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List of Best Custom Software Development Companies & Developers

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A variety of software automates the day-to-day tasks within business corporations, educational institutions, as well as public sector and private organizations. Companies can either buy pre-designed software or customized software to accommodate their requirements.

What Are the Different Types of Software Development Methodologies?

The four most prevalent software development strategies are the Waterfall development method, the Agile development method, the DevOps development method, and the Rapid application development method.

  1. Waterfall: It is a traditional software development methodology. It follows a linear model following the software development life cycle sequentially. Each stage must be accomplished before starting the next phase.
    Pros: It is convenient to understand and manage the project using linear software development methodology.
    Cons: The rigid structure makes investing in the waterfall model time-consuming and costly.
  2. Agile: This model follows iterations containing minute increments. This method helps minimize risks by quickly identifying bugs, overhead costing, and changing requirements.
    Pros: Agile allows teams to detect and fix defects and align expectations in the initial stages of development.
    Cons: It heavily relies on real-time communication between the developers and the end-users.
  3. DevOps: DevOps is a collaboration between various teams responsible for the software development life cycle, like development, quality assurance, and operations. All units operate together instead of working on individual tasks.
    Pros: Because of the frequent code releases, the DevOps method lowers the failure rates and deployment time while maintaining the app's reliability.
    Cons: Miscommunication or using different environments between departments can result in a massive fallout.
  4. RAD: To design a high-quality system at a lower investment cost, RAD implements a compressed development process. This method consists of four phases: requirements planning, user design, construction, and cutover, instead of the traditional seven stages.
    Pros: It delivers speedy solutions for medium-sized projects with well-defined business objectives.
    Cons: This method requires highly skilled programmers with in-depth application knowledge.

What Are the 7 Phases of the Software Development Life Cycle?

The software development life cycle denotes the stages of software development from ideation to delivery to the client. There are seven stages of SDLC. The software development process occurs constantly until the ideal software is created.

  1. Planning: The planning phase comprises the perspectives of project and product management. The software developers map out resource allocation, procurement requirements, project scheduling, cost and time estimation, and other crucial particulars.
  2. Requirements: Once a rough plan is formulated, the different IT teams assemble and weigh the project's functional requirements. These requirements are gathered from business stakeholders and Subject Matter Experts (SMEs.)
  3. Design and Prototyping: Software architects and developers begin designing the software in this stage. The architects define the frameworks and structures of the application, while the developers focus on the software development languages and technologies to implement. Architects and developers use numerous software development tools to eliminate algorithmic problems. This phase also includes rapid prototyping (spikes) to analyze solutions and execute the best option.
  4. Development: The core development of the software springs in this phase. In this stage, the team of software developers produces a working model of the application. Moreover, a constant communication channel is established with the clients to ensure that the software meets their expectations, thereby avoiding extensive changes.
  5. Testing: It is one of the most vital phases of the software development process. The developers perform a variety of testing, such as unit testing, code testing, integration testing, security testing, performance testing, etc., to ensure the quality of the product. After the completion of the testing phase, the functional software is ready for deployment.
  6. Deployment: In most software development companies, the deployment phase is automated. Medium to large-size enterprises use Application Release Automation (ARA) tools to automate software implementation in production environments. This phase yields the release of the working software.
  7. Operation and Maintenance: It is imperative to ensure the proper functioning of the software after its release. By continually monitoring the software in the production environment, software developers can detect and eliminate any bugs or defects that may arise. This stage also caters to any additional needs of the end-user, such as fine-tuning the system, boosting performance, adding new features, etc.

Which Are the Popular Software Development Languages?

  1. Java: Being the oldest, Java is an exemplary server-side application development language. It first offered the revolutionary concept of WORA, "write once, run anywhere." The software developers access the numerous tools and technology the Java library provides to build robust, complex, and scalable server-side software. Its popularity is also due to its high cross-platform compatibility.
  2. PHP: PHP is an object-oriented programming language. There is an extensive range of open-source PHP frameworks. These frameworks enable the addition of sophisticated features and functionalities into the app without writing prolonged codes. Multiple PHP development tools enhance efficiency during coding. It also speeds up customized app development while simplifying maintenance.
  3. Python: It has advanced as one of the major web programming languages in this era. Many academic institutes have incorporated Python as a premier software development language for creating Artificial Intelligence and machine learning-based applications. Python can function as an object-oriented scripting language for a large project.
  4. C#: C# follows the concept of C. Hence, developers with an understanding of C Programming can effortlessly grasp the concepts of C# as well. It is easily integrable with Windows, making it a prime language for web application and cross-application development. Unlike its namesake, C/C++, C# does not permit pointer types, making it safer.
  5. JavaScript: For over five years, most software developers, to some extent, have used JavaScript to code the application. JavaScript is a powerful scripting language that allows software developers to decide on the suitable feature to incorporate within the software. It helps create interactive software applications by developing apt UI for the client and server sides. The most significant advantage of using this language is that it is compatible with all browsers.

