I am working on a quality assurance system where some procedures might be in a state where they haven't yet been released because they are currently being worked on. They may have also been a previous release of the document, and the document I am trying to describe is the one with changes to the previous release.

An analogy might be how you would refer to Mac OSX 10.8 Mountain Lion - it isn't yet released, because it is still being worked on.

I have been calling it unreleased but this to me sounds awkward and doesn't really describe the state.

Is there a word that I'm overlooking that describes this?

  • If it’s not done yet, it’s not done yet. – tchrist Apr 30 '12 at 0:32
  • the unreleased update. I'm not sure there's a single word to describe what you want. – zpletan Apr 30 '12 at 0:34
  • In my experience millions of words have been used to describe and/or obscure this situation. – Hot Licks Dec 6 '16 at 19:36

I assume that "the document I am trying to describe is the one with changes to the previous release" means "the document I am trying to describe makes changes relative to the current release and is its successor".

Consider terms like next-generation, successor, in development, next-rev, pre-release, upcoming, and future or future version.

  • Yes your assumption is correct. Thanks those words will all be helpful synonyms for me :) – Zak Henry Apr 30 '12 at 1:05

Not a single word, but in the works is a common phrase in such situations:

being planned, worked on, or produced.



When talking of technical development, we mostly use in the pipeline.

There is a new version, Mountain Lion in the pipeline.


"In/under-production/development." Take your pick.


Another alternative would be in-process.


In progress can be used for such cases.

in progress: in session, currently being conducted, in the middle of, progressing.


It sounds like you are talking about a 'preliminary' version of the software, sometimes called an 'alpha' if it has a reasonable degree of functionality; a 'beta' usually means the features are frozen, but subject to change due to bug-fixing ( 'beta testers' are users who help find those bugs or provide feedback on small changes that might improve things ). The acronym 'WIP' ( for 'work in progress' ) is also sometimes used.


A document which is not yet in its final form can be referred to as a draft document or at the draft stage.

A new version of a previously released document can be a draft. For example: The current version of the procedure is defined in 1.2.47; the major revision to the procedure will be defined in document 1.3 which is currently is in draft. 1.3 will take effect when it has been approved and released.


I believe "pending" would be an appropriate, single word describing the situation.

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