Breaking down how we work and what goes into each project.
Typical project duration
We’ve outlined our typical project costs on our pricing page. Projects in this range typically take us between three and six months to go from nothing to a production release.
Below we discuss more about how we work and how we assemble our teams so you can get a better handle on why our projects take this amount of time.
How we work
We try constantly to simplify and improve our process for completing software projects. We iterate on our approach just as we iterate during the development cycle of a project. We’ve simplified down into an easy-to-digest four-step process.
We start by going through a brief requirement gathering process. During this time, we iron out all the “nitty gritty” details regarding the implementation of your project. We work with you to discuss your current situation and desired outcome. This part of the phase is brief, as we do most of the requirements gathering work before we will even write a project proposal.
The rest of this phase is getting you and your team into all of our tools. We’ll begin loading the project into Target Process, our Project Management software. We’ll add you to the project channel(s) in Slack, our instant messaging software. We’ll make sure our project team has your email and phone number and that you have theirs.
Initial UX Definition
While we continue updating our design and prototypes during the development phase of the project, this phase is where it all starts. During this phase, our designer and project manager will work with you to create user personas, user journey maps, and a UI kit.
User personas are representations of each type of user who will interact with your software. Say, for example, you are building a new mobile app. Your customers will interact with the mobile app, you’ll have customer support working with it, and you’ll have system administrators monitoring it. Those three types of users will become personas, being assigned a name, cartoon image, and some characteristics. These personas will help our designers and developers when creating the features of the app.
User journey maps plot out the emotional experience of your users while they’re interacting with the app. Using the example above, we’ll take each of the personas and create “maps” for common use cases. These are to make our designers and developers aware of the emotional state of the users when determining how to build the features of the app. These journey maps allow us to create an empathic solution for your business (link to blog here).
Finally, we finish this phase by creating a UI kit for your application. The UI kit defines the layout of the app, the menu styles, and the controls. Our designers use the UI kit throughout the design and development phase to maintain consistency throughout the duration of the project.
Design and Development
We use an agile approach when building software. We are certified by the Scrum Alliance. We adapt quickly to change because of the way we run each project.
We run two-week development “sprints”, where we scope out a small two-week work schedule of the next features and bug fixes. During each sprint, we have daily stand-up meetings to ensure our designers and developers are being efficient.
We use our small team to our advantage by taking a unique approach to QA. We assign each user story to a developer to work on. When the developer completes the story, it gets reviewed. Upon completion of the review, the story then gets assigned to another developer to serve as QA. This QA developer tests the acceptance requirements outlined in the story definition and tests various potential side effects caused by the story.
Finally, we close out each sprint with a demo to you and/or your staff. Here we verify with you that the completed work satisfies the required business values and is acceptable for you. If you cannot attend a demo every two weeks, we can record a demo and send it to you to watch on-demand. When the sprint is over, we release the code to the beta app or the production app, depending on your setup.
We repeat the development cycle over and over until we have satisfied all business requirements.
Our final phase is the release phase. This phase is fairly simple: we re-test the requirements and features one more time, then schedule a date to go live with the application. Upon the completion of the release, we provide two weeks of business-hours support at no additional cost.