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13 Jun 2020
Jermaine Trotman

SaaS Development Lifecycle, Challenges, and Recommendations

SaaS Development Life-cycle

1. Envisioning


  • Identify existing business requirements
  • Visualize business opportunities and market trends
  • Decide whether to buy or build
  • Assess sales, marketing, and licensing models
  • Identify the SaaS solution needs

Decisions made during Envisioning

Executive sponsorship
Economic Justification
Buy vs Build
Cloud Platform Assessment
POC Plan

2. Platform Evaluation


  • Design the technical architecture
  • Define the functional and non-functional proof points
  • PaaS solution economies assessment
  • Weight the cloud platform features and capabilities with respect to the SaaS product architecture
  • Plan for POC with a small list of PaaS vendors
  • Try to acquire the trial subscription to PaaS solutions
  • Plan the product development phases (waterfall or agile)


Selecting the fit for purpose cloud PaaS

3. Planning


  • Aggregate the required product features
  • Streamline product architecture and design specifications
  • Create a project plan and schedule
  • Create a resource and communication plan
  • Create a risk management strategy


  • Project plant for the current iteration
  • Development plan
  • Current iteration feature requirements
  • Resource plan for the current iteration
  • The technical architecture for the solution
  • Design specifications
  • Operation monitoring plan

4. Subscribing


  • Negotiate SLAs (Service Level Agreements) with the managed service providers.
  • Analyse feasibility of the polished solution architecture and see if it is possible with the selected cloud service provider.
  • Validate and intersect the polished disaster recovery plan with the cloud service provider’s recovery practices.
  • Validate compliance, auditing, and data privacy.
  • Plan for residual risk mitigation.
  • Acquire a cloud subscription for product deployment.

5. Developing


  • Development environment setup
  • Deployment and testing frequently throughout the iteration
  • Application security integration
  • Cloud and on-premise systems integration
  • Streamlining the data extraction, uploading, and synchronization
  • Support and helpdesk processes integration
  • Testing support and helpdesk processes

6. Operations


  • Assess the capacity required
  • Load testing
  • Deployment plan
  • Disaster recovery and business continuity process setup and testing
  • Finalizing the support plan
  • Backup and recover process assessment
  • Service discovery collateral creation
  • Creating user and support manuals
  • Production deployment, monitoring, and performance evaluation.

SaaS Application Development Challenges

1. GDPR compliant Database access

2. SaaS subscription Lifecycle Management

3. Third-party Payment Integration

4. A Zero-Downtime Deployment

5. Future-Proof Customization

Wrapping Up

Jermaine Trotman

Jermaine Trotman is the co-founder of Nimble AppGenie, a company renowned for its bespoke mobile app development and web development in e-wallet app development and fintech development.

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