Maintenance Phase in SDLC

Instructor: Noel Ransom

Noel has taught college Accounting and a host of other related topics and has a dual Master's Degree in Accounting/Finance. She is currently working on her Doctoral Degree.

The maintenance phase is the final step in the Software Development Life Cycle. This lesson explains the process and outcomes of the maintenance phase.

Maintenance Phase

Matt is a project manager assigned to deliver a software application to an insurance company. After Matt's project team completes the coding and implementation phases of the Software Development Life Cycle, the product is deployed to the insurance company. Now that the insurance company has the software, and the software is working as intended, Matt's team meets with the insurance company to provide instructions for the maintenance and upkeep of the software. The maintenance phase of the SDLC occurs after the product is in full operation. Maintenance of software can include software upgrades, repairs, and fixes of the software if it breaks.

Software applications often need to be upgraded or integrated with new systems the customer deploys. It is often necessary to provide additional testing of the software or version upgrades. During the maintenance phase, errors or defects may exist, which would require repairs during additional testing of the software. Monitoring the performance of the software is also included during the maintenance phase.


Matt meets with the insurance company to provide maintenance instructions, and explains that the insurance company is now responsible for the upgrades and monitoring of the software. Now that the software is fully operational, the project team closes the project. A few weeks later, the software application has an error that prevents employees from updating critical customer data. The business leaders refer to their maintenance plan and attempt to repair the defects in the software program. After a few days of maintenance and coding, the company's information technology team repairs the defect and the software is fully operational.

The information technology team continues to monitor the software to ensure it produces the company's desired result. If any of the employees have additional problems with the application, the employees can create a repair request for the information technology team. Once the IT team receives the request, it then identifies where the issue occurs, determines the cause of the issue and develops code to resolve the defect. After the team repairs the defect, the team notifies employees that the issue has been fixed. The company's employees can now resume full use of the software.

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