OutSourcing Web Design & Development – It’s All About the Process!
Whether your a sole entrepreneur or you run a business with multiple employees you’ve probably debated on whether or not you should outsource your projects or keep them in-house and use precious resources within your company.
You might have an amazing idea, a revolutionary app that you want developed, or a social gimmick that you’re positive is going to turn viral. The problem is that just having an idea these days is simply not enough. In today’s competitive industry you need to know if you have the correct knowledge and a qualified team to turn that idea into a live successful product.
Web Design, development, UI and marketing are only some of the things you need to take into consideration when developing your next big idea. Even if you’re a business that wants a simple site make-over, you still have to take into consideration lots of things. Which parts of your current site are crucial? Is everything needed in the new site? What’s the objective of the site, for example lead generation or branding? and, what are the characteristics of your target audience? – All of these things have to be taken into consideration and unfortunately sometimes you might not know how to go about understanding them, forcing you to work with third party professionals.
Now, I’ve heard that outsourcing can leave a bitter taste, as many have fallen on charlatan companies who are just looking to make quick money, providing low level services, final products that are full of errors and endless hassle. But, on the other hand, if you land on a group of professionals that care about your product as much as you do, the benefits are countless.
Apart from saving on costs, time and resources, if you land on a group of professionals that can accompany you all the way until you launch, you will receive a great final product and maybe learn a thing or two while you’re at it.
Whether you decide to use our services (TechSors) or not, here is our 5 stage methodology that you might want to look at and remember when developing your next project using an outsource company.
The TechSors 5 Stage Methodology
Stage 1 – Research and Planning
During this stage we will always meet with the client to determine the purpose of the project, understand the type of look-&-feel that is preferred and reach a rough framework that will match the project’s objectives, should it be generating more traffic, branding, lead generation, affiliation or any other objectives determined by the client. It doesn’t matter if you’re developing a site or mobile application, you should always know what are your goals.
At TechSors, we believe that it is important to understand our client’s present and future plans allowing us to customise and develop a proper structure for the product, that will give the client complete flexibility should any changes be required in the future. During the research stage, we always observe analytics or accumulated data that the client has. If you are renewing your site or transferring it over to a different CMS, this helps us understand important site junctions, current pages that cause friction and objects that grab wanted/unwanted user attention. According to the conclusions, we always provide a plan of action that needs to be agreed upon by the client before we can move forward.
Stage 2 – Wire Frame
Based on the conclusions from Stage 1, we then develop wireframes (screen sketches) of the project. The Sketches summarise the logical design of the interface and include details such as the controls in the screen, the size and location of each control, etc. The idea behind the wireframes is to deliver a general concept which includes layout, navigation and operation principles end-to-end. This stage is especially important as we want the client to have a visual concept of his/her idea before it is designed and developed. This also helps us from backtracking during later stages of the project.
Stage 3 – Visual & Motion Design
After the conceptual frame is created, we begin working on the system’s look and feel, fitting the right design language and suiting a tailor-made set of icons to correspond. We never say no to a good animation & transitioning effects. We always try to understand the client’s preferred look and feel by providing examples of designs and questioning the client on similar projects that he/she liked.
This stage is the most important stage as it normally determines the look of your project and will often influences your brand’s appearance.
Stage 4 – Development
Development of the project is always done according to the prior stages that were agreed upon. The development side of the project takes into consideration the logical design of the interface and conclusions reached throughout previous stages. Knowing the overall look of the site, we then continue to the GUI tier, binding all the beautiful elements and behaviour to the backend with front-end techniques and tools. We make it come to life and tuck it all into a great package, working closely with server side developers to make sure the your project runs seamlessly.
Stage 5 – Maintenance
Following the development of your project we provide ongoing support and maintenance according to the Techsors general maintenance services. This ensures that the client receives service within reasonable time and ensures delivery from our side, irrespective to our availability.
While we always work in iterations allowing you to be a part of the process, we understand that the hard work comes after we have delivered the goods. We don’t just launch your product and leave you to fend for yourself. TechSors provides ongoing support, analyzes the product to look for room for improvement and is available constantly to cater your needs.
Our Final Thoughts
Whether you decide to outsource or not really depends on your situation, finances and company’s deadlines. Just remember that in most cases, its not about whether you want to outsource or not, either who’s the outsourcing team you’re going to work with. Always interview them before you dive into the project, define deadlines and make sure that the company you are working with has organised work procedures that match your company’s expectations and work culture.