Technical Project Discovery is a Non-Negotiable Item
One of the first questions asked by many potential Pleiades Services clients is, “I know what I want, can’t we just skip this whole Discovery stuff and just give me a quote?”
Let me explain why the answer is always “No.”
1. Without a full and accurate Statement of Work (SOW) for the project, no web developer can scrupulously produce a reliable project estimate for either the cost or time required. “The Unexpected” is not a good thing in web development — unexpected costs time and money, or can cause client disappointment.
Discovery, careful planning, and good communication delivers web projects on time, in the budget and meets the client expectations.
2.Our years of experience, both as award-winning business consultants, and Certified Process Analysts add value that can positively impact the planning stages of your website project. We help you build a successful online project that meets your goals and delights your both your team and your customers.
3. One of my Quality Systems mentors once said, “The illusion of communication, is that it actually happened. Without a clear, mutually agreed upon vocabulary, you can’t guarantee that all the team members really understand what they just agreed to.” Over the years, we at Pleiades Services have come up with a name for that type of communication — “The Miracle Occurs Here [ … ] Conversation.”
4. In our experience, our customers may have a sense of what they want, but they’re not really sure how to clearly articulate, let alone reach, all their business goals for their web project. Working together, using the technical discovery process, we can identify and prioritize project goals like increasing revenue through sales, expanding membership, lead generation, creating efficiencies, customer service or internal support improvements. Our team works with yours to include the agreed upon, prioritized goals into the project plan. This makes the execution of the project easier. Team members become intimately familiar with the business goals, and when expectations are clear on both sides, implementation is less stressful for everyone.
5. Technical Discovery is a crucial step in building a reliable Statement of Work, developing a reasonable timeline, determine a content strategy that meets the stated goals, and identifying how your customers will intact and use the site. You, or your organization, made the choice to hire an experienced, web development team. You need a professional recommendation concerning a significant investment that will represent your organization online. Pleiades Services is vested in your business success and insists on a project Discovery before we can give a quote, a requirements set or commit to a project timeline.
What is the “Product” of Our Discovery Session
The Discovery deliverable is a technical brief — a visual mind map of all the project’s goals and a plan for achieving them. This project blueprint is the working document extrapolated from the client questionnaire, our initial meetings, Discovery interviews, team discussions, and site content strategy sessions. The Technical Brief outlines the project’s strategic roadmap, how users will interact with the site content, analytical data collected, a site map, a prototyped web design and a proposed production plan to achieve your goals. The Technical Brief informs and guides our work throughout the project. Pleiades Services uses this agreed-upon plan (Statement of Work) to structure our proposal, which will include a technical specification, timeline, and pricing.
The Pleiades Discovery Sessions are comparable to consulting with an architect to draw up the design/construction plans for a building. With those plans and project cost in hand, you can make informed decisions on the project. At the end of the Pleiades Discovery Sessions, you own the project’s, Technical Brief. The Pleiades team can execute the plan for you, or you can choose to use the Technical Brief as a bid document to request proposals from other firms. After considering the cost/benefit analysis, your team may decide not to move forward on the project at this time. The goal of the Discovery session and the Technical Brief is to give you clear, accurate, information on which to make a sound business decision based on facts, not feelings.
Business Process Discovery Session Cost
Project Discovery Sessions with a complete management brief typically range from $2000 to $8000 – travel and lodging, if necessary, will be billed separately.
Here’s the best part — if in the end, you choose to have us execute the project for you, this discovery fee will be applied to the balance of the project.