Project Documentation for Building an MVP - Reading Time: 3 Mins

Introduction

With each encounter of startup founders or people who are looking for our technical skills & network to translate their idea into reality. Usually, I would look at what is the groundwork that they had done. Before they had met us like having their own pitch deck or lean canvas or working on it for a year for us to explore ways to build their product or service.

Along with my prior preparation of looking at their Linkedin profile or Facebook to understand their background. So that it makes it easier for me to craft my message to get the point across without being too technical in nature. Which apparently is one of my bad habits when I am not talking to a non-technical person while I was in sales.

Lean Canvas

Having your own lean canvas or pitch deck allows you to show a rough idea of what is your startup about to the software developer or software development. They won't assume that you know about the technical details of your project but enough to give them a rough idea of what you are trying to accomplish.

Lean canvas makes communication much easier for them to grasp what you are trying to do. So to provide you with the best suggestion or advice. Through the quick introduction of the lean canvas. It gives us a rundown on how we can think of a way to build your product or service on what is technically possible. Especially if you do not have a project specification with a focus on building a prototype that addresses your pain point in your product or service.

Design & Technical Documentation

Creating design documentation like a wireframe helps the developer or software development firms to understand what does it look like. Which reduce the amount of time needed to build your product or service. Which directly reduces in cost & duration in producing the MVP for you.

If you are not armed with a wireframe, This will be discussed and included as part of the project specification on what needs to be built.

Ideally, you should spend some time to do it yourself like wireframe & design style guide. This does not require much technical or design skills as you focus on building the user flow/user journey. We help by asking you questions and translate it into a product or service using our software development skills.

Project Management

There are different ways to manage software development in the project management perspective. We have different practices, waterfall is considered the industry practice taught in various educational institutions.

If they say that the following project management methodology like Kanban or Scrum project management. They are following what we call agile practices that are drawn from lean manufacturing that was popularised by Toyota. This basically means they have a short project duration say 3 mths or less depending on your MVP's project specification.

Do note that for software projects, do not look at just the price of the project. Which is the total project value to built it, but you should consider the cost of the project, not just the price of the project value. Which should not run over USD$ 10,000 as an MVP.

Select a software developer or software development in the following criteria:

  1. Cost of Development - The actual cost of the MVP
  2. Cost Mantaince or Support - It is around 10% - 20% of the total project value spread across 12 months.
  3. Documentation & User manual - Ease of support & maintenance when you have another developer or software firm who takes over.
  4. Communication - Are they tactful and is here to help you?

Conclusion

I really hope that you can use my advice to reduce the time and effort in building your MVP. When you translate your idea into a lean canvas and build MVPs to test the assumptions/hypothesis. That result in you showing it to potential investors when you gain more users & traction to use your product or services.

Reference