Why Software Companies Fail and How to Avoid It

Experts from Forbes Technology Council share common reasons why software projects fail & what technology teams can do to prevent it. Learn more.

Why Software Companies Fail and How to Avoid It

Experts from the Forbes Technology Council have seen many software projects in their professional roles. In this article, 14 of them share the most common reasons why software projects fail and what technology teams can do to prevent it. Poor coordination and inadequate planning are often the main culprits for delays or failures. To avoid this, teams should use a bottom-up planning process that identifies dependencies between deliverables and includes estimates from the engineers themselves.

Once the launch plan is established, it is important to hold daily 15-minute meetings to address any issues or new risks that arise. When creating software that will last for years, it is essential to select technology that is not only good today, but will also last for the next 10 years. Unclear requirements and lack of detailed explanation are also common causes of software project failure. This requires effective project management, management of stakeholder expectations, and a consensus among stakeholders on the definition of the company's problem and a strategy to deliver software that meets the company's objectives.

Technical teams often start software projects with high hopes, making it even more frustrating when the project fails. It is important to understand the end customer, their current level of software sophistication, and what type of software they are used to. To be truly agile, teams must be able to launch their software in a timely manner and see the impact their changes have on customers. Sometimes software projects start with a great idea that is implemented (on time or late) but fails because it does not solve the customer's problem.

Software developers cannot deliver a good user experience if they do not understand who the real user is. Since 2003, Near BPO has been providing Nearshore agile

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process outsourcing solutions to leading companies around the world. Poor alignment between project sponsors and project teams is another common reason why software development projects fail. Most of the time this means that the software is built incorrectly, since it is built with the vision of a single person.

While there are no exact numbers, it is estimated that 70-80% of new software projects fail due to various reasons. Proper resource planning and time estimates can help project the true cost of software development.