What Are the Factors Affecting Software Development Cost?

The aggregate cost of software development depends on numerous factors. A minute change in one of these factors can significantly change the final software development cost.

  • Platform: The software development cost depends on the platform type and Operating System. The software development cost differs substantially based on this criterion. Most software developed for one platform does not run on the other. This is due to the vast different programming languages, software development kits, and software development tools used. Designing cross-platform software will cost more in comparison to dedicated software.
  • Design: The successful operation of software depends on its ability to deliver an exceptional user experience (UX) and a smooth user interface (UI). Supplying this can take much time and effort on the development end, depending on the software type and complexity. The software development cost of more elaborate and sophisticated UX/UI applications will be higher.
  • Time: While creating special software, the developers must invest more time in ensuring the application functions properly. Hence, the number of hours spent on designing and developing software can cause fluctuation in the cost of software development. Moreover, if a company requires the delivery of elaborate software before the prescribed time frame, the software development company will need to assign additional specialist developers to complete the task. Thus, causing a surge in the final billed amount. 
  • Testing: Testing is an integral part of software development. The cost of testing software can vary due to the application's complexity and the number of reboots required. Most software development companies include testing services in the package; however, opting for a combined payment option is better to avoid paying for unnecessary and extensive reboots.
  • Hiring Option: The development cost also depends on the experience, type, and location of the custom software development company chosen. For instance, it is cost-effective to outsource software development solutions or opt for freelance software developers for hire instead of building an in-house team of developers. Moreover, while outsourcing, a company based in a developed country will charge more than a software development company in a developing country.

How Much Does Software Development Cost?

GoodFirms’ research depicting the valuable stats and trends on software development exhibited an estimated cost for software development projects based on their functionality.

  • To design basic-functionality software, experienced software developers charge less than $20,000.
  • Software having general utility costs somewhere between $20,000 to $40,000.
  • Software with above-average complexity features can be delivered at a price range of $40,000 - $60,000.
  • Custom software development companies working on complex and feature-rich applications can quote a price of over $60,000.

How Much Time Does It Take to Build a Software?

The time taken to build software mainly depends on its complexity. 

  • Basic Software: They can be built in less than 2 months, but their functionality is considerably simple.
  • Medium Complexity Software: This software has more complicated features and can be deployed within 2 - 6 months.
  • High Complexity Software: Creating software of this level can take more than 6 months due to incorporating intricate architecture, security solutions, multiple integrations, and many more.

How to Find the Right Software Developers?

It is vital to thoroughly analyze the top software development companies to find the ideal partner. However, weighing their capabilities without knowing which selection criteria to analyze can be challenging. While shortlisting a software development company, consider the following benchmarks:

  1. Expertise: Most companies have a clear idea of the type of platform and technology stack they plan on incorporating into their software before the start of the project. Therefore, they must hire software developers with a specific skill set and specialize in using those software development tools and technologies. For example, to create software in Java programming, consider selecting a software development company with expert Java developers with extensive knowledge of the top Java Frameworks such as Apache Nutch, Drools, AppFuse, etc.
  2. Experience: Decision-makers must opt for a custom software development company that possesses hands-on experience in projects related to their industry. For instance, if a firm plans to develop an eCommerce application, choose software developers with previous experience designing such software. This way, businesses can ensure the software quality satisfies their requirements. Moreover, while outsourcing, clients must focus on service providers with previous experience working with remote teams. This offers insight into their ability to handle off-shore projects.
  3. Reviews: Apart from their experience, clients must examine past clients' feedback to the software development company. This thoroughly explains the software development firm’s processes and service quality. Apart from requesting references from existing and previous clients, business owners can also explore third-party review and rating platforms, such as GoodFirms, to receive genuine customer feedback. 
  4. Agility: The project requirement is bound to evolve during software development. Ensuring that the software developer for hire is flexible enough to adapt to the change is vital. This can be determined by studying their approach toward adopting new technology and their ability to scale the project and offer flexible pricing models. The software developer must be ready to embrace innovations as required to satisfy the demands and expectations of their clients.
  5. Easy Exit Process: After the completion of the project, the top software development companies ensure a smooth and hassle-free transfer of the software and related information. However, it is wise to partner with a firm that offers seamless transition by timely transferring documentation and best practices to avoid miscommunication. Moreover, select a software development company willing to sign a Non-Disclosure Agreement to safeguard confidential data.

