One of the many problems customers experience with software agencies is unclear communication. The following article presents 5 tips. They summarize internal research about how to improve the workflow. The recommendations are both for clients and software agencies.
- Clients: You should have a clear idea of what you want to achieve with the desired product and communicate it . Not only the features but also the expectations you have for the feel of the product.
- Companies: You should listen carefully to what the client is telling you. Try to build a product that would meet these expectations. Not yours. Communicate what you can deliver and what you cannot. If there is a strict process or methodology you follow (the ‘how’) such as the Scrum methodology, you should also discuss it.
Insights: Any undiscussed matters should be asked and opened if the parties wish to avoid surprises later.
- Clients: You should expect different price ranges from the different agencies as the delivery characteristics differ largely.
- Companies: You should not overcharge clients. Value your time and effort but also be respectful and reasonable when creating the quotes.
Insights: Financials should be discussed in the beginning and not changed majorly without sufficient reason from either party. However, proactive discussions are a good way to compare expectations and keep the goodwill between both parties.<
- Clients: You should define a best case and worst case delivery date. There should be a clear deadline. Discuss what happens if it’s not met.
- Companies: You should show the real forecast and the buffer you expect to use. When forecasts change – the client should know as well.
Insights: (Agile/Waterfall discussion) During the development process both methodologies can follow these recommendations.
- Clients: You should be very fast to communicate any changes in the expectations or the features you desire. Otherwise, the development might be doomed to fail or not launch on time in full. And will probably cost you much more.
- Companies: You should expect that the client might come and try to change something with the product. The world is constantly changing and so are their needs. Therefore, make sure you communicate clear steps, rules, and expectations for when the changes come.
Insights: Some changes might be just tiny adjustments. However, other changes might be major and so the whole development process might be stopped, slowed, or even restructured.
Proficiency (or patience)
- Clients: You should be patient if the company does not fully understand how their industry works. They are not specialists in it.
- Companies: You should understand that even though the digital world is all around us, their clients do not necessarily understand how software development works.
Insights: The client and the company have different specialty fields. Their worlds differ largely from one another.