68% of companies are more likely to have a marginal project or outright failure than a success (“Study: 68 percent of IT projects fail”).
Budgets are blown up, timelines get dragged out, and the project doesn’t seem to come out like it was originally planned. So why? Over the last 20 years, SEQTEK has been brought into various situations in different industries and here are some of the common issues we’ve seen in software projects.
1. Poor Requirements Gathering
This can be attributed to a number of things. Many leaders assume that developers have the information needed for what the business is looking for. The developers may have an idea of what the business is looking for but they aren’t mind readers. The lack of user input creates miscommunication of the true expectations set ahead. Pair this with poor project management and you can see how this will cause a failed project before it’s even delivered.
2. Constant Distractions
Most development teams are forced to put out fires from previously flawed projects that they might not have been a part of. This takes their focus off the new project and constantly pulls them back to the older projects. This causes the backlog to build up and it’s a constant back and forth that puts a lot of stress on developers, especially when they can’t dedicate their time to completing the current project’s objectives.
3. Employee Turnover
It’s no secret developers are in high demand and with the average turnover for a software developer around 2 years, projects get shelved if/when certain team members leave the organization. A common reason developers leave is because they become stressed out, overwhelmed and unmotivated. Companies have been left in the dark when a developer leaves the company which often creates a huge knowledge gap and makes it even harder for the next developer to step in and take over.
The truth is that successfully completing software projects is difficult. You can’t make it easy, however, you can adopt certain processes that are proven to work which allows your team to remove roadblocks quickly and minimize risks. We have worked with leaders in just about every industry and no matter what the industry, these common challenges in software development can create infighting, cause unnecessary stress, waste time, and cause excess spending. To help combat these challenges, make sure your business is properly gathering requirements, have a product owner or project manager that’s responsible for managing those requirements, and give developers the tools and resources they need to be successful.
– Brent Fields (Managing Partner, SEQTEK)