Taking Your Product From Concept to Launch - The Endertech Way
Have you spent any time this month planning or just daydreaming about an idea you have?
As a software development company, we speak to dozens of people each month at every stage of the idea process, from those who are unsure how realistic their idea is, to those ready to build a program, app, or website. Learn about our Concept to Launch process – the Endertech way.
We understand that taking your product from concept to launch is a big deal.
Not only are there logistical considerations to be made, like deadlines and budgets, but there are emotional considerations to be made, too. Naturally, bringing your vision to life will feel very personal. At Endertech, we’re sensitive to this reality, which is why we take a systematic approach to helping you bring your idea from concept to launch.
PLAN → DESIGN → DEVELOP → LAUNCH → SUPPORT
To give you an insight to our systematic approach, we”ll walk you through a hypothetical project similar to many we complete.
Imagine you approach us with a product idea for software that would improve how companies manage their business. Here’s how you can build it, the Endertech way.
Success starts with a clear vision.
You have a good idea and you can envision the result you want… but perhaps you’re not quite sure exactly the steps to get from your idea to an actual product.
Be prepared to take time to develop clarity with your team defining the steps to turn your vision into a reality. You’ll want to work with a group of experts guided by ethics who will prioritize listening, understanding, and looking for solutions for the best possible outcome. That’s a good reason to choose a partner like Endertech!
We believe starting with a clear vision is the right thing to do AND the best approach to successful software development. We invest a lot of time and resources on the front-end of projects to develop a deep understanding of you, your vision, and your goals. We take time to work through potential roadblocks and address concerns head-on before they can jeopardize the building phase of a project.
Instead of giving you a financial estimate on day one, our software development process begins with consultation and planning, then moves into brainstorming and wire-framing, and ends with a clearly documented plan and a comprehensive project estimate.
We’ve learned that by following this system, and developing a set of documentation that gives our developers and designers the clarity they need to build your vision, everyone involved wins.
Just as you’d hire an architect to draft blueprints if you were building a new home, our team of experts work with you to draft a plan for your project to succeed. This type of planning usually accounts for only 5-10% of the overall project budget, yet delivers an estimate, barring change orders, that allows you to be confident about your total costs and timeline.
But it’s important to note, we don’t expect to create perfect plans. We understand that there will be discovery and new information to consider as the building occurs. So it’s important to maintain flexibility. In fact, we guide our clients to start as simply as possible, with an MVP – minimally viable product. In our experience, keeping a new project lean allows for the most agile and impactful adjustments and growth once the product launches and user-feedback starts coming in.
The most important consideration in the planning phase is that we don’t want to get into a situation where major changes to the code are required because that can be expensive and time-consuming. Just imagine building a home with a kitchen on the wrong side of the house. How upsetting would it be to have to tear that down, revise, and rebuild? We take the time to build out a clear vision to avoid big mistakes.
How do we create the blueprint to realize your vision?
We kick off the blueprint phase with an in-person meeting in our Los Angeles office.
A group of Endertech designers and developers will meet with you and listen to your ideas, asked you questions, and cover several whiteboards in notes – detailing how the user will experience your software. Together we’ll make choices about functionality, and make design decisions that allow our team to analyze how they’ll need to approach building your software.
You’ll return to our office shortly to meet with the team again.
We’ll review wireframes we develop, that translate the rough written breakdown of your idea into a visualization that starts to picture how your software will come to life as an app. We discuss the big picture and small details from a development perspective and from a design angle to ensure that we understand what you want.
We continue to meet regularly to review the progress of the wireframes and the gradual development of your idea into a tangible, functional plan.
These initial wireframes will be very low-fi to help everyone solidify what the concept would look like quickly. Beginning with low-fi wireframes allows you to quickly see a vision of what you think you want and allows you to start considering factors and decisions that may not have occurred to you yet.
We begin then to work on a deeper level of detail, asking details about functions, where buttons should go, what they should say, what security rules should exist, and much more… all factors that are critical for the person building and coding the site to understand.
Once your vision for your product is sufficiently captured and detailed in wire-frame format, we use those wire-frames to produce the project backlog.
The project backlog is the written set of instructions for the software developers. It’s the actual blueprint for your concept to launch plan – a set of tasks, each broken down to no more than a few days of estimated effort. It covers technical details like database structure, workflow and validation rules, security, and the other non-visual aspects of any complex software project.
This outline provides the level of detail needed to create both an accurate estimate and clear instructions that the developers need to make good on that estimate.
Soon, you get to try out your product!
As we build out an MVP, we invite you and your team to test out the early prototypes as they are in development. Be prepared to examine work-in-progress and provide feedback. There will be bugs!
After internal iterations to polish up your MVP, we approach alpha and beta testing where we rely on feedback from non-technical users who are not part of the project team. This testing process allows us to gauge what “normal” users think and experience that us techies, and you as the visionary, might take for granted. Taking the real-life user experience into consideration during the building process allows Endertech to produce a product with a high degree of polish for our clients.
Our planning will pay off! High quality inputs make a high quality output so much more likely!
This combination is great because we know that in the future, many software systems will need to evolve to support integration with 3rd parties and various devices. So, a service-based backend with API Platform and React is the way to go many times.
By taking the time to understand your vision for your product, we’ll help you decide both the platform upon which to build your product, and many of the design details that will be critical to your early success.
Concept to Launch – the short version.
The nature of building a software product, plucked from the imagination, requires regular communication, testing, and adjustment. It can be an intimidating, frustrating, and confusing process. But at Endertech, we prefer to make it an approachable, exciting, and engaging one instead.
We believe in investing time up-front to really understand our clients and to document a clear path to success while allowing flexibility for the natural evolution of the creative process. We like to be honest, transparent, and clear.
Thanks to good communication, openness, and a fluid approach to building, we develop powerful products that our clients love. You will feel the value each step of the way, with our regular face to face meetings as we tailored your product to mirror your vision.
Quality takes time, commitment, communication and we’re here for it. We’re here for you. We’re here for your success.
And with our simple, sincere desire to make software development exciting for you, we’d love the opportunity to honestly advise you on what we think the wisest approach to developing your new product is.