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Why Sustainability in Software Development is Important

by Dragos Ruse
11 minutes read
Sustainability in Software Development HyperSense

Tech managers frequently prioritize short-term results above powerful effects. Sometimes they are pleased when workers stay late because they think it increases production. In actuality, this strategy is ineffective.

Sustainable software development produces significantly better outcomes. It’s a thorough strategy for maximizing the SDLC, resources, and personnel throughout use & software engineering. Sustainable software minimizes environmental damage, which is essential considering that ICT will be responsible for 14% of the world’s carbon footprint by 2040.

Product teams must incorporate proactive updates, reduce complexity, and consider the resources used by software, as well as other strategies to promote sustainability in software engineering. These extensive initiatives transform the entire sector and aid in the fight against climate change.

Are you interested in finding out why sustainability in software development is important? Read on to learn more.

What Does Sustainability Mean in Software Engineering?

Let’s first define what sustainable software engineering is. Many businesses claim to be using sustainable practices, but in reality, they have no idea what sustainable software actually entails. They produce solutions that nonetheless use excessive amounts of resources even though they adhere to a few sustainable software development standards.

The creation of sustainable software involves a broad strategy based on two key concepts. Firstly, product teams should strive to make their solutions as productive, economical, and environmentally friendly as they can. Secondly, product quality should rise as a result of optimization. The sustainability software technique is clarified in greater detail by the principles of sustainability given below.

Why Is Sustainable Software Development Essential For Product Teams?

Businesses are not easily persuaded to adopt new strategies despite the desire to make our planet greener. Typically, the transformation is only accelerated by corporate benefits or legal requirements.

The advantages of sustainability in software development are extensive. They enable product teams to develop solutions that concentrate on expansion rather than debugging. Teams are typically caught in a cycle of repairing errors and incurring losses when progress is unsustainable. On the other side, sustainability software development enables developers to continuously enhance their services despite the rise in complexity. They provide environmentally friendly software that consumes fewer hardware & human resources than conventional goods.

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Here are some of the primary advantages of sustainability software:

It is earth friendly. Environmental harm is reduced as a result of sustainable software development’s reliance on green techniques. Data centers will use 8% of the electricity produced worldwide by 2030. Computer systems’ carbon impact continues to increase. Therefore, it is vital that we start cutting back on the number of resources we use and emissions that ICT is responsible for right away.

Sustainability in software development implies a completely new engineering strategy. Sustainable software engineering revolutionizes SDLC methods while concentrating on ecology. Sustainability also involves maximizing the efforts of tech teams. Managers encourage genuine productivity rather than working overtime or on the weekends to fulfill deadlines. They spend time planning more intelligent work in order to be more productive afterward.

Revenue is increased by sustainable software because the teams that use it become more productive & motivated. Tech teams become more motivated when they believe their products have a genuine social benefit. They provide more innovative and effective solutions, which increase revenue. Discover more interesting stuff by reading our Digital Transformation Through Mobile Apps article.

Maintenance costs are decreased with sustainability development. Sustainable software is very cost-effective since it uses less power and lessens the demand on servers. Both product owners and end users care about it.

Sustainable software development reduces unforeseen expenses brought on by following new requirements from compliance. We will witness a number of new laws restricting carbon emissions and wasteful resource use in the future decades. By creating sustainable software, you can streamline compliance and get ready for the future. When governments enact regulations like these, you can comply without having to rewrite your product.

Software engineering sustainability makes your business a desirable place to work. When prospective workers understand how their job will advance the big concept, it may influence their decision to join your business. A competitive labor market with a shortage of qualified workers necessitates such a competitive advantage.

Last but not least, any tech company that wishes to rival industry giants must guarantee software sustainability. Sustainable design concepts help you produce long-lasting goods. They are adaptable enough to change with the market climate, which makes optimization more crucial.

Three Major Steps for Sustainable Software

Software development models, best practices, and methodologies must undergo a revolution to remain sustainable. Teams must assess the energy usage of their products in order to assure sustainability in software development. The majority of tech teams will have never done this one before. Being more environmentally conscious may therefore be difficult.

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Consider the sustainability tenets and take the suggested actions if you want to switch to sustainable programming.

