#1. Product Development of Online Software: strategy, research, concept creation, and planning
This 4-hour workshop addresses the entire process necessary for the efficient development of high-quality online software of all kinds: products for sale, applications, tools, and utilities—whether offered on your website, mobile device, or other means.
- A dramatically new way to invent high quality, highly effective online-software
- An entirely new perspective on the whole process of developing web applications
- How to find out what users really need—not just what market research shows
- The underlying principles that govern marketability and sellability
Who The Workshop Is For
The workshop provides knowledge and skills useful for online-product-development work usually performed by
- Executives & managers of online-product initiatives or websites
- Product managers
It is also highly relevant for eCommerce/website managers, project managers, business analysts, information architects, and UI designers, who are interested in moving into or doing more of such work, perhaps as part of their professional development.
Common Problems Encountered in Developing Online Software
- Products that do not produce satisfactory direct and indirect benefits for their company
- Unpredictable and/or excessive development costs
- Unpredictable and/or blown schedules
- Ineffective product-roadmaps that serve little useful guidance-function
- Failure to identify all the potential users of the product
- Lack of clarity about what users want that the product can satisfy
- Wasted opportunities to get product features right the first time around
- UI and usability problems
- Dissatisfied users
- Being blind-sided by the competition.
- Merely copying your competitors, instead of being truly creative
- Designs that do not take sufficient advantage of RIA, mobile, or social networking
- Designs that cannot be implemented and get sent back for rework
- Ineffective collaboration among planning, design, and development teams
- Conflicts about strategic product-development decisions
- Premature design decisions
Contents of the Workshop
- Treating software & websites as online products
- Problems with the online-product-development field
- Fundamental maps for product R&D
- Right perspectives for developing online products
- Product-development methodology
- The right methods to research user aims
- The art & science of product conceptualization
- Defining & evaluating marketability & sellability
- Planning product roadmaps
This workshop incudes approximately 60 minutes of practice exerices.
What Can Be Improved: Quality, Efficiency, & Satisfaction
By addressing the common problems listed above, design and development projects will be more efficient and satisfying to team members and stakeholders alike. In addition, the online software produced will be of higher quality. Hence, the top-level results such projects are trying to do well are helpfully organized into three categories: Quality, Efficiency, and Satisfaction.
If you use the knowledge and skills taught in this workshop to do the early stages of strategy, research, product-conceptualization, and decision-making, you will end up with more appropriate, better-defined objectives, concepts, and specifications for your development projects. These in turn, will give your design and development teams (either in-house or outsourced) and their project managers better guidance to do their work effectively. They lay the groundwork, give them the best chance of success, increase the probability that the project will succeed, and make the project go faster and easier.
- Quality of Products
- More suited to users’ purposes
- Easier to use
- More complete
- Fewer bugs, less support
- Easier maintenance
- Efficiency of Design & Development Projects
- Shorter product-development time
- Lower cost to produce
- Fewer resources required to develop
- Less rework
- Satisfaction of Stakeholders and Team Members
- Meets the objectives of the company more effectively
- Helps users achieve their true aims better than alternatives
- More satisfying for designers and developers
Benefits to Your Company of Better Software & More Effective Projects
- Higher ROI from its online-product development efforts
- Increased sales of its online products, because of higher quality & more satisfied users
- Company able to compete more successfully, now and in the future
- Get to market quicker
- Decreased marketing, sales, and support costs
- Lower turnover, as a result of more satisfied product-development teams
- Group-facilitated definition of User Categories and Aims of an imaginary online-product of their choosing
- Group-facilitated conceptualization of high-level concepts
Alternatives to this Workshop
Unfortunately, most of the models, methods, and tools in the areas of product development, business analysis, and user experience are merely a collection of ad hoc ideas and approaches. Second, many of these ideas arose from analogies with machines, while others were borrowed from engineering, industrial design, psychology, ethnography, and sociology, even though these analogies and fields are wholly unsuitable for understanding and developing software—something whose essence is information and whose primary use is communicative. In addition, because—despite their names—these ideas and approaches are almost devoid of real business context and orientation, the results they produce often fall short from a business standpoint.
For these reasons, few opportunities exist—books, courses, seminars, workshops, degree programs—for professionals and managers in these areas to learn sound models, methods, and tools that will enable them to improve their skills and achieve superior results.
This workshop is taught by Dennis Emberling and Simon Hill, award-winning pioneers in the fields of online product-development and management, with decades of experience as industry practitioners and teachers.
Simon is an award-winning digital strategy, innovation, design, and product-management professional for 12+ years, on over 85 projects. He has been instrumental in the planning, design, and launch of over 45 successful new websites, new online products, SaaS, software applications, and mobile applications, for Fortune 500 clients and start ups, serving millions of users.
Simon is expert in all of the major disciplines that form software-product development: business and product strategy, brand strategy, research, concept innovation, business analysis, UI design, and project management. He is a seasoned leader of strategy and product-development departments.
- Managed dozens of projects, with budgets ranging from a few hundred thousand to millions of dollars.
- Directly saved companies millions in product development and operational costs.
- Built product-development organizations from scratch many times.
- Often brought in to troubleshoot; rescued a half-dozen major projects from failure.
- Accelerated time lines by 30%-50%
- Generated hundreds of millions in revenues for clients and employers from his planning, design, and delivery of online-software products.
Denny has been a highly innovative management and organizational consultant and coach for thirty years. He has made major contributions to such disciplines as General Systems Theory, Information Theory, Communication Theory, Hierarchy Theory, Developmental-Stage Theory, and the management and organizational sciences.
He has developed a large range of innovative maps, models, methods, and tools widely used by practitioners in these fields around the world, including management-consulting firms, Fortune 100 companies, and the United Nations. He has conducted many workshops and seminars covering eighty-five topics in all these fields. As a practicing consultant and coach, he has achieved outstanding results for companies large and small. He is the founder and president of Developmental Consulting, Inc.