Let’s Talk: Setting a Development Project Up for Success

07-15-20 Katy Bowman

Many factors contribute to a project's success. Follow along as Katy shares how you can set each of these factors up for a project well-done.

Let’s talk about setting a development project up for success. Here at Sparkbox, we know that the success of a project depends on a variety of factors, many of which take place before any code is written. Setting a project up for success involves

  • establishing goals,
  • understanding the scope of the project,
  • teamwork and collaboration,
  • transparency into the project’s progress,
  • and knowing your tools well enough to adapt them to the project’s needs.

In this issue of Let’s talk, our articles take you through what Sparkbox has learned about this process, from Discovery to knowing your build tools.

Articles We’ve Written

How We Do Discovery

Before we begin developing anything, we need to work with our clients to make sure we’re building the right thing. This article walks you through our Discovery process, honed through working with many clients to help them figure out what problems need to be solved and a path forward for making it happen.

A Project Manager’s Best Friend: The Technical Lead

Teamwork and collaboration are two of the most important factors in delivering a successful project. This is especially important when it comes to the team leadership. In this article, published over on the Bureau of Digital, Sparkbox’s Austin Munhoffen discusses the importance of having a strong partnership between a project’s tech lead and its project manager and what it takes to build that relationship.

The Case for Including a Designer from Project Start to Finish

It’s important to also build teamwork and collaboration across all people working on the project, from the project managers to the designers to the developers and to our clients. This article is an example of this, showing the success we’ve found in involving our designers in the project from beginning to end, saving our clients time (and money) and delivering more polished sites.

How and Why we Decomp

Once a site design is complete and approved by the client, it’s time for the developers to begin building the site. But before that can happen, developers often need to complete a decomposition exercise, breaking the design into meaningful chunks of work and developing a deep understanding of the work ahead. This article provides a step-by-step example of the decomp process from a recent apprentice project and discusses why this process is so important.

Traits of a Successful Build and Deployment Pipeline

Once the development work starts, we work to be as transparent as possible with our clients. We want them to be able to see the site progress and provide input as we move forward. This is why one of the first things we do is set up a build and deployment pipeline. This way, as the site is built out, we can keep everyone on the team collaborating and engaged. This article describes how to set up a build and deployment pipeline and explains some of the thinking behind making the different decisions that are necessary to make the build and deployment pipeline work for your project.

Webpack, But Really

This last article is an example of the kind of deep dive learning that is so important for understanding the tools you are using. Knowledge like this is shared all over the web (including on our very own Foundry—be sure to check out the rest of our build tools articles). And it is definitely worth spending some time learning more about how you can make the tools you use work better and more efficiently for you and your projects.