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Expert Approaches vs. Miscommunication

The modern world is rapidly becoming one where outsourcing is a necessity. Almost everyone is outsourcing software projects to companies that are specialists in software development. That approach brings risks because of the potential for miscommunication. Generally speaking, programmers and business people do not speak the same language. Their respective education is in only one of two different arenas—technology or finance.

An Analyst, or Project Manager (PM) is assigned as the interface between the business/client’s needs and the team of programmers who are physically writing the software. When a misunderstanding takes place, it becomes the responsibility of the Analyst/PM to solve the problem. The problem generally results from one of three possible types of communications failures:

  • The team doesn’t understand the business goal because the Analyst/PM did not understand the needs of the business/client originally.
  • The Analyst/PM is not effectively communicating the needs of the client to the programming team.
  • The team suffers from a communication bottleneck. That is, the Analyst/PM is constantly relying on guidance that is not forthcoming from the business/client in a timely manner.

We have resolved these difficulties in two steps.

The first step is to bring the PM closer to the customer. The common approach to business software development is based on the principle that the Analyst/PM must be absolutely current in both computer technology as well as the fields of investment and business planning. Because of this experience, the Analyst/PM speaks the same language as the business/client, rather than following blind directions for mysterious chunks of code that are personally meaningless.

The second step is to make the team closer to the customer.

The expert’s approach to business software development states that the entire IT team understands the business, the scope of the project, the environment that the project will operate in, and exactly how it will be implemented. Their education is kept current by attending conferences where the state-of-the-art in software is explored, as well as frequent seminars on business and investment strategies in today’s challenging global economy. Without a team that understands these goals and the logic behind the software that they are developing, the result ends up being a multifunctional building, and although it may be functional and solid, it lacks the interface needed by the customer. Instead, by having a team that understands the industry and the full scope of the project, a cohesive and efficient software application can be reliably built.

Kristina Erofeeva

Business Analyst at Devexperts

Kristina Erofeeva

Joined the company in 2011. Graduate of Saint-Petersburg State University of Economics and Finance, Specialist degree with honors. She has strong financial background in securities market, corporate actions, banking and trading on securities and currency markets. Accounting and bookkeeping experience. That’s why she always play on business’ side. Experience of working in accordance with SCRUM methodology, Agile development.
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  1. June 6th, 2012 at 22:23 | #1

    Two great discoveries: project managers and development teams must understand what customers need. Congratulations! )))
    At that level of maturity how can you guys build any financial software at all??

  2. June 7th, 2012 at 18:58 | #2

    David, I agree that it sounds odd that somebody coul build software not underanding client needs, but the idea we came across is something else: if you need to get a treatment on your desease, you go to the doctor, not one of your friends that suffers the same desease.
    Though the friend understand your needs perfectly, only doctor posesses detailed knowledge of what is to be done. The same is here, we have seen that if PMs and team do have more profound knowledge than understandng the needs and glossary, the qualiy increases a lot.

  3. June 23rd, 2012 at 19:29 | #3

    From experience as a lawyer negotiating commercial contracts, your second step really resonates with me. Ultimately it comes down to effective communication – a thorough commercial contract, or at very least, decent heads of terms, in each case backed up by a robust non-disclosure agreement to protect proprietory information, is a sound investment. We find that the real value comes not from the end result, i.e. a signed development agreement, but the process involved in its negotiation, flushing out all of the potential issues at the outset, alongside allowing the parties to really understand what each others drivers are. Thanks Kristina for the post!

  4. thomas
    December 18th, 2012 at 11:42 | #4

    Awesome list!! Well done!!

  5. sandeep
    January 11th, 2013 at 15:51 | #5

    The power of today’s smart phones and computing tablets have created billions of virtual offices, libraries, movie theaters and shopping malls that move where your customers domanacletechnology

  6. sandeep
    January 11th, 2013 at 15:53 | #6

    Manacle Technologies has expertise in iPhone Application Development, iPhone Game Development and Custom Mobile Application Development.manacletechnologies

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