Stepwise has recently participated in a number of business meetings, where our Partners have presented us visions of development of their products. And others have been telling us about the new products that they would like to create and conquer the market with. Despite careful preparation and great ideas, each of these companies had some doubts:
- Has everything been predicted properly?
- Do the proposed functions make sense?
- How will the application/system be perceived by end user?
- In case of Fintech companies, there is also a matter of proper selection of technology and security aspects
The same doubts arise in the case of SaaS platforms, Deep Tech products, and also Fintech companies offering complex systems. There is a risk that is difficult to predict, and the final result may turn out to be insufficient.
What can Stepwise do about it?
In such situations Stepwise proposes a very simple and transparent approach — the MVP Factory concept. After Wikipedia, minimum viable product (MVP) is a product with just enough features to satisfy early customers, and to provide feedback for future product development.
That is the definition of MVP alone. And the MVP Factory is a concept that allows our Customers, depending on their business needs, to apply the following solutions.
How does it work?
In our case, the MVP Factory concept is based on the following two pillars:
- Be Agile for Software development
- Be Lean for Product Development
Stepwise provides the Client with the following:
- Building an interdisciplinary Development Team
- Implementation of appropriate lean processes
- Working environment and infrastructure
- Product launch support
- If need we also offer Tech Support in fundraising
It is independent, cross-functional and scalable. The team usually consists of 3 to 8 persons and covers, depending on Client’s needs:
- UX/UI Designer
- Developers (Backend, Frontend, Mobile)
- Automation Tester
Where appropriate, the team may be supported on full time, or short-term basis by Graphic Designer, DevOps or Marketing/SEO/Growth strategist. We always respond to a particular situation.
To start with the MVP Factory, DEV Team needs only one person from the Client side, that is the Product Owner. In specific cases, the IT company may additionally reserve a technical product recipient.
Product Owner defines Backlog of the product and assigns priorities. At first, the involvement is slightly larger, so that it could decrease over time to just a few hours per sprint. Product Owner can spend the remaining time on business development, product promotion, or coming up with new ideas. Stepwise deals with the all the rest, including progress reports.
In special cases, Stepwise can delegate our Product Owner, that can takes care about the Product set up and act as proxy between Dev team and Business Owners on Client’s side.
Software Development — be Agile
At Stepwise we do not attach ourselves to specific methodology of work. We do however always follow the Agile Manifesto Principles. What does this mean in practice:
- We work in short iterations
- Deliver frequently and small pieces of software
- We automate everything we can (DevOps, Test Automation)
- Continuous Integration & Continuous Deployment
- We follow the Pareto Principle (80/20)
Such approach accelerates the development very much, reduces regression, ensures continuity and reduces the time to market. Whether we use Scrum, Kanban, or XP, we always provide the above indicated elements of the process.
Product Development — be Lean
As for the product approach, crucial is Lean model cooperation of the entire team. The development team works with the Product Owner in the following loops:
- It may come from the Product owner (feature, concept)
- It may also come from the Development Team (technology, concept)
- Build & Code:
- Work performed by the Development Team
- Agile approach: short iterations, frequent deliveries
- Measure the Data:
- End-User that may be the Product Owner, Marketer, Sales Specialist, or actual End-User of the application
- The process of measuring and collecting data is supported by the development team
- We learn together, Product Owner with the Development Team
- Quick decision after result analysis: GO or NO GO
The most important thing in the entire Lean cycle is that the idea that is misplaced or unnecessary from the end user’s point of view fails as soon as possible and gives rise to a new, better-thought-out and error-proven final idea.
How does the Customer benefit from MVP Factory?
- Time to Market reduction
- Obtaining a competitive edge
- Quick learning process
- Responding to concept changes (on the fly)
In brief, instead of waiting 6–12 months just to discover that the product idea or the chosen technology has not worked out, the Customer has quick feedback, usually after one, or a maximum of two sprints (1–4 weeks). And the final result may surprise even the very originator of the idea.
In addition, the MVP Factory concept helps our customers to respond quickly to market needs, End-User, and test various technological solutions.
Feel free to contact us and talk about details.