No matter how much Bill Gates may claim otherwise, he missed the Internet, like a barreling freight train that he didn’t hear or see coming – Jim Clark, co-founder of Netscape
1. Exploration Phase
The objective of the exploration phase is to conduct a strategic visioning session with the clients executive team to identify potential opportunities where the client may use the Internet solutions for business benefit.
The exploration also begins the requirements as well as a benchmark to evaluate the effectiveness and success of the Internet solution. The key deliverable of this phase is a road map to implement and promote the Internet solution.
In the Exploration phase, SolindoWeb develops the digital blueprint for the project. Working from the goals and objectives solidified in Business Strategy, the Exploration phase enables SolindoWeb to assess the overall structure and content of the proposed site and maintain of the proposed site and make technical and design recommendations based on our findings. SolindoWeb works hand-in-hand with the Client to address the companys objectives in a manner that is strategically and technically sound, while providing an intuitive and immersive user experience. User Goals and Personae Descriptions are developed as the foundation to user-centric design. A Feature Value Analysis is used to define proposed elements for the application and to prioritize those elements based on user goals. Then the level of effort and difficulty of execution is determined and the risks are analyzed. This provides a matrix that allows the SolindoWeb team to work with its Client to determine the most efficient palette of potential features.
The SolindoWeb team takes stock of all pre-existing technical and creative materials through a series of audits. Broad technology and creative approaches are proposed including technology infrastructure, site organization, and design concepts. The Exploration phase culminates in the delivery of a detailed Project Plan for the initial phase of the proposed project and well as a definition of future project phases.
The goal of the Business Strategy phase is to make key determinations about the business, the market, and the online landscape to begin an Exploration tailored to the specific project at hand.
Every project requires a different level of business assessment. For some clients, a competitive analysis is sufficient to identify market opportunities and segue into a solid Exploration phase of requirements gathering and planning. For other clients, we use the Business Strategy phase to develop a thorough analysis of strategy, go-to-market issues, client issues, and even the business case itself. Some of the consulting work that we do during Business Strategy includes an initial information audit of the corporate framework, stakeholder interviews, and evaluation of trends and drivers.
2. Identification Phase
The objective of this phase is to rapidly construct a proof-of-concept prototype of the proposed Internet solution. In addition to initiating the design process, this phase is intended to built support from the various corporate constituencies and stakeholders as well as build momentum across the client organization.
Crystallizes the findings uncovered in Exploration. Concepts and strategies are realized through the creation of content maps, project specifications, imagery, and prototypes, providing the foundation for the building and development phase of the project (Creation). Two critical paths are charted for the Prototype phase: (1) information architecture and design and (2) technology. Both of these paths are closely linked paths are closely linked to the functionality and practical usability of the site.
Our team map out every aspect of the proposed site. By synthesizing data from use-case scenarios, navigation requirements, SolindoWeb's User Experience team defines the information architecture of the site. Page layouts are represented using wire frames and mock-up techniques. In-lab usability testing is conducted to collect input from actual client end-users. Graphic elements, color schemes, and general Look and Feel standards are created and submitted for Client approval.
The Technical team creates a series of small-scale proof of concept prototypes to test coding for high-risk site interactions. Network and database architectures are finalized and third-party applications, necessary to provide site functionality are selected and inspected to determine whether customization is necessary. Team members compile a comprehensive list of technical resources (third-party software, middleware, and hardware) as a bill of materials to accompany the blueprints.
The net result of the Prototyping phase is a detailed set of specifications regarding the visual and technical aspects of the site from which the final product can be built, a list of necessary materials to build the product, and a schedule for the subsequent phase, Creation.
3. Creation Phase
The objective of this phase is to design, build, test and implement the Internet solution. The project team uses an iterative refinement approach to design and build the solution. The project team works very closely with the client executive sponsor and solicits continuous feedback from the various stakeholders.
The detailed specifications established in the Prototyping phase are used to guide the actual build-out and rigorous testing of the Client's application, resulting in a finished product ready for testing and launch. While much of the work done during the Creation phase involves the often-complex construction of the site, it remains a collaborative process. The Client previews the site as it proceeds through its various stages of construction, allowing for consistent feedback and refinement.
The User Experience team builds the graphic look of every page of the site. They code each page so that it displays properly online and can be integrated with the functional elements of the site. The Technical team works to produce the "back end," the original coding, and third-party software customization that will provide the transactional capabilities for all application features, as well as the network and database infrastructure to support these applications.
In addition to continuous code testing performed by the development team, our Quality Assurance staff performs rigorous testing to ensure that all site functions operate as defined in the specifications. The final deliverable of the Creation phase is a fully functional product ready for Transfer to the Client's data center or to SolindoWeb's secure hosting facility.
During the Transfer phase, the SolindoWeb team shoulders this responsibility, ensuring that the Clientsstaff is educated in the operation of its new application. SolindoWeb provides training in the use of the Client new site and delivers literature detailing the site's systems. SolindoWeb works with the Client to develop procedures to deal with any changes in technology, system problems, and desired enhancements.
The site is officially launched and transferred from its development environment to its production hosting facility, where it will be available to the target users. Various steps are taken to ensure that all components, including databases, are operational and that the site is properly integrated into the hosting environment. Furthermore, all documentation is finalized and a design standards guideline is created.
Processes and systems are established to measure and analyze ongoing health of the system, site traffic levels and user experience feedback. This ongoing knowledge provides the critical link to make future refinements and enhancements to be addressed in the Evolution phase.
4. Evolution Phase
The objective of this phase is to implement the Internet solution and monitor the performance and effectiveness of the solution in the context of the business case and specific target market metrics. The information collected during the evolution phase provides valuable feedback for the next iteration of the Internet solution and provides a mechanism to measure the overall effectiveness of the solution. In addition, many of the assumptions made during the exploration phase in terms of the new digital business model and targeted market segments are either validated or calibrated.
One of the most common errors to occur in Web based development is the lack of proper planning for future application Evolution. In today's work characterized by rapidly advancing technology, global competition and high customer expectations, ongoing measurement and refinement is critical to ensuring the future relevancy of your application.
Thus, in the Evolution phase two activities generally occur. First, SolindoWeb will begin planning the next phase of development if so identified in the original project Exploration. Second SolindoWeb will establish ongoing processes to measure and evaluate site performance and user feedback to provide data. Recommendations are made for future application enhancements and the launches a new Exploration process to begin the concrete planning and designed required to execute the recommended enhancements.