There is an unconstructed bridge between the design and development teams which stops them from working together. With the new barrage of technological advancements, it is now becoming imperative for designers and developers to extend a helping hand to each other.
Designers and developers alike are now familiar with the Agile methodology. The question that remains is how do these cross-functional teams work in unison in companies? Read on as we find the answer for this perennial issue faced by all major product companies.
Pattem Digital has formed a borderless team of designers and developers by demarcating roles. Our crew members work towards a single objective of developing products. Imagine a player-coach dynamism of tennis players. The player goes out to execute the game plan whereas the coach chalks out a winning strategy. At Pattem Digtial, our designers take on the mantle of coaches to form match winning strategies. Our developers are the all-important players who execute the master plan in real life.
So, how have we actually managed to do the seemingly impossible task of getting everyone to follow Agile methodologies? We follow a three-pronged approach:
We find the people who fit perfectly in their roles. Here is how attitude shapes a crucial part at Pattem Digital.
Embrace change: We understand that the world around is changing rapidly and part of our specs may become obsolete by the time production is completed. Be are flexible enough to know how to make real-time changes to our products at any part of the production cycle.
Practice what we preach: We don’t dwell on thinking and procrastinating. There are no abstract ideas at Pattem Digital. We do in-depth analysis of concepts to consider a holistic view. We then set about putting our plans into motion.
Don’t get caught in the perfection trap: We understand that perfection is hard to achieve and we try to improve our products with every release cycle.
Users are important: While we work for our clients, we remain a steady advocate for the end users. Our focus is to ensure that the users get a helpful product at the end of it.
Now that we have found the right people with the right mindset, we go about defining our processes.
Meticulous planning: Our designers lead the way with their sprint cycles which is 1-2 cycles ahead of the rest of the company. This way, they have the leeway to research the user behavior and come up with the best solutions. Developers get some head start as to what to expect in the coming sprints.
Interactive prototyping: Despite all the mockups, sketch files and wireframes, we also emphasize on working prototypes. Our clients don’t need to see the mockups when they can interact with the prototype. We work to get a real-life working prototype out there for a real-world feedback for all our efforts.
Validation: We don’t just seek out the clients’ validation but we are pretty fanboys about user validation too. Yes, having the client give their nod is great. But we go one step further and conduct many usability studies. We interview users to get their spontaneous and unbiased feedback on their interaction with the products.
It is now time to practice agile implementation in the design process.
Tools of our trade: We pick the best tools available in the market. Sketch and Invision are the preferred tools for our design team. We also use Flinto and Adobe After Effects as and when we need to.
Cafeteria meets: We huddle for an informal session at the open-seating cafeteria. The casual setting becomes our working environment for the next few hours during which we approach strangers, friends, and colleagues in the office to share their opinion on the app.
We have found the perfect mix of attitude, process, and practice that helps us go Agile. Depending on your team size and company’s philosophy, you can take a varying approach to using these factors to implement Agile in your organisation.