Step 1: Prepare for sustainable software development and instruct your team on the process.

Only a small number of tech companies use sustainable programming techniques. Without creating strategic plans for the software’s longevity, they concentrate on meeting the needs of the current user. This means that in order to attain sustainability in software development, your current models must be rebuilt.

Implement automated testing, refrain from overdesigning, and use tools to determine the software’s environmental impact.

Step 2: For programming that is sustainable, use green coding.

Green code refers to code that has been written to reduce the algorithm’s overall power usage. Green coding lessens the energy demand on actual servers and systems in this way. It’s a popular strategy that makes sustainable programming possible.

In order to write green code, you have to:

  • Enhance energy-intensive features and often-used scenarios.
  • Delete unnecessary loops and features
  • Compression, a more effective caching policy, and a reduction in data exchange can all be used to improve data utilization.
  • Adapt the application’s actions to the device’s operating environment and power mode.
  • If your application has AI capabilities, pick an ML model that uses less energy.

Step 3: Assess your product’s impact

To find the modules you can optimize, you must lastly keep an eye on the software’s energy usage. It is a procedure that should be carried out step-by-step throughout the whole cycle of sustainable software engineering.

Examples of Green & Sustainable Software Development Projects

Leaders in the technology sector set trends in sustainable software engineering. They recognize the impact they have on society and respect their reputation in the marketplace. Check out these examples to learn what others are doing to promote software sustainability.

Facebook

Facebook published its Net Zero Commitment paper in 2020, reaffirming the readiness for resource-aware software engineering. They will achieve net-zero GHG emissions throughout their value chain in 2030.

Facebook employs circular economy approaches in its consumer products and server hardware to increase sustainability. They increase the lifespan of their hardware by incorporating repairability and recycling into design procedures.

Sustainability in software development will become a prevailing trend since IT leaders influence the industry. Every startup and technology firm that enters the market must adhere to the sustainability tenets and create the best possible solutions.

Apple

By 2030, Apple promised to have made all of its products and supply chain carbon neutral. In order to offset the remaining 25% of the carbon footprint, it intends to reduce emissions by 75%, as well as develop cutting-edge carbon removal technology. In order to reduce emissions, Apple has also created a 10-year climate strategy. It claims that recycled content is present in every newly released product, like the Apple Watch, iPad, iPhone, and Mac.

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Walmart

The biggest retailer in the world has implemented numerous digital changes to cut down on waste and energy consumption. Additionally, they make efforts to improve supply chain effectiveness by adopting more sophisticated sustainability software solutions.

For example, Walmart’s mobile app enables customers to make mobile rapid returns. To pay for goods, customers can scan QR codes at nearby retail establishments. In addition to saving them time, self-service lowers transportation use and associated CO2 emissions.

The HyperSense Approach to Sustainable Software Development

HyperSense is a software development company that has built apps involving sustainable software engineering for clients all around the world. In our work, we adhere to the principles of sustainable software development and we believe that software development processes should be ethical.

The technologies we use are improving the power consumption of the devices by reducing the frequency of their charging. The sustainable apps that we create, like the geolocation types, consume between 0.1% – 0.3% of the device’s battery per hour, taking into consideration that the device is relatively new, as well as its battery. We focus a lot on the efficiency of our working flow & on our developed apps. 

A great example of sustainability in software development at HyperSense is the CTC app, which follows automatization principles by reducing fuel consumption through the accurate delivery planning of chemical products. Their drivers’ schedule has become more organized and this helps reduce the delivery time. So we are thrilled to help another industry improve its own sustainability process through our conscious actions. 

We use the last generation of laptops with reduced power consumption. The building where we have our offices is entirely powered by solar panels, so we use sustainable electricity for our daily necessities. We encourage our employees to use the stairs instead of the elevator, and this has an impact on both their health & on the environment, by keeping it greener. Our sustainable actions also include collecting the trash separately and we expand our sustainable approach every day with new actions that impact ourselves & the environment in a positive way.

If you want to learn more about the sustainable activity we do, as well as about the sustainable apps we build, or if you want to create a sustainable software application for your business, don’t hesitate to reach us and schedule a meeting.

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