Rapid Application Development

Before we understand what rad is, let us know where and why it is used?

What is Application Development?

Application Development is a process that creates a computer program or a set of programs to perform different tasks that a business requires. It performs tasks such as calculating monthly expenses, scheduling sales reports, designing prototypes, Implementation and integration. Rapid Application Development is one of the types of Application Development.

What is Software Development?

Software Development refers to a set of scientific activities dedicated to the process of creating, deploying, designing and supporting software. It’s independent hardware that makes computers programmable. Programmers, software engineers and developers primarily conduct it. Software Development is essential as it helps businesses to differentiate themselves and be more competitive. It improves customer experiences, brings more innovative, feature-rich products to market faster, and makes operations more efficient, safe and productive.

What is RAD?

Rapid Application Development (RAD) is a software development method that prioritizes quick prototype releases and iterations. Over time, developers have realized that the Waterfall method’s critical plan pattern makes it difficult to manage client timelines and incorporate their feedback. RAD emphasizes user feedback and the use of software over precise planning and requirements recording. Also, it enhances the flexibility and agility of one’s development processes.

Waterfall model is a traditional project management approach, where all the customer requirements are collected and then a project plan is created to accommodate those requirements. While this methodology was driving software development towards a dull phase, RAD invented quickness into a developer’s life. As the title suggests, Rapid Application Development is an easy-going methodology that involves rapid prototyping and quick iterations to one’s software development processes. Hence, one can now offer immediate release and swift development, giving clients an edge over their competition.  

The steps involved in Rapid Application Development and how they help build the ultimate product

  1. The Requirement Planning Phase: Planning is crucial for every methodology that you adopt. This step helps define project development blueprint. However, this methodology is precise and concise to other proven methods. Once you have determined the requirements and goals, it is necessary to get them approved by the business stakeholders.
  2. The User Design Phase: It is a crucial phase that drives quicker iterations and ensures the competition’s edge. In this phase, the development works hand in hand with the client to design prototypes of the application. The developers will and customize the designs according to the user’s requirements.
  3. The Construction Phase: After the client approves the user design, it’s time to build and convert it into a product. The potential bugs and issues from the product are removed in the user design phase. Thus, this phase is faster and helps accelerate the launch.
  4. The Cutover Phase: Final phase of methodology is the Implementation where the deployment engineers work towards releasing a refined and perfectly tuned product.

Benefits of Rapid Application Development

  • Swift development, like contentious iteration, constant feedback, and immediate testing, develops products faster and accelerates their launch. Rapid Application Development cycle is smaller and swift compared with traditional development.
  • Its Measurable Growth, such as frequent iterations are involved in this product development. It ensures quicker releases of the components and prototypes. Hence, you can measure the project’s and realize its timeframes. 
  • It’s cost-efficient as the components and solutions used are in accord with the business requirements. Few to nil changes will be required at the end of the process. RAD makes the process efficient and effective.
  • In this Low-Risk Methodology, you can add new features or specifications to the development process. It not just adjusts automatically but also adapts to the latest specs received. 

Drawbacks of RAD

  • It is inefficient with large teams, that means it tends to lose control when dealing with too many people. It eventually makes the script for developers unpredictable that leads to significant developmental issues.
  • The frequent client and user interactions that help you stay connected can be a disadvantage if your client or user is not interested in offering their insights.
  • Its need for flexible systems is necessary because the clients’ requirements may not be modularized, which can lead to developmental delays.

Why one should use the RAD Model

This model is flexible and adaptable to changes, and it is easier to transfer deliverables as scripts. There is a cutback of manual coding due to code generators. Each phase in RAD delivers the highest priority functionality to the client, and with fewer people, productivity is increased in a short time. While none can deny the fact that RAD can help enhance software development, there are few restrictions to the model one cannot ignore. Despite the flexibility, it ensures measurable progress as well as quicker launches for your business.