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Professional vs. Non-professional Programming Firms

For any business client, there is a huge potential difference in the quality of the services rendered when comparing professional and non-professional firms in the software programming market. At EcomSolutions, Inc., it is our sincere belief that 99% of the firms fall into the latter category.

To differentiate between professional and non-professional firms, the former (representing only 1% of the industry) are larger in size and scope, and can afford to properly design the project architecture. They also carry enough insurance to ensure that the project is successfully carried through to completion.

Non-professional firms, on the other hand, generally degrade the quality of the programming industry and also lower the cost-basis for programming projects. It is these companies that are the most competitive in the market, with many fighting for the same jobs. Although the services they offer may seem to present a good value, the client will ultimately pay a higher price because of a finished product that is decidedly inferior to that generated by professionals.

Firms that are not professional often do not pay attention to detail; do not take the time to get a clear understanding about the client, or their needs; and do not analyze the entire project correctly. Nor do they set up an effective strategy for each individual project.

The project development time for a professional firm is generally longer than the typical non-professional job, due to the fact that they take more time and care during the analyzation and design process. Software ‘bugs,’ which need to be fixed for the software to be properly deployed, are a huge problem. In short, non-professionals do the work quickly, but not correctly.

A few of the many programming areas where non-professional firms are lacking are: adequate technical writing support, project management, design and QA. In addition, non-professionals often operate with a minimum of 2 –3 programmers, and fail to construct a sufficient number of builds for testing purposes.

So, the question is: what is the proper way to go about designing software? What steps do professional firms unfailingly take, but which are often overlooked by non-professionals?
Some of the basic steps are:

Domain Analysis – This is often the first step in software design, whether for an addition to existing software, an entirely new application, or a new system or subsystem.

Software Elements Analysis – Before constructing software, it is necessary to extract the customer’s listed requirements. Incorrect requirements are easily be recognized by experienced programmers, and the situation rectified at this time.

Specification – This is the development step in which the software is precisely described and the framework specifications detailed

Software architecture – Before actual development can take place, the architecture, or an abstract representation of that system, is finalized – in rigorous detail.

Implementation – The actual ‘nuts and bolts’ of designing software, it is also known as coding. Although the most well known step in software development, it actually only takes up approximately 30% of total project time.

Testing – Some would say that the most important aspect of development is the extensive amount of testing that professional firms undertake, in order to ensure that there are no hidden ‘bugs’ or other such issues which might tend to prevent the smooth implementation of the software for the client.

Documentation – An often-overlooked part of software development is the process of detailing all of the steps taken to create the new system, mainly for the purpose of future maintenance and enhancement.

While professional firms never fail to implement all of the steps listed above in their development process, non-professionals frequently neglect to. Anyone who contracts with EcomSolutions, Inc. can be assured that, as a professional firm, the very highest level of development practices will be employed for their project.


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