6 Software Development Life Cycle (SDLC) Methodologies

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Top 6 leading Software Development Life Cycle (SDLC) methodologies include: Agile software development, Lean, Waterfall, Iterative, Spiral, and Devops.

6 Software Development Life Cycle (SDLC) Methodologies

Table of Contents

The Software Development Life Cycle (SDLC) is the proofreading of the software development industry. This could detect mistakes in software development before they’re found (often at a higher expense) in later stages. But, in fact, SDLC can do far more than just that: it can also set out a strategy for getting things right in the first place.

The idea of a software development life cycle isn’t recent. To make our world simpler, we all utilize various software development methods. Let's discover the 6 leading SDLC methodologies via this article!

What are Software Development Life Cycle Methodologies?

The SDLC methodologies are various approaches or frameworks that provide guidance on how to structure and organize the software development process. These models outline different phases and activities, as well as the order in which they should be executed.

6 Software Development Life Cycle Methodologies


Some experts believe that the Waterfall approach was never intended to be used as a project management paradigm. In any case, the Waterfall system is typically regarded as the most ancient of the formal SDLC methods.

It’s also a pretty simple strategy: complete one step before moving onto another. There’s no turning back now. Each step builds on the preceding stage’s knowledge which has its development plan.

Waterfall’s drawback is its stiffness. It is, without a doubt, straightforward to comprehend and handle. However, early delays may put the whole project off schedule. Issues can’t be addressed until the maintenance phase since there’s limited opportunity for changes after a stage is finished. When flexibility is required if the task is long-term and continuous, this approach does not function effectively.

The associated Verification and Validation concept, often known as the V-shaped framework, is much more strict. The Waterfall technique inspired this linear sequential style. It is distinguished by every development step having its testing stage. Each level, like Waterfall, starts only after the preceding one has finished. If the project has no unclear needs, this SDLC approach may be helpful.

The Waterfall model is a linear and sequential approach where each phase flows downward like a waterfall.
The Waterfall model is a linear and sequential approach where each phase flows downward like a waterfall. (Source: Internet)


The Agile software development has been in use for over a decade. However, in many companies, it has recently become a significant driving factor behind software development. In addition, some companies have found that the Agile approach is so valuable that they’re already using it for non-tech projects as well.

Fast failure is a positive feature under the Agile methodology. The method results in continuous release cycles with tiny, incremental modifications from the initial release. The product has been tested after each generation. The Agile approach assists teams in identifying and resolving minor issues on projects before they become major ones, as well as engaging business stakeholders and receiving feedback throughout the design phase.

Several teams are using an Agile framework called Scrum to organize more complicated development projects as the core of their adoption of this approach. Daily Scrum communication allows the whole team to keep track of the progress of the project. ScrumMaster’s job is to keep the group oriented on their objective.

The Agile software development has been in use for over a decade.
The Agile software development has been in use for over a decade. (Source: Internet)


The Lean software development approach is based on lean manufacturing concepts and techniques. Cut waste, magnify knowledge, commit as late as possible, serve as quickly as feasible, empower the group, incorporate morality in, and understand the big picture are the seven Lean concepts.

There is no space for multitasking in the Lean process since it is all about focusing on what has to be done at the moment. Working groups are also looking for ways to save money at every stage of the development cycle, from eliminating superfluous meetings to decreasing paperwork.

An Agile system is usually a Lean approach to the SDLC, with a few significant exceptions. One difference is how each emphasizes customer happiness. Agile puts client satisfaction first from the start, allowing project teams to react rapidly to stakeholder input all through the SDLC. On the other hand, Lean stresses waste reduction as a means of increasing total value for consumers, which helps to improve contentment.


Iterative software development embodies repetition. Rather than beginning with completely defined requirements, project managers execute various software demands before testing, evaluating, and identifying further needs. With each step or iteration, a new edition of the program is created. Repeat the process until the entire system is up and running.

The Iterative model has benefits over other prevalent SDLC methodologies. It generates an operating report of the application early on and makes change implementation less costly. One disadvantage is that repetitive procedures can rapidly deplete resources.

The development stage is split into four phases by RUP:

  • Inception: whenever a project’s concept is established; 
  • Elucidation: when the task is further described, and funds are assessed; 
  • Building: when the proposal is produced and finished; 
  • Shift: when the product is released. 

Thus, business conceptualization, assessment, design, development, verification, and implementation are all parts of the operation.


The Spiral model, among the most flexible SDLC methods, is based on the Iterative model as well as its repeatability; the project goes through four stages (plan, risk assessment, engineering, and assessment) in a “spiral” until finished, providing for many rounds of modification.

For big projects, this Spiral model is often utilized. It allows development teams to create highly personalized products and integrate customer input early in the development process. Managing risk is yet another advantage of this SDLC approach. Each round begins by anticipating possible risks and determining the best way to prevent or minimize them.


The V-Model is an extension of the waterfall model that emphasizes the relationship between each phase and its corresponding testing phase. It follows a sequential order like Waterfall but places a strong emphasis on testing activities.

For each phase of the development process (e.g., requirements, design, coding), there is a corresponding testing phase (e.g., requirements testing, system testing, acceptance testing) that validates the work done in that phase. The V-Model ensures that testing is integrated into each stage of the development process.

Incremental Model

The Incremental model involves dividing the software development process into smaller, manageable increments or modules. Each module goes through the phases of the Waterfall model, starting from requirements gathering to deployment and maintenance.

The difference is that each module is developed and delivered incrementally, allowing for early feedback and end-user validation. This model is suitable for large projects where early delivery of partial functionality is desired.


DevOps is a relatively recent addition to the SDLC landscape. It arose from two areas: the introduction of Agile and Lean techniques to operations work; and a broader movement in management toward appreciating the importance of cooperation among development and operation personnel at all levels of the SDLC process.

Developers and Operations groups cooperate closely — and often as one — under a DevOps paradigm. The aim is to speed up creativity and the delivery of higher-quality, more dependable software products and services. Product updates are modest yet regular. The DevOps approach emphasizes consistency, constant feedback and continuous improvement, and the automating of manual development processes.

DevOps is a set of cultural beliefs, processes, and technologies that improves an organization’s capacity to provide high-velocity apps and services, allowing it to evolve and improve products at a quicker rate than conventional software development and building management procedures.

As with many SDLC models, DevOps is not just a method for designing and organizing tasks but also a philosophy that necessitates substantial organizational mentality and cultural changes.

DevOps combines development (Dev) and operations (Ops) to streamline the software development and deployment process.
DevOps combines development (Dev) and operations (Ops) to streamline the software development and deployment process. (Source: Internet)

>> Read more: Integrating Security into DevOps for Enhanced Software Development

Last Thoughts

Selecting the appropriate SDLC model for the software project will need considerable consideration. Please remember, however, that a technique for planning and directing the project is just one component of success. Even more crucial is putting together a strong team of talented individuals who are dedicated to pushing the project ahead despite any challenges or setbacks.

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