What Is a Dynamic Systems Development Method?

Kristie Lorette
Kristie Lorette
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Businessman giving a thumbs-up

The Dynamic Systems Development Method, or DSDM, is one process that computer system developers can use to create new computer systems. The name of the method includes the word dynamic because it is a method that is constantly changing, or it is a dynamic approach to developing the systems. The Dynamic Systems Development Method is comprised of a five-phase process: feasibility, business, functional model iteration, design and implementation.

During the feasibility phase of the Dynamic Systems Development Method, the problem or issue is identified. In other words, the system that is going to be developed will resolve or address the issue or problem presented during this stage of the process. During this phase, the method checks to see if the application needs to be developed with Rapid Application Development (RAD) approach, which uses incremental prototyping. If the RAD approach is appropriate, then the Dynamic Systems Development Method can continue to the business phase.

The business phase of the method requires a matching of the requirements of the business that the system is being developed for and the information that the system can provide. As long as the system can provide what the business needs then the development of the system can continue on to the third phase, which is the functional model iteration phase.

The functional model iteration phase involves building the prototype of the system. Users of the system then evaluate the prototype to ensure the information output is the information that the business seeks. After running tests on the prototype, the user then provides feedback to the developer to make any tweaks or necessary changes to adjust the output of the system. The functional model iteration stage is typically broken down into two or three trials until the system and any subsequent software programs associated with the system meet the required needs.

Once the model is brought to its final stage, the next phase of the Dynamic Systems Development Method is the design phase. During the design phase, the model is engineered into the actual system. In other words, the system and any software used with the system are brought to its final stage.

The final stage of the Dynamic Systems Development Method is the implementation stage. This is when the system and software is tested as the final product to detect any new bugs or bugs that were not corrected between the model and the design stage transition. Once the system is tested, then it is rolled out and fully implemented across the board.

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