Documentation can relate to two different types: products and processes. Product documentation describes the product under development and provides guidelines on how to execute actions with it. Process documentation, on the other hand, relates to all the material created during development.
Product documentation tends to include requirements, technical specifications, commercial rationale, and product manuals. In contrast, process documentation includes aspects like obligatory standards, material outlining the wider project, plans, test itineraries, general reports, and even generic notes. Broadly, the difference between the two is that product documentation details an object (be it tangible or digital), and process documentation details the timeline of creation.
A software development requirements document acts as the blueprint for hiring a software development company and offers valuable information about how software products should be developed. This document should include:
Introduction: The introduction of the SRS has to cover the document conventions, the purpose, references, intended audience, and the scope of the document. The system offers an overview of the software application to be created, defines the long-term objectives, sets the project's tone, and offers all participants clarity about the project.
System requirements and functional requirements: The system and functional requirements section consist of the features and perspective of the product, operating environment and operating system, design limitations, user documentation, and graphics requirements.
External interface requirements: Interface requirements refer to the software and hardware interfaces and the user and communication interfaces.
User interfaces include the screen layout, functions, buttons, and style guides.
The software interfaces contain the database system, the platform, frontend and backend frameworks, tools, libraries, and operating systems.
Hardware interfaces consist of the hardware component details like the nature of data, supported devices, and interactions.
Communications interfaces should cover the network server protocols and the required communication standards.
Non-functional requirements: Non-functional requirements should include:
Software quality attributes
In general, software project documentation should include
User documentation including tutorials, how-to guides, explanations and reference docs, and videos detailing the functionalities of the software.
Developer documentation including system documentation, API documentation, README, and release notes.