Seven Peaks Software’s agile software development for long-term business success
Imagine if you could virtually guarantee that your latest digital product struck the ideal balance between business results, user satisfaction, and engineering feasibility. In today’s rapidly evolving markets and fluctuating customer preferences, the art of product discovery has become a quintessential component of a company’s success, as Seven Peaks Software knows all too well.
This article presents the insights of thought leaders Jeremie Tisseau, CEO at Morphosis; Roy Ivar Moe, CTO of Seven Peaks Software; and Chris Regel, Head of Sales at Seven Peaks Software and Morphosis, at the recent Seven Peaks Speaks event, Making Discovery Mandatory.
The panel shared their expertise, insights, and experiences on the vital process of product discovery for an audience of managers and C-level leaders at tech startups, enterprises, and large non-tech enterprises. They also painted a vivid picture of how cultivating a thriving Agile software development method can bring forth a newfound sense of clarity, purpose, and direction for both companies and their clients.
Agile vs. waterfall methodologies
The event started by examining the two primary methodologies that have long dominated the realm of digital product development: agile software development method and the waterfall model. Each presents a unique set of strengths and weaknesses, but the agile model has consistently proven to be more effective in accommodating the ever-changing landscape of product development.
Indeed, the Standish Group Chaos Report (2020) revealed that agile software development yields higher success rates with fewer challenges and failures than its waterfall counterpart. The secret to agile development’s success? It is adaptable to change, manages tasks with ease, and ensures the delivery of value to customers at each step of the process.
The idea that smaller projects tend to yield higher success rates comes as no surprise. As you break a project into smaller, more manageable components, you establish clear milestones and objectives that focus on the client’s business goals. This minimization of risk and shortening of feedback cycles results in a more effective planning and execution process.
Even if your initial minimum viable product (MVP) doesn’t have all the desired features, creating it helps bring the product to market faster. Consequently, you can gather feedback from the real market while continuing to improve your product. This ensures that the product makes a positive impact on the business while also being something that users desire.
Source 2022 Digital Consumer report
Challenges in software development
On the journey of software development, several obstacles can hinder progress. Identifying high-value problems, understanding client needs, scoping the project, and building robust management systems are just a few of the challenges that developers face. However, overcoming these hurdles is critical to delivering value and achieving project success.
Identifying high-value problems
You might argue that the heart of these challenges lies in the art of defining the problem statement. A problem statement serves as the compass that guides the direction of a project. If the compass is faulty, so too is the trajectory of the project.
The challenge lies in delving deep into the heart of the problem, understanding its root cause, and aligning it with the company’s business objectives. It is here that design thinking emerges as a powerful ally, enabling teams to minimize failures and go in the right direction before committing to production.
Indeed, design thinking, a problem-solving approach that puts stakeholder needs and experiences at the center of the design process, is the most effective method of empathizing with user needs and developing innovative, practical solutions in a condensed time frame.
Challenges of talking with clients
Mastering the art of client communication is also key to the success of a project. Establishing a shared understanding of project objectives and desired outcomes is crucial for measuring success. Various techniques and frameworks can be employed during the discovery phase to help clients articulate their goals and refine their ideas. Above all, the focus should remain on delivering business value while minimizing assumptions and biases.
Scoping the project
As you venture deeper into product development, you’ll need to better understand your end users. Research, direct communication, and surveys can provide invaluable insights into user preferences and pain points, which in turn can enhance a product’s design and functionality. This deep understanding of your target audience not only reduces time to market but also enables clients to reach their goals more efficiently.
Building stronger management systems
To improve workflow efficiency, you must also refine your internal management systems. By focusing on factors such as attention, growth, adoption, learning, and integration, businesses can create a more streamlined and effective product development process.
Six tips for successful software development
Drawing inspiration from the points made by each of the speakers, here are six key principles that serve as the pillars of successful software development:
- Perfecting the product life cycle:A clear vision and direction for the project, rooted in the client’s needs, is of utmost importance. By consistently delivering business value and minimizing risks, companies can expand their offerings and provide exceptional value to both users and clients.
- Finding the right products:An ongoing commitment to refining and developing products is essential for optimizing quality, productivity, and efficiency. Employing testing, research, and data analysis techniques will reveal user preferences, ensuring the delivery of products that cater to their needs.
- Building trust:Trust serves as the bedrock of any successful business relationship. By understanding and prioritizing clients’ needs, companies can validate their decisions at each stage of the product development process, fostering a strong foundation for collaboration.
- Identifying better solutions:Establishing clear business objectives allows teams to gather ideas, concepts, and knowledge that drive them closer to their goals. Conducting research and collaborating with marketing teams helps unearth customer pain points, paving the way for more effective solutions.
- Discovering opportunities:Aligning team members from different departments with common goals and objectives can enhance an organization’s efficiency and effectiveness. Understanding stakeholders’ needs and priorities from the onset is vital for creating valuable products that cater to diverse roles and departments.
- Validating design solutions:Prototyping and testing solutions offer a glimpse into the product’s basic concept, ensuring that it meets users’ needs. Continually refining and developing the product based on feedback and market response helps guide teams in the right direction while minimizing risks.
Three elements of success
As mentioned above, Seven Peaks Software navigates the terrain of digital product development with a focus on three principles: viability, desirability, and feasibility. Mastering the interplay between business acumen, user experience, and engineering expertise is crucial for crafting impactful products that resonate with consumers.
Delivering business value is akin to solving a complex puzzle. Each piece represents a specific business role that, when assembled correctly, reveals the greater picture. Clients can monetize this value and reduce costs, creating a solid foundation for their ventures.
Seven Peaks Software employs targeted solutions to address the unique challenges and needs of users. By enhancing processes and workflows, the company ensures that users find joy in interacting with their clients’ products, fostering a deep connection with the brand.
At the core of this approach is a commitment to increasing business value through the judicious application of technology and architecture. Building something that not only makes sense but also adheres to best practices is essential for delivering high-quality products to customers.
This interplay of viability, desirability, and feasibility leads to success, both in terms of delighting customers and meeting business goals.
The growth of e-commerce industry in Southeast Asia is rapidly evolving, driven by a rise in digital consumers and the adoption of digital services. Furthermore, the pandemic accelerated the pace of change, with new sales channels such as live shopping and social media commerce emerging at an unprecedented speed.
To thrive in this market, businesses need to address challenges such as performance optimization, compressed workflow, connected systems, and team collaboration. They can also leverage opportunities such as reducing cart abandonment and embracing composable architecture.
With the right strategy in place, businesses can create personalized, convenient, and locally relevant shopping experiences that meet the evolving needs of digital consumers in Southeast Asia.
Contact Seven Peaks Software now if you’d like to work together on future-focused ecommerce solutions in Southeast Asia.