You are all set for an impending merger with an organization that is likely to quadruple your earnings. All the necessary rubrics and financials have been analyzed and everything seems perfect.
Or perfect in your language, but not fundamentally!
Many organizations in the process of merging or even otherwise, should not forget the important aspect of Code audit. A code audit is very rare in the world of business, but it is a great chance to look through your existing code base and make it better than before! Code audits help you save everything that’s working and further build on that.
Code audits are mission-critical to a seamless transfer and include an exhaustive review of the software or the product’s code with a simple purpose – to ensure it is of high quality, secure and feasible. Many organizations think that this exercise is counterproductive and absolutely futile, but the benefits of a code audit will be experienced for years to come. As a matter of fact, a study states that each hour spent in code review saves approximately 33 hours in maintenance.
Let us understand the basics in detail
What is a code audit?
A code audit is a specialized code review where the software’s architecture is thoroughly analyzed to ensure and determine if it works well for your business. Some of the things associated with it are security risks, out-of-date tools, complexities that hide bugs and missing out on benchmark practices that will lead to deeper troubles for the organization. Talking about code audits, there are three basic types that we follow:
Back-end code audits – where we test the code which makes your software work
Front-end code audit – where we test the code which accelerates your user interface
Infrastructure audits – where we test the entire system on which your code runs
So, the main crux of the exercise is to see if your current software is in a position to handle the future of your business. As a result, two things will happen, one is you will be presented with a list of updates that will ensure your product comes in line with the current best practices, and the other a near-perfect estimate of what all it will encompass to make it.
The need for Code review
The answer to this question is a big YES! In fact, you have reached this point in the blog itself says that you think you may need a code audit on a project. To simplify it, we give you signs that you need a code audit:
>> Your product is obsolete and irrelevant in today’s time
>> Some inherent and nagging performance issues
>>Something is really not right about the software but what it is exactly, you are not aware
>>Security and stability compromise
>>Poor User experience
Now if you are experiencing any of these, then you surely need a code audit, but what if you are not experiencing any of these? Are you in the clear? No, because you still need a code audit. Whether you have a functional product already or you are in the process of pushing it to market, a code audit is needed. If something goes wrong at any point in time with the product, the code audit will help you root out the problem. In Chapter247 we follow the practice of putting together the most important, useful, and valuable reports to get to the roots of the problem and correct it.
How we do Front-end code audits
With this audit, we look at the code that hampers user experience. This primarily focuses on two things namely speed and responsive design. For web design or software to thrive, these are the biggest needs and they are the most important parameters that need auditing. We also take into account the cropping up of new features and ensure they work their way into the audit process. While observing the site speed, a major part of the performance audit, we test the site or the software to see how well it performs the job it is supposed to be doing. The important questions to consider are whether it is calling too many non-required and unneeded files? Or it is using images and font sizes that are very big? Or may to find out if the structure of the code is interfering with the page load process.
By asking these relevant questions, we list out issues that slow the load time leading to usage drop-offs, lower conversion rates, and eventually poor profit realization.
Our front-end audits also include a search for reusable code which can be helpful for developers, designers, and users!
The responsive part of the front-end code audit holds immense importance. We look at factors that will help your web-page to size down to mobile. We take a look at the code, see how it is organized or boxed, and understand where things break. But it also required looking at the design and information hierarchy, so that we know how things will be working on mobile to accomplish the same goals. So, it is all about trying to understand the domain, the pages, flows so that an educated decision can be made about how to structure things going forward.
Another point to take into consideration is that improving site speed and creating mobile-friendly pages doesn’t lead to just customer satisfaction, it also helps them find your site. Google is increasingly providing SEO value to user experience. If you want your site to rank high in search then it needs to be rapid and great on mobile.
How we do back-end audits
Our back-end code audit services help us dig deep into your code and databases. This will help us assess the complexity of the code, understand the stability, and find any potential security risks. Hence, it is not just about code quality but the entire ecosystem of what the code base talks to and what interacts with the code base. To begin with, we initiate with a fairly standard code audit checklist. One of the foremost things we check is whether your code has any dependencies on out-of-date tools. This is an important check for code audit because otherwise upgrading will become complicated. After this initial check, we then look at the code itself to see if the code was written by someone who is familiar with the community standard structure and layout. If the code does not conform to surface-level best practices, then get ready for deeper surprises. We possess tools to run tests inspecting the quality of the code so that we can assimilate where the pitfalls are.
Finding out about the patterns and lines of code that will help hide the complexity, can help us find something called ‘code smell’. This is a developer’s code to understand that the code shows signs of deeper problems. The closer the code is to standards, the more stable it is going to be and easier it is going to be to build on it. Once we have analyzed the basics of the code, we can focus on areas that might be important to your business similar to how an API is set up or whether there are additional security issues.
How we do infrastructure audit
This is slightly different than front-end and back-end code audits. Instead of focusing on the code base itself, our analysis spans on how the DevOps team runs that code on your network of servers. We ensure that the architecture is secured and your servers are running up-to-date software so there are no potential risks. By engaging in an infrastructure audit, it is also a way to understand if the systems are running efficiently. The audit improves site speed by ensuring the servers can deliver diligently. Such audits also help to make updates to the site to run faster by evaluating DevOps practices and detecting opportunities to speed up deployment processes.
What happens after the code audit?
It all depends on the result of the code audit report. The outcomes for each product are completely different and it solely depends on the client’s business decision. Once we reach this point, we usually ask our clients the following questions:
What is your ultimate aim for the product?
Is the organization happy with the results, conversions, or KPIs?
What stands in the way of achieving those results?
Do you get complaints about faulty user experience?
Is the product not keeping up with the technical standards and performance?
These are just a few points each client can address with their team. Our job as a custom software development company is to find those issues through an audit. After a code audit, we can make a definitive plan for the future of your business starting with a stable and secure code base.
Interested in growing your business? Let’s talk.