01 // Discover

From Problem to Blueprint

Custom software is defined by possibility. Determining what to build (and what not to build) is the deciding factor behind a successful delivery.

What We Do

Getting Started

Our most impactful work starts at ground level, in the form of a problem statement. Discovery combines process, experience, and planning to map a solution to a web application — all while keeping a firm grasp on budgets and timelines. By the end of this phase, we’ll have a shared vision of the aforementioned what to build paired with how to build it.

Nick Walsh moving sticky notes during a software discovery session

Project Planning Meeting

We kick things off with an onsite meeting to collaboratively hash out objectives, metrics for success, and priorities.

In order to be successful in the balancing act that is software, we’re looking for a peek behind the curtain. What does success look like? What do you do better than your competitors? How could this fail? Ranking and prioritization of needs serves as the basis of high-level decisions throughout the project.

At the same time, we’ll work to cover design and technology preferences, talk through existing standards and restrictions, and detail devices alongside accessibility.

Wireframes & Documentation

Wireframes provide a swift path to visualizing and iterating on ideas alongside stakeholders and potential users. These easy-to-edit, low-fidelity mockups are perfect for demonstrating features and flow before diving into the details.

This phase includes documentation of the specifications and details discussed, generally in wiki form. Paired with wireframes, these two deliverables work together in providing the complete picture (a single source of truth) for everyone moving forward.

A gridded demonstration of wireframe layouts for The Rookies on a pair of monitors
Jennifer Borders and Nathaniel Bibler in a conference room on a client call

Phases & Estimates

We’re pretty good at ballparking an estimate and timeline during initial conversations, but no one can give you precision before some leg work. Missing on cost is a major contributor to the 50% failure rate on new software projects industry-wide (a number we can’t verify anecdotally, fortunately). Collaborative scope and wireframes in hand, we’ll have the blueprint to provide narrower dates and numbers worth standing behind.

From here, you’re free to choose your own adventure: continue using us for implementation (details at Design and Develop), hand these documents off to an internal team, or bring our consultative work to a separate vendor.

“[Envy Labs] challenged us to think differently to build the website that truly fit our vision and in a way so it is scalable for years to come.”

Stefan Woort-Menker
Co-Founder // Moonllight