What Your Web Development Partner Wants You To Know
Whether your current web CMS prevents you from delivering great experiences for your customers and a website renewal is in your future, or it's time to upgrade or migrate your website, make your next project run smoothly with these tips from specialists in web development and design.
Three Things To Help Find The Right Partner
Advice from Sales & RFP response team:
- The current situation: Finding an agency that is a good fit is as important to you as it is to the agency. Alignment on things like corporate culture (ie. we like to work in the same way), core competencies, technology, budgets, and timelines, matter.
- Your strengths: Again, it’s all about finding the right fit. Knowing what your own team is capable of doing will allow you to identify the gaps you need to fill for your project and the right agency that can fill them. Communicating this to potential web design companies will allow them to tailor the project experience to suit your needs, which means you’ll get more bang for your buck.
- Your goals: Having a rough idea of where you are, and where you want to be when the project is done will go a long way towards finding the right vendor.
Three Things to Kickstart Success
Advice from Account Managers:
- Trust: Both in the process and the vendor that you ultimately select.
- Timelines: Have one. Whether it's a hard deadline for launch or an event that will mark when each phase is complete. Having no deadline or too long of one is just as problematic as too short of one!
- Budget: Understand the difference between cost and value, and make sure that you leave room in your budget for contingencies.
Three Ways You Can Help Keep a Project on Track
Advice from Project Managers:
- Communicate. Your company has power and influence over how long the project will take. Figure out internally how much time you have available and who will lead the project on your end. Throughout the process, that person will need to participate in regular meetings and site reviews, give feedback, make decisions, and so much more.
- Follow the process: Use the project management or communication tools mutually agreed to at the beginning.
- Consolidate feedback: Delays and miscommunication will happen if the web partner project manager receives conflicting feedback, requests, or information from multiple members of your project team.
Three Ways to Ensure the Best Final Product
Advice from Drupal developers & technical requirements leads:
- Ask the ‘dumb questions’: A good developer will ask for clarification of your requirements, especially functional and UI ones, as well as third-party APIs and dependencies with other systems. If something doesn't make sense to you, ask for clarification!
- Don’t make assumptions: Don’t assume that request A will also give you B as a result. For example, if you ask for a form that collects data but you also expect it to search, sort and export that data, you’ll have to articulate that expectation. Technology can sometimes seem like magic that can do “everything” but that is only because some people thought of “everything” and then made it happen.
- Show and tell: Bring examples of what you want/like and what you don’t want/like. Visual examples aid the conversation for both creative and functional development.
In conclusion, your web project will work best, possibly award-winning best, when you have clear goals, commitment to giving clear and focused instructions and feedback, and an overall strong foundation of trust and mutual understanding.