Software Development
May 17, 2022

6 Software Development Mistakes You Should Avoid at All Costs

6 Software Development Mistakes You Should Avoid at All Costs

6 Software Development Mistakes You Should Avoid at All Costs

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Good software developers are there to solve issues that can’t be fixed in any other way. You are often given a lot of opportunities to be free with how and what you create, it can range from stock management, to shop inventory software

Many issues come with the job. You have to be able to work with different teams and communicate in a manner of different ways. It’s common to make mistakes, but there are often easy solutions that can help to alleviate some of the difficulties which come with working in software. 

This guide is here to make you aware of some of the mistakes that you can make as a software developer to make it easier to avoid them. It will also give you some solutions to them. 

  1. Misunderstanding the Product or Idea

Being a software developer, you understand that you often work on varied projects. This means that you need a good understanding of many different industries. 

Finance, healthcare, and human resources all require a different approach in the way that you develop software. There are varied requirements and you need to be able to adapt and change to suit the brief. 

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Developing software that works in one of these industries and not the other is an easy mistake to make. To overcome this issue, it is an extremely good idea to ensure you ask the right questions and research the background of the project. 

Errors are expensive to fix when it comes to writing code, and your partners will appreciate you being aware of what the project needs to ensure success in the desired market. 

Software development isn’t just about writing what somebody wants. It also requires creativity and flair. Knowledge of the product and market will help you add individuality to your developments and provide a service that is informed and dedicated to introducing new and exciting ideas in a relevant manner. 

Ensure that you are working closely with the teams whose ideas you are implementing in order to reduce misunderstandings. It can help to explore the application of their ideas and whether they are relevant or necessary to the issue they are trying to solve. 

  1. Making Assumptions

Another simple but easy way to avoid a mistake is making decisions independently, which may cause issues further down the line. 

Software developers come across issues all the time when writing new software. As a software developer, you will be well versed in tackling these problems head-on; creating solutions independently and improving your independent development skills. However, simply assuming that the company wants the issue solved in a particular way can create huge issues down the line. 

Sometimes, we need to guess to overcome problems quickly and easily. It shows that we take initiative and want to move around obstacles without creating more problems. 

The key here is to try and remove as much of the guesswork as you can. Yes, it’s easy to fix a small issue alone, but in the long run, asking questions and being aware of how your actions are going to impact the project in the future is beneficial. Conversations with mentors can help you prioritize and maintain clarity.

There are experts available to contact in every field if you need extra guidance. Using your team to consult on these problems also opens the conversation and allows solutions to be discussed and worked on together. 

The takeaway here is never to assume that you know what your manager needs. Expectations change and are different, so what may work initially, may not further down the line.

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  1. Lack of Communication

Issues arise frequently when developing new software. But blaming ‘lack of communication’ is a business buzzword phrase. What does it mean and how can you combat it? 

When writing software, it can be easy to focus on your particular issue and work through it. We’ve all experienced it, a feeling that we don’t need to inform anyone of our next steps because we have it all under control. 

Improving how you communicate can be challenging. VoIP is a great piece of software to help you communicate more effectively. Guides such as ‘what is VoIP’ will help you understand and implement this software. 

In reality, it’s extremely important to be open and transparent when it comes to any decision or change. It is vital to keep information focused and clear. Meetings can often become aimless and result in fractured communication channels, so concentrate on how they are run. 

Furthermore, it creates an environment where your colleagues are interested and focused on sharing new ideas. When your team is happy and ready to involve themselves in these conversations, it can be a great platform for improvement and enhancing the direction of your project. 

P.S. If you’re setting up meetings, a secret tip is buying pizza, it’s a great way to people’s hearts. 

  1. Jargon Barriers
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This form of the project brings together people from the business and tech worlds. This creates new challenges. 

Barriers often develop when communicating between these worlds. These issues can dilute meaning and create more challenges. 

Here are some areas to focus on to help improve communication:

  • As a techie, try not to use too much jargon and request the same from the business side of the project. This makes emails and conversions more effective and efficient.
  • Try to explain your technical terms and decisions in a clear, concise way so business-minded people can understand the information.
  • Avoid words that have different meanings between tech and business. This avoids unnecessary confusion and improves efficiency. 

Concentrating on how you communicate and the language that you use is highly effective. Reduce jargon and share information clearly and you’ll experience improvements in personal or employee productivity and understanding. Furthermore, employees on all sides will appreciate the ability to cooperate and function as a team.

  1. Lacking Context for Assignments
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When developing new software, you need to ensure that you have context surrounding the software to ensure it is fit for purpose and works. 

Imagine you need to work on developing a product that works in tandem with ‘single pane of glass’ software. It is helpful to understand and know what the product is by looking at guides like what is single pane of glass? The context around the product you need to create will aid your understanding and end product. It can help make a more fluid environment and improves how you share and develop projects over time. 

There are two ways this issue can be approached. Firstly, it may be that you look at the goal you are trying to reach and why it is important to get there. This allows for more freedom in your projects and more exploration available. The second way is to have everything planned and tracked. This allows for clarity and gives clear direction, but ultimately there is no room for movement or changes. 

So is one better than the other? Well, being allowed to understand the reasons behind the project often offers context to the situation. The question ‘why?’ gives us more information. Promoting and putting value on the query can enhance the knowledge and context around a project for developers. It also adds information and opens discussions that lead to fixing and solving issues. 

  1. Lack of Cooperation 

When developing new software, there are many different teams involved. Often, it can become difficult to maintain a good level of communication across the different silos. 

In recent years communication has become much easier, but it’s easy to become overloaded with options. Eventually, you’ll need to decide. So use the tools which are available such as online meeting software or GoToMeeting alternatives. 

From the very beginning, you need to ensure that you are cooperating at every point. Each silo needs to have a specific job to proceed meaningfully. 

Individual teams cannot perform all of the jobs needed to take a project through to the endpoint. The completion needs to be across the board and at similar points to ensure product testing and distribution are possible from every angle. 

Scrums are a great way of developing communication skills and sharing information across teams. Taking the time to look at the benefits of agile scrum will improve how they take place and how information is explained.

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Final Thoughts

Improving your coding skills will enhance your work as a software developer. It takes hard work and dedication to do this. 

However, whilst you are concentrating on these hard skills, you also need to be taking into account how you are going to improve your communication skills. Ultimately, as a software developer, you are going to be working with a lot of different people who discuss their projects in many different ways.

A key area of focus for you should be grasping your understanding of a project and then how you communicate through the project process. This will improve your working style and allow you to become a positive, impactful employee or a business with a great online reputation

Jenna Bunnell - Senior Manager, Content Marketing, Dialpad

Jenna Bunnell is the Senior Manager for Content Marketing at Dialpad, an AI-incorporated business phone system that provides valuable call details for business owners and sales representatives. She is driven and passionate about communicating a brand’s design sensibility and visualizing how content can be presented in creative and comprehensive ways. Jenna Bunnell also published articles for domains such as SME News and Together Platform. Check out her LinkedIn profile.