The most common question we are asked after client meetings at NEWMEDIA is, “When will my site be done?”, and “Why is this taking so long?” The answer to these questions is partially up to the selected development team, and partly up to the client. When these two parties are in sync, the development is quicker and more effective , and it prevents any project miscommunication. That said, below are a few ways to make your web project more efficient and prevent it from taking too long.
Effective Discovery Phase
The discovery phase is one of the most important aspects of a web development project. The meetings that happen at this point are “happy/feel good” where a lot of ideas and concepts get discussed. In order to manage expectations and project scope, the deliverables and requirements should be clearly defined. By defining your scope early in the project, you can more easily manage client expectations and the project timeline. Also, schedule one or two additional discovery meetings, it will require more time investment upfront but will prevent your project from taking too long and keep everyone’s expectations aligned.
Plan Check-In & Status Updates
Discovery has been completed, scope has been agreed to, and now the heavy lifting begins for the development team. This time can often be filled with anxiety and uncertainty for clients because there is a lot to be done and the client might not have much visibility into the development process. A weekly check-in call or bi-weekly status update, can be beneficial for the developer and also the client. From the developer's perspective, these calls can provide answers to questions that have come up in development and address any potential roadblocks. Plus, it can be much easier to talk through these types of things rather than a long email chain back and forth! Regular meetings also help put the client's mind at ease by allowing them to see the progress along the way. Additionally,they can be proactive and complete any work to be done on their end in parallel with the development team. Finally, meetings are also a great way to get updates on development estimates and an efficient way of tracking the development items.
Just Launch It!
Don’t become your own launch blocker.Perfection is good but the reality is, while the world is watching, not everyone is looking at the details like you and the development team are. One of the biggest mistakes made by clients is they try to do everything under the sun during the initial launch of their site, which actually ends up dragging launch out for much longer than it should. It’s important to remember not every single feature is needed for launching a site, and focusing on key features and user experience is more important. By identifying these key features with clients, you are able to determine which items are most critical for launching and which items can be added post-launch. Doing so allows a site to be launched faster, and development doesn’t need to languish for a long period of time which keeps everyone’s focus on the finish line.
The world wide web is ever evolving and following these simple tips will help keep your project on the rails and prevent it from taking forever to launch. Contact the team of web development experts at NEWMEDIA today if you have any further questions or need advice for your own site launch!