Labcodes workflow and process
The best way to create the right product is to own the process, from beginning to end, in order to fulfill clients’ and users’ expectations.
We've based our method on agile management, design, and development’s best practices, allowing stakeholders always to be up-to-date with everything that's been worked on. It is a cyclical, incremental, and non-linear process. It covers most scenarios but may adapt according to business requirements.
As communication is one of the main cornerstones in our process, a Labcodes partner is assigned as the primary contact point with a team available on Slack (or another tool of choice) during business hours.
On the client’s side, we need someone engaged, empowered to make decisions on their own, available to answer any questions, and capable of planning the next steps. This active participation is crucial in keeping the project healthy and aligned.
Not all ideas go through the whole or same process, and they may adapt according to the product's needs. Besides this flow, we also follow our internal principles and encourage its use for all people involved with the project.
Product, design, and development teams get together to discuss and explore ideas. This step aims to understand the problem and create strategies to deliver the best solution possible.
Through an immersion in the product’s context, we focus on the needs, desires, and limitations of the people who will use it, from concept to delivery. At this stage, we also define what is considered successful for the project and map competitors.
Even in an agile project, before we can start to build, it is necessary to align and define goals, strategies, and scope.
The planning phase aims to promote alignment between the business and technical teams to create an ordered list of user stories and a product launch plan. The goal is to outline a better definition of the product and start building it with a shared understanding between the teams and an effective strategy.
design and full-stack development
We focus on building the product. Both the design and development teams start a cycle to create the best solution possible.
With activities well described and prioritized according to the value it brings the business, designers start prototyping to validate ideas, and the development team will specify, break, and prioritize the features.
The work done by the design team follows its own principles.
Through methods* like desk research, interviews, questionnaires, user journey mapping, etc., we focus on the people who will benefit from the product, from concept to release.
The research will provide the foundation to start generating ideas.
We start by gathering all existing information about the specific part of the software we’re focusing on concentrating efforts on understanding the user’s needs, desires, limitations, and defining metrics to measure this particular flow’s success.*The methods may vary according to business needs and are decided together with stakeholders.
It's time to explore ideas! With a few methods like user flows and wireframes, we can draw up scenarios and corner cases based on the research’s insights and accurate knowledge of whom we are designing for.
Prototyping is a handy way to validate an idea, and it is cheaper and faster than simply implementing it. That’s why, during this phase, we ask team members, being them other designers, developers, or project managers, to collaborate with us. We show them our ideas and ask for feedback to keep improving. We can also include other stakeholders and users at this stage to gather even more feedback.
All the previous work created a solid foundation of what we need to to fulfill the user needs and shape the User Experience. It’s time to focus on the User Interface, defining or applying the visual language for a cohesive match with the brand’s aesthetics, preparing interactions, and assuring that the product is desirable, accessible, and inclusive.
In the end, designers are ready to start a new cycle, and a responsive set of the User Interface is ready for development.
Review, Handoff, Test & Learn
After validation from team members and stakeholders, we review everything to ensure that the next team on the flow, mostly developers, will have everything they need to implement our designs. Then, we keep an eye to check if everything is working as expected, fix possible flaws, and keep improving.
On a brand new project, we often start working in sprints, as in a Scrum-like process, but depending on the product’s maturity, we can switch to a Kanban-like and dynamically create a continuous flow.
After receiving a feature design, the development team will understand what needs to be done and decide on the best approach, splitting the deliverable into the smallest amount of independent work possible to avoid having to wait for the entire feature conclusion to deliver value to the product.
The process results in descriptive tasks, ordered by priority and with understandable goals. Consequently, deliveries become more agile and effective, preventing painful deploys.
Code and Refactoring
We always balance consolidated and up-to-date technologies to develop our products with efficiency and security, performing constant and gradual refactorings to keep a healthy pace and avoid significant changes to pause the development flow.
To ensure we’re not unexpectedly breaking any behaviors, we write tests regularly. If the tests become hard to write, it’s a sign that complexity is increasing, and we need rearrangements.
Once the task is finished and passing all tests, it's time to review. POs and designers can check if the feature matches what was planned and designed for it in a staging environment.
The goal is to that the whole team understands what's been developed and the technologies used in the project. The process provides a fresh view of the work, avoiding that code improvements pass by unnoticed.
When approved, the feature is ready to be delivered to final users, which we do automatically.
When needed, the features are deployed connected to metrics software such as Google Analytics to evaluate its performance with the audience. And so we’re able to start the next iteration.
From shipping, we get attentive to collect feedback from users, assess whether the feature aligns with the product goals, and identify improvement points.
Finally, we repeat both cycles simultaneously for the next features until the whole product is ready.
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