What Questions to Ask the Software Development Company Before Signing the Contract?

Before settling on a software development company, there are several topics that you need to cover, like their pricing model, the number of developers assigned to the project, the estimated project duration, the requisite contracts, and documentation, along with the software development tools, languages, frameworks employed. However, this should not be the deciding factor for hiring a software developer. You must ask the following question to get a definite idea before finalizing the deal:

  1. How Do You Ensure That You Comprehend My Project's Requirements?

    This is the founding question to either select or reject a company. A gap in explaining or understanding the project requirements can leave you with an application that varies significantly from what you envisioned. The top software developers for hire will warrant a comprehensive understanding of your business concerns, timeline, resources, budget, and market goals.

    Give bonus points to the company that intends to provide prototypes, proof of concepts, and minimum viable products (MVPs) to communicate their insight and allow you to expand and improve that perception.
  2. What Is Your Software Development Approach?

    It is always wise to inquire about the software development process adopted by the contending software development company. The best custom software development companies will employ a reliable method that offers consistency and quality control. Ask them to describe their Agile processes, UX/UI research, iterations, QA/testing, etc. 

    Do not forget to inquire about the steps they have taken to dodge the "Black Swan" situation in previous projects and how they plan to implement those tactics in your project. Hiring a software developer who can ensure that the software has no grey areas after deployment is vital. 
  3. Is Software Maintenance and Staff Training Included in the Package?

    After the deployment of the software, businesses may require the addition of newer features and functionalities as well as to fix bugs and release updates. The top software development companies offer post-deployment support. Most software developers for hire also provide software training to your in-house team.

    Ask your potential software development company regarding the structure of maintenance and training administered by them. It is imperative to discuss whether these services are included in the pre-discussed budget or offered as an add-on service.
  4. What Kind of Involvement Do You Expect from Me?

    For developing software that meets your expectations, it is vital that you explicitly mention all your requirements to the software development company. Depending on the software development methodology, the developers may need to maintain a steady communication channel with you.

    Inquiring about your expected involvement with the developers will let you offer timely suggestions regarding any changes you desire. Moreover, both parties can achieve individual responsibilities, ensuring a harmonious software development process.
  5. Why Should I Collaborate with Your Company?

    This may seem like a very generic question. However, if the answer offered by the prospective software developer is standard, it may be due to their lack of understanding of your project. They must be apt to describe their qualities and potential contribution that resonate with your project. 

At the same time, it is essential not to fall for extravagant claims made by service providers! Demand for samples or illustrations of measurable services and solutions the team offers. Hire a software developer with a credible and industry-specific track record that exhibits excellence and relevance to your project.

GoodFirms Research Process

The principal aim of GoodFirms is to assist service seekers in finding the ideal software development solution by highlighting the rundown of the top custom software development agencies worldwide.

The researchers at GoodFirms have precisely evaluated significant software development companies based on GoodFirms proprietary research methodology. Our research approach covers critical qualitative and quantitative factors. The predominant firms that bagged a position on the list of top software development companies have been classified based on their software development and software designing caliber. Additionally, GoodFirms considers the contending companies' years of experience and market influence to comprehend their benefactions to the industry. The other valuable parameter the research team acknowledges is the feedback and recommendations from previous clients, vouching for their credibility.

After thoroughly analyzing, we have curated the list of the most reliable software development firms capable of delivering robust, appealing, and error-free software solutions to patrons worldwide. The featured companies maintain a team of experienced and qualified software developers that use leading-edge tools and technologies to create the ideal product.

GoodFirms urges new and established software development companies to present proof of their achievement and grab a spot in our 'Leader Matrix' section.