Just like in our lives or businesses, no matter what technology, methodology or use case is associated with software, there is an evolution to what matters most. New challenges and opportunities are presented with each major evolution of custom solutions. Addressing these from a position of deep technical experience as well as business wisdom provides a seamless path for the near and long term goals simultaneously.
When a company brings on external developers as individuals, they are making an unspoken claim that they, the company, have the tools and experience to define and execute on the process a development team should use to achieve the desired outcomes. When a company chooses to partner with an existing cross-functional team of developers, they are making a separate unspoken claim that they are accepting of methods that they are not well versed in, as long as the outcomes align with the expectations. Bringing on external, individual developers is a perfectly fine approach, though there may still be reasons to consider working with a dedicated team.
This key distinction is the difference between, not just great outcomes, but massive growth regarding the norms of creating and maintaining software. This is true for companies that use custom software internally AND companies that monetize software to end users.
We at ArchitectNow work with our clients by providing highly skilled cross-functional teams to move through scopes of work of all shapes and sizes. We continually refine and improve upon the “how” so that our clients can focus on contributing to the “what”.
Our Agile teams are equipped to do deep research with our clients to build towards ideal outcomes while also being capable to embrace change at regular intervals. As a scope of work progresses, we regularly probe and challenge assumptions to find every opportunity to improve upon the originally defined goals.
Together, every step of the way, we work through defining the “definition of done” in detail. Once we have enough defined to begin work, our development team starts building to the outcomes defined by our client and our internal Product Owner. Every two weeks we complete small segments of this work to share with the client for feedback to make sure, at frequent and regular intervals, that we have the correct definition of done.
Not only do our clients get to define the “definition of done” with our guidance on what impacts come as a result, but they have the opportunity to be actively engaged in reviewing progress as well as testing functionality along these two week sprints. This close coordination allows our clients to stay in touch with progress, outcomes, changes and budget throughout our engagement.
The software development industry has almost infinite use cases, though there are clear instances where hiring a full consulting team is better than simply onboarding a few individual developers who don’t have extensive experience working together. Defining risk and uncertainty in enough detail to translate into actual hours spent and dollars is a super power we are proud to have developed at ArchitectNow. Without this level of anticipation, surprise costs and delays can emerge out of seemingly simple problems.
All of this means that when our clients trust our process and are focused on great outcomes, we can deliver great software in a known budgets with minimal speed bumps along the way. When clients have their own process they want our teams to adhere to, we don’t get to leverage the years of practice working the way we do or do enough research to understand what risks we need to be aware of mitigating.
Whenever we work with a client on project work there are typically at least three phases of deliverables: project preparation and infrastructure, delivered features to production environment, as well as a transition phase.
In the beginning of any engagement, we work with our clients to rapidly get broad as well as specific requirements. After some legal paperwork is handled, we start on a discovery period together to go deep on what we are building defining measures of success as well as tangibly creating a backlog of development work to start verifying our original estimates and expectations. Assuming we move forward from that stage, we start setting up infrastructure, getting our development team on-boarded to the context and scope of work to kick off our first sprint.
Throughout this whole process, our clients are heavily involved and see outcomes unfold as well as take opportunities to potentially adjust course to suit new goals which may arise. Since all work we do is the property of our clients, we can pause or stop any time and hand over assets and materials.
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