01 // Product Discovery

Resolving Uncertainty

Custom software is possibility. Determining what to build (and what not to build) makes or breaks the final delivery.

What We Do

The Custom Software Path

Idea in hand, Discovery is your trailhead on the path to a finished product. A unique platform means that you’ll need a unique blueprint, so this phase grabs from a pool of services (like stakeholder interviews, research, wireframes, prototypes, and documentation) to formalize the plan.

Most projects spend the first 20–25% of their timeline and budget in Discovery. That may sound like a lot, but:

  • It sidesteps the messy uncertainty that comes with custom
  • The effort pays for itself several times over in efficiency and precision later

As this phase wraps up, we’ll help you 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 another vendor.

Nick Walsh moving sticky notes during a software discovery session

Project Planning Meeting

After navigating initial conversations, team meetings, and paperwork, we’ll kick things off with a planning meeting. The focus here is defining success and divvying up work, covering questions like:

  • Key Indicators: What metrics can be tied to project goals?
  • Strengths and Weaknesses: What do you do better than your competitors?
  • History: What’s been tried before?

Software is infinitely complex along infinite routes. We’re looking to pair our experience with your domain knowledge to pick the one with impact and value.


History is the greatest source of overlooked value for software that lasts. How did we get here? What have we tried? Why was this decision made? The past may seem like an odd thing to bring up during Discovery, but effective project documentation is just that: A living source of truth, not a list of requirements tossed over a wall to the developers.

Here, our technical leadership starts the ledger. Objectives, needs, wants, and domain expertise become actionable tasks — and a running log for the history books.

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

Wireframes & Prototypes

Wireframes are also documentation, just visualized. These easy-to-edit, low-fidelity mockups are perfect for demonstrating features and flow before designers and developers do their thing. They’ve routinely been the best way to make sure everyone’s on the same page, so they’re part of every project.

Prototypes are more research-focused and vary project-to-project. If there are any big question marks — a new technology, heavy lifting, novel experiences — we may recommend a limited proof of concept as a way to further remove uncertainty.

Phases & Estimates

We’re pretty good at ballparking an estimate after a chat or two, but pricing is a process — no one can provide precision without a bit of leg work. As the blueprint comes into focus, cost ranges and time estimates will also clear up.

“[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