The organisation that I currently work for re-visited its application development standards recently. The approach used was to agree on the “Principles” that development should adhere to. From these principles some detailed Standards were then developed to guide the development of code. This detail might include some checklists that can be used to guide developers in the design of their code. But beware!! These checklists should not be applied only at the quality assurance gates (i.e. when code gets implemented in Production), but rather right at the start of code design, so that adherence is not an after-thought but becomes a way of life for project teams.