Recession or Credit Crunch time imposes heavy restrictions on a company’s spending. Generally where a company can hire 10 developers, they are forced to reduce this to 5 or less developers.

Not just that, each individual is required to pick up the work of 2 or more individuals and also, wear multiple hats such as analysis, development, mentoring, project management, deployment, testing and user training. This means that a smaller development team is required to develop the same size and quality of a project as a larger team did before.

A lot of time in the project is taken up for design. However, once the database design is in place, a team is required to develop a series of screens that allow the end users to quickly get a feel for the project and be able to do Create, Retrieve, Update and Delete operations on the underlying database.

Add to this, requirements such as search, filtration, pagination, etc. The requirements and expectations don’t stop there. You will have the higher management asking for Rich Internet Experience and Google-like search.

In the recent past, I have been involved in many projects where the requirements have been similar to what I have described above for some small to medium sized business clients.

So what tools and frameworks really work in such situations you may ask. I have been using the following:

  • Java / J2EE
  • JSF
  • RichFaces
  • JBoss Seam
  • Java Persistence API (JPA) driven by Hibernate
  • PostgreSQL database
  • JBoss Application Server
  • Linux

The above stack is not only fantastic for developer productivity, it also provides fantastic TCO (Total Cost of Ownership). Depending upon the kind of support requirements, the stack can cost anything from Free to GBP 100,000 a year apart from the hardware costs. As the above stack offers a high developer productivity, the cost of development goes down significantly as well. And so does the time. Of course, these two depend largely upon the complexity of the project.

Interesting isn’t it? Especially when you consider that many organizations spend a few Hundred Thousand Pounds on just keeping their applications running!!! Of course, for larger organisations and banks, this cost alone can run into Millions of Pounds.

2 Responses to “Developing Software in Recession”

  • You’re described of IT companies & plp working there during recession is damm accurate.
    Been reading and facing the heat of recession for long…was wondering, every one knows what the problem is… but no one ever spoke of a resolution.
    Tools and frameworks listed above are rich technologies and best is that they r open source.
    I can conclude that developing software’s during recession is no more a challenge :)

  • During non-recession times, anyone can get a job and anyone can do business. But during recession, only the most socially responsible business models survive.

    It is important to see what is going to deliver the best value. And the stack I have described above can be used to do just that.

    Imagine going from a database table to a web application with complete Create, Retrieve, Update and Delete functionality within half an hour!!!

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