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Implementation of software solutions can be made available through four Engagement Models – Fixed Duration, Time & Materials (Hourly Work and Billing), Full Time Equivalents (Offshore) and Full Time Equivalents (Onsite - at the client's end). Choosing the right mode of engagement is perhaps the most critical of all business decisions and can result in the right mix of expenses and yields.
We at AEPL Creation have structued our engagement models and resource allocations based on understanding the requirement from our clinets time to time to reduce the cost and at the same time delivering the maximum flexibility from our end to ensure desired outcomes/results for our clients.
AEPL Creation works on the model of Offshore software services. We have expert engineers focusing on each Technology Areas that ensure timely product deliverance. Focus within Technology Areas encourages them to build competency in each distinct development architecture. This also helps our teams in addressing the delivery nuances related to a particular type of technology.
At AEPL Creation the project development methodology and approach followed depends on various factors. We follow traditional waterfall model, prototyping model or iterative RUP methodologies, depending on the project type. We have a set of well-defined software engineering processes for software development life cycle. Each of these processes, ranging from requirements to release, is based on industry-standard software development practices. Our processes have evolved over a period of time, to incorporate best practices in requirements management, project management and oversight, design methods and testing methodologies and tools. We are equipped with a comprehensive Quality Management System comprising of Organizational Standard Software Development Processes, Departmental processes like HR and Information Systems, Artifacts for each process (process assets) and its related reference documents like Organizational coding guidelines, Review Guidelines etc.
Requirements are gathered using industry-standard practices and reviewed both internally by peers and externally by clients, and findings of reviews are tracked to closure. Once these requirements are frozen, the development work begins. All the requirements are numbered at the onset so that they are tagged for identification and accurately documented in the design document. Each requirement is assigned a Requirements ID, which is further used to track the requirement from definition, design, implementation and testing phases. This also helps to easily track and verify that all the requirements are catered.
A project kick-off meeting marks the beginning of the project. A comprehensive Project plan is prepared, which outlines all the critical aspects related to the smooth project execution. These include:
Process tailoring also forms an important part of this phase. One process does not fit all, hence adjustments may be required. PM and SQA refer to organizational process tailoring guidelines and tailor the process. SQA ensures that processes are tailored appropriately to meet the needs of the project based on the type and size. Tailored process is documented in the Project Plan.
Detail Design defines and maps the entire system in details, as well as the functional process flow.
The content of the design document contains the following main items:
For overall functionality, we use Microsoft Visio for architecture and database design. Before the design is finally approved, it is exhaustively reviewed by Technical Leads and System Architects. Design specific errors are identified and resolved. The detailed design can also be given to the customer for review, if required.
Here, actual coding activities are done according to the organizational coding guidelines for different technologies. Internal and inline commenting is done along with the coding activity. Completion of each module results in preparation of test cases and unit level testing. Code reviews are also done to ensure that the developed code adheres to the organizational guidelines for coding. Code Reviews are done upon completion of each software unit. This ensures that coding is done according to laid out guidelines and that code is readable, clean and maintainable.
There are various levels of testing that have been defined and followed at Agile Technosys:
Test Planning is done at the onset of the project in the project planning phase. The Test plan outlines the types of test to be performed, resources, tools and responsibilities for test related activities.
For unit testing, the developers are made responsible for the quality of the module they are developing. At different levels and for different kind of projects, we use unit-testing tools like NUnit for .NET framework and JUnit for Java based applications.
For functional testing, test cases are generated and filled with data and supplied to the QA team.
During the integrated testing the entire application is deployed on the testing infrastructure and then various aspects of the application such as the platform support, browser support etc. are considered. Here some automated tools and stress testing tools are also used.
The final User Acceptance Testing (UAT) is also a very important procedure, which is done in phases by the client, before accepting the complete delivery of the application. Processes for projects are continuously verified and monitored by the SQA and senior team members of the project to ensure that the defined processes are followed to streamline the development and enhance the effectiveness.
Prior to commencement of the project, we follow an approach wherein all known risks specific to the project are identified and documented. The Risk Management Section of the Project Plan is generated, where all possible foreseen risks and their contingencies are documented and addressed.
Each risk is given a Risk ID, and has a risk category, occurrence probability, consequences and mitigation strategy. Risks are assessed throughout the execution to identify any new risks that may occur. This assists us to visualize the possible problem areas and address them right at the onset.
For risks associated with delay in client feedback, we propose to have a dedicated Engagement Manager (can be anyone from client side) at the clients end to ensure faster approval, review and feedback process.