THE WORK WE DO AND HOW WE DO IT
Our Web Design and Development Process
We have designed our process with a proper Software Development Life Cycle framework. This framework is designed to ensure quality of output and to also specifically overcome the three challenges listed above.
In our high-level project management, our websites now follow a consistent 4 step process, with the same steps and standard communication. As you use our web development services, you will get used to this process and enjoy its flow. The purpose of this document is to provide you with a feel for the flow of the website design and development we do and also to give you an understanding of how you should work with our team to get the best results possible.
The steps in the processes are:
- Project Setup and Briefing Phase
- Website Design Phase
- This phase includes 3 alteration opportunities to perfect the design
- Website Development Phase
- This phase includes 3 alteration opportunities to perfect the website
- Website Promotion and Go Live Phase
- This step includes our 18 point quality check in the live environment
The Brief, Collateral, Content and Logins
To successfully complete any project with a minimum of delays, we ask that you provide the requirements we need for the entire project, as soon as you can. Often things like content and logins are the things that hold up a project. The items that are most critical are:
Once we send you the brief, we ask that you fill it out in a timely fashion, completely. The more information you give in the brief, the smoother the design phase of the project will run. We will not start design work without a complete brief.
Logins for Hosting:
Please supply the logins for the server that will host the website earlier rather than later. This gives us the opportunity to test the server for size, speed and configuration before we start loading the live website. If we have the opportunity to check this at the start of a project, it gives you weeks to resolve potential issues in advance, rather than finding issues at the end of the project causing delays in delivery.
Logos, images and any other collateral for the website delivered early, will ensure a smooth design and development process.
This is often the biggest hold up for a website project. Preparing content is a time consuming task. It should be worked on from the start of the project so it is ready for implementation as soon as the Development Phase begins. Typically you have 2 weeks to collate all content prior to us requiring it. Within our processes we have included standard communications at the critical points where non delivery of these items by you will result in an extension of the delivery date of the project. Please try and ensure timely delivery of all requirements, but respect that in cases where there is a holdup at your end, to ensure the quality of our process and deliverables, we will need additional time to complete the website.
Communication and Sharing Screens
While it is sometimes difficult for our team to sit next to you and “point” to the website as we go through the design and development phases, we certainly have the tools available to do this technologically. As such we have integrated standard “Skype” or Online Meetings within our processes, to ensure we have the opportunity to work together, to deliver a timely and quality project. We find that the best, smoothest projects are the ones where clients embrace these opportunities and use the time to work closely with us to progress the projects. Conversely, the projects where these meetings are avoided by clients tend to result in projects that require more alteration cycles and a longer timeframe for successful completion.
Alterations and Attention To Detail
In our website projects, in both the design phase and the development phase,we have 3 cycles of review and alterations to get the websites done to your satisfaction. To ensure quality and an attention to detail for each cycle, we have developed the following review process:
- All these changes will be managed on a Google Spreadsheet. You will be given access to this spreadsheet at the beginning of the project and you are welcome to use it to input all your changes.
- Collate all your changes at each cycle (either in the spreadsheet or in a way that works best for you.
- If you use the spreadsheet, please put each incremental change on a separate line.
- If you did not use the spreadsheet, we will input each change on a separate row on the spreadsheet and ask you to review for accuracy and completeness.
- Once the spreadsheet has every change on a separate line, our designer/developer will make the changes and sign them off in the spreadsheet as complete
- The spreadsheet will then be sent internally to a senior developer in our team who will review the change and counter sign if everything is done to satisfaction. This checkpoint is aimed at ensuring a quality completion of all tasks, before sending back to you.
- Once the work has been completed and reviewed successfully, it will be sent back to you for final sign off. Please review and provide final approval at your earliest convenience. As a general point we have implemented this internal two part approval system for all website work undertaken. We recognise the massive time burden poorly managed website projects can be to you, so we continue to look for ways to minimise the burden on your time. The major thing that causes absorption of time with website projects is excessive back and forth, alterations and updates. The Skype meetings and our two point quality checks are both designed to minimise the back and forth, thereby streamlining delivery of the end product.
Changes of Scope
Occasionally we find that a project changes scope midway through the process. There are two scenarios when this occurs:
- A project will grow, with additional requirements being added to the original brief
- A project will completely change direction In the first scenario, our process will highlight the scope changes and provide a quote and review of delivery timelines for inclusion in the existing project. You will have the opportunity to accept the new costs and delivery timelines or revert back to the original scope. Often a preferred option is to complete the initial project, then complete the additions as a Post Implementation project. In the second scenario, we will revert to and review the project briefing phase of our project process with you and depending on the extent of the change in direction, potentially restart the project. Again, you will be provided with a new quote (which will include the time already spent on the original project) and deadline. You will have the opportunity to accept the new costs and delivery timelines or revert back to the original scope.