Software Engineering vs. Software Development
2022-01-18 /

Software Engineering vs. Software Development

Developing software is a team effort. Within this ecosystem, software engineering vs. software development teams plays different roles. But they work together for a unified goal. And that is to develop, deploy, and maintain an error-free product.  

There are three common types of software in the market today. The first one is custom software, which caters to meet the specific needs of a client. Moreover, the second is the so-called commercial software, which meets the potential needs of a set of end-users. And, the last type is for personal use. 

A newly emerging type of software is embedded software. It handles various commands to control devices and machines that are not considered computers. These things include industrial robots, cars, AI devices, and other machines that are part of the Internet of Things.

But these four products make use of software engineering and software development processes. So here is a discussion on the differences between software engineering vs. software development. And how these teams also come together. 

A Study in Contrast: Software Engineering vs. Software Development

Software engineering and software development are two related terms. However, these fields also have differences based on how they develop concepts and processes. Let’s look into the nature of each field and find out how they work together to create software.

Software Engineering at a Glance

Software engineering starts with analyzing and understanding user and system requirements. That is to say, teams use the principles of engineering to develop software. It is a systematic approach to the design, development, maintenance, and testing of the product. 

Moreover, the field also includes the processing and maintenance of associated software documentation. But how did software engineering start?

In the late 1960s, software development faced a lot of challenges. However, many projects went over the allocated budget but the product was unreliable. Some products were difficult and expensive to maintain due to their complexity or hardware requirements. And, many software did not meet the requirements of end-users. 

As the demand for new products increased, the industry knew that it had to resolve the Software Crisis. Thus, in the late 1970s, many companies started using software engineering principles. 

The engineering models helped organize the software development life cycle. And, the strategies pushed the creation of products to meet customer requirements.

Introduction to Software Development

Software development deals with the process of designing, programming, testing, documenting and supporting deployed products. The process also handles identifying and fixing bugs to maintain applications, frameworks, and other software elements.

When developing software, it involves structured processes within a development life cycle. Typically, software development starts by identifying user requirements and determining product viability.

After that, the team chooses a methodology and a framework. Additionally, there are many kinds of methodologies that teams can use, such as Waterfall, Agile, and DevOps, among others. 

Once the methodologies and theoretical design are finalized, the software development process proceeds with coding. After that, software testing and fixing start if bugs and other errors are found. The last stage is called deployment where an error-free product is released to the market.

Software development began on June 21, 1948. A computer scientist named Tom Kilburn wrote the world’s first software. It was run at the University of Manchester in England. The software was used to perform mathematical calculations; it took 52 minutes to compute the greatest divisor of two (2) to the power of 18.

Different Roles for Different Fields

The day of a software developer may be completely different from that of a software engineer. But there may be tasks that overlap between these professionals. Let’s find out more about each job’s role within a team. 

Working as a Software Engineer

Are you wondering what a day in the office looks like for a software engineer? Well, it varies from one company to another. Thus, here are some common duties of a software engineer along with the skill set necessary for the position.

Software Engineer: General Job Description

  • Design, develop, and implement an information system for the whole software development life cycle
  • Determine operational and system feasibility through analysis of user and system requirements
  • Create software solutions by developing system specifications and programming standards through analyzing work processes, data usage, and other requirements  
  • Implement and produce software documentation with code comments and clear code
  • Enhance the whole software development life cycle by carrying out system upgrades and recommending policy and procedure changes
  • Study the incompatibility of software products on various platforms and look for solutions

Qualifications of a Software Engineer

  • Educational background related to computer science, computer engineering, and other related disciplines
  • Relevant professional experience in software development and software engineering 
  • Excellent knowledge of any programming languages required by the company
  • Strong DevOps experience especially in test-driven development and automated testing frameworks
  • Proficient in advanced mathematics with a focus on software engineering principles
  • Excellent communication skills
  • High analytical and problem-solving skills
  • Organized and has high attention to detail
  • Excellent ability to adapt to new technologies
  • Team player
  • Great time management skills

Best Practices for a Software Engineer

  • Ensure that systems and solutions can sustain a product that meets the highest quality standards
  • Promote team collaboration within the teams to facilitate a smooth working relationship
  • Maintain ethical practices for software development, testing, deployment, and maintenance
  • Use version control to track all changes and synchronize them into one master file
  • Remember that good testing practices will help you avoid troubles along the way
  • Think about the Don’t Repeat Yourself Principle to reduce redundancies and repetition in your information system

Work of a Software Developer In A Nutshell

In relation to the job description of a software engineer, here are some general duties of a developer. Find the common qualifications of the position below.

Software Developer: General Job Description

  • Research, design, and develop efficient code as required by the client for the software program
  • Modify the product to fix bugs and errors as determined by the QA test results
  • Create relevant software documentation in every stage of the development life cycle
  • Work with clients and project managers to develop and deploy software
  • Analyze and work on systems modifications and changes
  • Prepare reports on project specification and status
  • Work with the team for the successful creation of the program
  • Stay on top of development trends and integrate them into the development process when necessary

Qualifications of a Software Developer

  • Bachelor’s degree in computer science and other related educational backgrounds
  • Relevant experience in developing software—its methodologies and the whole software development life cycle
  • Knowledge of software development frameworks, like Angular, Django, jQuery, ASP.NET, Laravel, among others
  • Proficient in programming languages required by the company (e.g., Python, C++, and Java)
  • Working knowledge in using front-end tools and technologies
  • Great communication skills
  • Professionalism to work alone or as part of a team
  • High critical thinking skills
  • Great project management and time-management skills
  • Attention to details
  • Skilled in learning fast and adapting to new technologies

Best Practices for a Software Developer

  • Write a clean and efficient code that will meet client requirements and accomplish the goals of end-users
  • Make sure that proper documentation is done in a timely manner
  • Collaborate with other developers and team members to ensure that client requirements are met effectively
  • Maintain constant communication with clients and project managers to avoid misunderstandings
  • Keep an open mind about new technologies and how they can affect your project

Different Teams Interact within the Software Development Ecosystem.

It takes a village to develop and deploy software to the market that is error- and bug-free. And, that shows that software engineering vs. software development may have varied roles and responsibilities within the team. 

However, their tasks are interconnected. This means that one cannot properly function without the other. And both fields have to work together to get the job done according to the requirements of the client.

Are you looking for software engineers and software developers?

Full Scale has the right team ready to work on your project. We are an offshore software development company with a variety of customizable solutions based on your business needs. Moreover, our headquarter is in Kansas City, Missouri, but we have a delivery office in Cebu City, Philippines. 

Work with us to have cost-competitive software development resources available anytime. And, we have highly qualified engineers and developers in our talent pool. 

In addition to that, during the hiring process, every candidate undergoes a stringent technical assessment. That is why we are confident that every developer and engineer is highly qualified to work on your project.

Our client platform is also built with the clients in mind. Thus, managing your team remotely is only a click of a button away. There is one dashboard for the time clock, daily report, performance evaluation, and other details.

Lastly, when it comes to monthly billing, we offer a client-friendly, capped billing structure. This way, there are no surprises on your project’s budget. 

What’s more? You can retain the Intellectual Property Right of the software. And, we have a dedicated team structure that can work in your time zone.

Build your team quickly and affordably today!

Scroll to Top