination) between the contractor and the customer. In general, it is a little more complicated, because even third parties can participate in the development process, but to a large extent,  it does not play a special role in the understanding of this term.

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Let’s move forward. Why is this necessary? Such a document prescribes certain expectations of what the final product should do. The specification allows you to evaluate the requirements for the product at the beginning of the development process, thus, affect all stages of development in the future. A well-written document allows you to minimize edits and remove inconsistencies, which may not be obvious when the project is in the “idea” stage.

With the right and proper approach, software specification documents can and should help in the evaluation and analysis of the product. And also to some extent, they can help find the bottleneck of the whole system, because of which the project or application can just do not go into production or fail in the end.

Which of the parties is more interested in the existence of specifications? The question is not entirely relevant because most often the presence of specifications implies further cooperation. And if at this moment you thought: “Okay, I have an idea and some options for its implementation, but there is no such document, can’t I hire a developer to create it?”. Of course, you can and will be right in your decision. But it is worthwhile to understand one thing – the mobile app specifications document will be made in any case. If you do not have it, it will be done on the contract acceptor’s side, or they will help you find a contractor who will make an examination and draw up such document.

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Summing up, what should we remember? In the ideal case, mobile app specifications document must carry the product requirements, which should be sufficient for the development of the project. Thus, all use cases need to be thoroughly described. As a result, specifications will be users by designers to create user interface design and as a guide for developers who need to stick to it during the development process.

Technical specifications document sample

If you do not have a detailed specification, you can write an analog that can speed up the creation of a full-fledged document. Then it is worthwhile to know that the technical specifications document sample should include such parameters that would allow:

• To understand the essence of the task (for the company you want to hire). This will greatly simplify the process of requirements analysis;

• You, as the customer – to clear up what is needed and what should be the basic functionality of the future application;

software-specification

Requirements definition helps and regulates the relationship:

• Allows the front office to implement and rebuild their processes for a specific task and to build a plan, prepare a preliminary analysis;

• Allows the customer to check and require correspondence between the items described in the document and what exists in reality. In this way it helps to protect yourself;

• In turn, a document with specifications can be appealed by the executor, if it is required to implement additional, previously not described functions;

• Helps all the parties in the evaluation of the product and its verification for compliance.

Is software specification document necessary?

Speaking of real work, what can be dangerous in working without an exact specification? On the side of the executor, this can lead to an endless stream of edits or critical changes that could lead to failure. Imagine that, at the final stage of development, it suddenly became extremely important to change several functions that are responsible for the operation of the entire system and are integrated into the code left, right and center? The result of such corrections can be a completely new product, spoiled time, delivery time and the relationship between the developer company and the customer’s company. None of the above options are acceptable.

On the other hand, if there is no detailed task, the developer is free to interpret the customer’s words in a way convenient for him. This can lead to an increase in the time and cost. But the saddest thing is that such a product may not meet the customer’s expectations.

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As a result, the technical specifications document regulate not only the technical aspects but also the relationships between different parties, involved in the development process. I hope that now you definitely will not have a question “is software specification document necessary”.

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