In today's tight economic climate, value for money has become more critical than ever. Both government and private sectors face budget cuts, making every dollar precious. We are seeing many parts of the business competing for the same slice of pie. It’s tough out there. Product leaders, business owners and startups have it hard at the moment. They want to do the right thing, solve problems, build great software for their customers and do it in the best way possible. But financial pressures are very real, so it’s understandable that people are looking at value in software from one dimension - cost.
We believe there’s a way to achieve both value for money and build awesome software that solves real problems.
But first, let’s start with value for money and define what it is…
Understanding value for money
Value for money goes beyond the unit cost of an item or a service, particularly when designing and building awesome software.
Broadly, it consists of a combination of the four E’s: Economy, Efficiency, Effectiveness and Equity.
Here’s a definition of each term in the context of software design and development:
- Economy: This is the combination of initial capital expense and long-term operating costs of the software. A lower initial cost may lead to higher maintenance and support expenses later on. And let’s not forget the whole-of-life cost - as the world advances, so must software via new features and ever evolving browsers and smartphones.
- Efficiency: This is the value of software features you can achieve for the price and how this will be managed during the design and development processes. You will need a flexible process to prioritise features that provide the most value to your customer and business. Oftentimes it can be hard to know what you are asking for, and feature detail is only revealed when you get into the detailed design and development.
- Effectiveness: This is making sure the software delivers the expected results and aligns with its intended purpose. This is something that needs to be managed throughout the software design and build process.
- Equity: This is making your software accessible to everyone equally. In software design, this can include ensuring accessibility and international standards are met so you can reach the widest audience and provide alternative ways of using your software.
The four E's highlight the non-financial dimensions of software development that impact the final outcome.
Manage value and build great software
So, let’s get into it! How should you choose the right development partner, and what measures must you put in place to get the best outcome from your budget, time and resources?
Align on value and success criteria - It is essential to get on the same page with your software partner regarding what value and success mean to you. This sets the foundations for the scope of work for your project; they can drive timeframes, key features and quality metrics. It also helps to establish parameters for the project, which can continuously be evaluated and adjusted as the project progresses.
Consider Agile methodology - Agile delivery focuses on delivering value early on in a project by incrementally delivering the highest priority features and functionality first - getting to market sooner, allowing you to see a rapid return on your investment. Continuous Agile delivery also enables transparent and progressive project reporting, meaning that you have full visibility of project performance at any stage throughout the project.
Choose an experienced partner - Find an experienced software partner to avoid low-quality work, as sub-par design and development can impact whole-of-life costs, with larger maintenance and support bills and costly quotes for adding new features. This also includes ensuring new software is accessible - in Australia; several laws regulate website accessibility.
Delivering value through experience, expertise and collaboration
At Airteam, we have a track record of delivering value through considered human-centred design methods, modern development practices and quality delivery processes. We excel at this because of the experts on our team - all adept and well-versed at what they do - and are known for being highly collaborative. It requires continuous effort and expertise to ensure value for money when designing and building software, and one that doesn’t stop after the sales pitch.
We partner closely with all our clients to manage value through our processes and strong communication rituals. This involves collaboratively prioritising high-value features, understanding your end-user needs, designing software that can scale, and using the right tech to future-proof and meet your evolving business needs.
In one of our recent case studies, we assisted a start-up company, Ark, to develop a brand-new software solution for the construction industry. Our approach ensured that we delivered a quality digital product aligned with Ark’s vision and goals whilst carefully managing the client's budget as if it were our own.
“Airteam were super time and cost-conscious through their project management expertise. We met every budget expectation and milestone that supported our business startup phase.” - Stuart Suthern-Brunt, Ark
Read the full case study for Ark here.
You can have value for money and achieve great things
Yes, that’s right! You can have value for money + great software. Plus be proud of what you have built and put into the world.
We believe that software can solve complex problems and make people’s lives better. A busy parent booking an emergency dental appointment whilst on the way to work. An architecture fan with low vision browsing a collection of digital artifacts at a state museum. A budding musician is now excited that her class now has music lessons every week at school.
Software can do amazing things - but getting there means more than just looking at the price tag. It’s the journey and who you choose to travel with, plus the plan you make together; that makes the difference. Let’s embrace the adventure together and build things better!
If you'd like to work with us, get in touch and let's talk through what you need and how we can help.