Not everyone is used to the process required to create a mobile application. So here I detail the process that I follow so we can be on the same page.
When I first get on the phone with people about a mobile app project, one of the first thing that they'll ask is how much will it cost. Unfortunately, creating a cusomt mobile application is a little bit like building a custom house. So after an initial phone call, all I can do is provide a range of cost.
To refine what your project might cost, the first step will be a road mapping exercise. If you decide to work with me I'll send you a quote to do this exercise with you.
A road mapping session allows to:
- Tell me all about your project
- Refine your project
- Translate your vision into an specification
- Create wireframes for your application.
- Create an initial timeline for your application
The road mapping exercise consist of 1/2 a day to a day of meeting (over skype is fine) so we can work together on defining exactly how the application should behave.
After that meeting, I'll work on a spec and wireframe for your application, this usually takes a week to two weeks depending on the project. Once this document is complete, you'll provide me feedback so I can make sure the final application is what you want.
Along with the spec and the wireframes I'll include a proposal to transform your vision into reality.
You can read more about the road mapping process in my blog.
The next step is to work on the application UX design. The road mapping session, got us a high level view of the app, but to get really started, we have to figure out exactly what will be shown to the user, how the user will interact with the app. This is never a do it once and you're done process, see it as a task that needs to start before development starts, but also something that will run along with development.
The majority of the work should be done in this first phase though, but as development progress, the design team needs to stay a couple weeks ahead of the development team ensuring that no code is thrown away because of design change.
So depending on your project, you can expect 1 to 3 weeks of design time.
Then comes the actual implementation work. The implementation will be split in sprints of 1 or 2 weeks depending on the project. Each sprint is like a mini project in which we agree what will be implemented that sprint and has a specific structure.
A sprint will start with a planning meeting in which we pick features/scenario to implement from the top of the priority list. The goal is to pick just enough features to fill the sprint.
To make sure you are aware of what is happening and to answer any last minute implementation question, we'll have daily chat (or at least email update). Those are meant to be under 10 minutes and are not meant for long conversation, just updates.
A sprint ends with a demo meeting in which I'll show you the new functionalities which have been implemented in the app. This is a great opportunity to gather further feedback and to allow you to see your app grow.
On top of those meetings, we'll have a longer term planning meeting in which we review functionality which have not been fully defined or prioritized yet. The goal here is to make sure the design team and you have had a chance to design the app before the development team start implementing it.
While I'll be testing your application throughout the process, I'll ask you to also test your application. Your feedback will be key to the success of the project.
Also, once the project is over, one last testing pass will be done to ensure that everything is working as expected.
Finally to get your application to your users, I'll publish the app on the AppStore and PlayStore.
Any application created will require some maintenance. I usually include a maintainance option in my proposal to ensure that your application keeps working when Apple or Android update their operating system.