Rapid application development (RAD) has been around in some form for decades, but it’s undergoing a renaissance right now. Under the current paradigm, it helps companies bring value to market faster. Unlike the waterfall method that we saw a lot in software development over the past 15 years, what you see with RAD is a quicker process focused on software usage and immediate feedback.
Let’s not get technical here, though. Instead: what are the business opportunities and wins when you embrace RAD?
The business advantages of RAD
Here are the core ones:
- Shortened time to market, which allows you to get ahead of competitors.
- A build process that reduces later change requests, which allows you to focus on core business priorities instead of scrambling to adjust projects.
- Higher-quality software because the process is rooted in testing and feedback; this means better customer experience, which means more retention. Because of the continuous user engagement, and prototypes that can be adjusted until they meet all the requirements perfectly, most of the issues and bugs are eliminated in early phases, which results in a high-quality application.
- Code once, use many times. You get boilerplate models which allow for greater speed of process.
- More on-time delivery -- and, in fact, development times are often shortened. This means that devs can finish a project, debrief, relax a bit, and move to a new project, as opposed to constantly being on-edge about late change requests. Less dev burnout = more efficiency in a wide range of projects.
- Reduced cost: The goal is to build systems exactly as the client briefed. In waterfall approach, the development team risks building systems with complex features that the client might choose to remove from the final product. This means two things: the time spent on developing such features can never be brought back, and the budget spent cannot be recovered.
- Risk reduction because of proven tech and no vendor lock-in.
- Increased developer motivation, as they get to present their work frequently and the final product is what was originally expected, without a lot of distractions and diversions. Developers enjoy working in this context more.
The goal here was to educate you about some of the benefits of rapid application development. You get reduced cost but higher quality, which is always a development hallmark.
If you’d like to know more about how we work on rapid application development projects, we have a product sheet detailing our work in the space that you can download below.