Why Do You Need Software Maintenance and How It Happens

Jan 05, 2023

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Insufficient attention to software maintenance is one of the biggest mistakes inexperienced engineering teams make. Startups calculate their budget as a one-time expense. They neglect that any app requires continuous support to operate correctly and stay afloat. As a result, unexpected changes lead to cost overruns and frustration.

The software development process is a never-ending story. Mind that you will spend a large part of your budget on updates, fixes, analytics, modifications, and enhancements. The maintenance expenses may reach 60% of the cost.

If you question the importance of software maintenance and want to learn more about it, keep reading. This article is a quick guide with answers to all common questions.

What is Software Maintenance

Software maintenance is a process that happens after product launch to upgrade and modify the app or fix bugs. It’s necessary to improve the overall quality of software, optimize performance, and implement new features requested by users.

Maintenance is the final but no less critical stage of the software development cycle, which newbies often neglect. Yet, in reality, you won’t be able to avoid it. The software cannot operate appropriately without continuous updates.

4 Software Maintenance Types

There are several types of software maintenance services. They are usually combined within one project, but you can focus on one type depending on your project’s needs.

Adaptive

Adaptive software maintenance is about implementing system modifications to keep the software compatible with changing business and technical requirements. You use it when:

  • End users expect the product to support more advanced hardware and software
  • The operating system your platform runs on is changing
  • You follow market trends and want to enhance your software for the future

Corrective

Corrective maintenance includes auditing an existing system and implementing fixes to make it more stable. The product team regularly does minor updates to ensure the software performs without disruptions. Use this maintenance approach if:

  • Software no longer works properly after the launch
  • You detect faulty logic, invalid tests, or other issues before publishing an app and need to troubleshoot

Perfective

Perfective maintenance is about changing system elements and features to improve its performance. It happens when a software provider discovers ways to increase the product’s value and provide users with a better experience. This software maintenance type is preferable when:

  • You want a product to work faster
  • You aim to enhance UI and usability
  • You need to implement new features or remove unnecessary ones

Preventive

Preventive maintenance allows product teams to prevent system crashes and vulnerabilities. These are the adjustments you introduce to avoid security and performance issues in the future. Follow this maintenance approach to:

  • Complete code optimization for better software performance
  • Reduce risks related to using software for a long time

Reasons to Do Software Maintenance

High software quality is a common objective of all maintenance approaches. Without regular improvements, any solution becomes updated pretty quickly. To be more precise, you need continuous software support to:

Upgrade Legacy Software

Maintenance is required to optimize performance or migrate an existing solution to newer technology. This way, you ensure the developed software provides the best experience to end users.

Leobit can help you with requirements discovery and tech support across all software development stages, including maintenance.

Remove Bugs

Bug fixing happens when you are finalizing a product and after deployment. It’s the maintenance process to detect and eliminate vulnerabilities before they affect users, security, or performance.

Improve Design and Usability

Since UX/UI trends and user preferences change, design modifications are another essential aspect of software maintenance. You will have to track user behavior metrics and enhance your product to grow conversions.

Implement Additional Features

After the software launch, you may still need to add new features or integrate third-party solutions to expand the functionality. Such upgrades are essential to keep users and stay competitive.

How it Happens: Software Maintenance Processes

The software maintenance process has a similar flow across tech companies. Here are the main stages your team will go through:

1. Identification

Engineers, QA specialists, designers, users, or anyone else interacting with the software detects a problem/area for improvement and files a report.

2. Analysis and planning

The team analyzes the issue to decide whether it’s a feasible change. They also prioritize the change, specifying its urgency and the impact on the overall performance.

3. Implementation

Engineers introduce the required changes, be it a new feature, bug removal, or third-party integration.

4. Testing

Once the updates are ready, QAs start system testing to ensure everything runs smoothly. Afterward, you will also need to do acceptance testing in the form of field testing, beta testing, or end-user testing, depending on your project specifications.

5. Delivery

The updated software is delivered to all end-users (not only testers) and becomes the latest product version.

Tips for Successful Software Maintenance

Leobit offers maintenance as a part of an end-to-end software development cycle or a separate service. Below are some recommendations based on our experience gained over the years.

You should:

  • Regularly collect feedback from your help desk
  • Specify the people responsible for software maintenance and redistribute responsibilities
  • Keep documentation related to code operation
  • Thoroughly test applications upfront to have more time for troubleshooting
  • Consider moving to the cloud for easier maintenance
  • Introduce a standardized procedure for new product releases
  • Automate all maintenance processes you can
  • For personalized advice or assistance with software support, contact Leobit. We will analyze your project and offer the most suitable format for maintenance.

Software Maintenance Cost

Maintenance cost is a significant expense you must consider before starting development. Estimating the budget, mind regular charges on:

  • Code refactoring
  • Hosting services, licenses, and premium SaaS accounts
  • iOS and Android fees (for mobile app development)
  • The cost of fixing a bug
  • Design updates
  • Third-party integrations and plug updates

The rough estimate of software maintenance cost is 5.600$ monthly. But, of course, the pricing varies depending on the system’s complexity and connected third-party services.

Final Thoughts

Maintenance is a critical stage of every software development cycle. So you cannot avoid it if you expect your product to last, grow, and prosper. The main thing is to plan everything to understand which maintenance type you need and estimate the budget.

Leobit can help you with requirements discovery and tech support across all software development stages, including maintenance. Contact us to discuss your project needs now.

Tetiana Paratsii
Tetiana Paratsii
Marketing Analyst at Leobit
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