What are your payment terms?
We require a 50% deposit before the commencement of each Sprint and the balance on completion thereof (after UAT “User Acceptance Testing” is signed off).
Please note that a project will not be scheduled until the deposit has been paid and the software development contract signed off with all relevant information supplied.
What if we have our own designer?
Should there be a requirement to work with a designer or design team chosen by you and not by White Wall Web, certain conditions would need to be met for the project to be successfully managed. The designer would need to:
- Present the final design cut-up in the respective HTML page elements.
- Provide the graphics in a suitably small (in terms of file size) format.
- Provide the page styling using a CSS style sheet.
- Layout would need to be achieved using pure CSS elements and not tables.
Any problems in providing these elements or fulfilling these conditions would cause delays in the project and potentially have cost implications.
What role do we play? Who’s responsible for what?
In order for an Agile Project to succeed, we need to form one Project Team for the duration of the project which includes members of both your company and White Wall Web. We will need you to nominate a “Project Sponsor” from your company who must commit to being available to assist with answering questions and working through solutions full time during the course of the project.
This person will need to have both the business knowledge to answer questions and the authority to make decisions on behalf of your company (without needing to escalate the decision).
This person will also be required to perform “User Acceptance Testing” and sign off the completion of each feature.
Best practice Agile development strongly endorses co-locating the development team and the Project Sponsor. This ensures that adequate communication happens amongst the team. If this will not be possible, we will mitigate the risk by ensuring regular communication (daily updates) via email, telephone and video conference.
By signing the agreement, you commit to nominating a Project Sponsor and to making them available full-time to the Project and giving them the responsibility and authority to make decisions on behalf of your organization.
How do we communicate during the project?
White Wall Web uses a number of collaboration tools for communication during the interaction with you during the project and we therefore require you to have access to the internet and email for collaboration.
Our day-to-day internet-based tools are PivotalTracker and Basecamp. Your assigned project manager will explain these tools to you at the project kickoff meeting.
For document revision we require that clients can read and write the standard file formats of the Microsoft Office Suite (2007) of Applications:
- Word – *.doc & *.docx
- Excel – *.xls and *.xlsx
- Powerpoint – *.ppt & *.pptx
Converting documents between varying formats can destroy important formatting which could potentially cause important information to be misunderstood or at worst, deleted entirely.
White Wall Web uses Microsoft Word’s built-in document tracking functionality to quickly and easily see changes and comments to a document. Without this ability, the time taken to review documents can be significantly lengthened and could cause project delays and additional costs.
All final document deliverables will be provided in PDF format.
Will our application be secure?
White Wall Web ensures that all custom-built systems are secured to the highest industry standards. This covers the code, database and infrastructure security.
Should this project involve integration with existing 3rd party tools or systems, the security of the custom-built solution being proposed is only as good as the security of the others systems and the security put in place at the point of integration of the various systems. Should any vulnerability be found in one of the 3rd party systems which has a potential impact on the system, White Wall Web will provide the client with the necessary options to fix this vulnerability and/or minimize the impact on the system.
A few points about this security upgrade:
It is performed as a time-based task, and will necessarily attract costs which the client is obliged to accommodate. If a Retainer SLA is in place, White Wall Web has the right to decide (with input from the client) whether to bill it against the retainer.
This upgrade is particularly important when the client site is resident on a shared host. In this case, any vulnerability has the potential to impact all other hosted sites, and should be mitigated as urgently as possible.
White Wall Web reserves the right to immediately, and without prior notice, temporarily shut down an unsecured client website on a server that we manage if a crucial or urgent security update is prevented by the client in any way
White Wall Web will strive to do everything in its power to minimise this downtime so as not to affect your service to your clients.
How should I budget for this?
There are two ways to budget:
Either a budget is provided by the client and we work to deliver the best results that budget allows for, or
We work with you to produce a comprehensive product backlog upfront and estimate (with some contingency) how long (number of and type of Sprints) it will take to deliver that result.
Although it is better (best Agile practice) and cheaper (less planning and contract agreement expenses) to budget according to option 1, we understand that you may not be familiar with us, and that you may want to compare a quote against another potential vendor’s quotes.
In order to produce a budget for option 2, White Wall Web has developed a service that we call “Sprint Zero” or Consulting phase (see more below). At the end of Sprint Zero we are able to provide a fairly accurate estimate for what will be required in terms of time and budget.
We can estimate without doing Sprint Zero, but the estimate will be a range (from quite optimistic to very pessimistic), because we are unaware of what your requirements may be. The range between low and high may vary considerably and this is thus seldom useful for our clients budgeting purposes.
What’s the best tech for our app?
White Wall Web uses a number of different technologies in our day-to-day development, so we choose the best technology for the required solution. Factors that guide our decisions are:
- Ease of use.
- Speed of development.
- Code maintainability.
- Penetration in the market.
Will we be locked into White Wall Web forever?
We always favour code that is structured in the Model-View-Controller idiom, an advanced and mature Object Orientated Programming technique practiced by most experienced and established developers and development houses.
In addition to this, Code Commenting is standard practice at White Wall Web, ensuring that the code is easy to maintain and easy to learn.
How do you ensure it works like we want it to?
When we work on your application, we ensure that we test it thoroughly and often. We utilise Behaviour Driven Development (BDD) techniques which ensure that the code has automated test coverage. We utilise continuous integration techniques to ensure that the code base retains integrity even when multiple developers are working on it concurrently.
Developing the BDD test for a particular piece of functionality ensures that the developers clearly understand what functionality needs to be developed before they do any coding. When the code has passed these tests, the requirements have been successfully met.
In addition to this, our Quality Assurance department perform functional and usability testing on all software and systems and it must pass their strict criteria before the client is asked to perform testing.
User Acceptance Testing (UAT)
User Acceptance Testing is performed during the development of the system as well as a complete system testing at the end of the development cycle. These tests are based on User Stories developed during the initial stage of the project. Successful completion of these tests will mean that all functionality required by the client has been delivered.
What about cross-browser compatibility?
Cross-browser compatibility is always a laborious job for a developer, which is why we always establish our target market first. This ensures that the application or system works as expected when viewed by the target market. If the application is written specifically for internal use at a company that only uses Internet Explorer 6, then we won’t utilise additional project time or budget writing and testing on any other browser. However, the system being quoted for here has the general public as its target market, meaning that we would need to cater for the most used browsers. When this is the case, we usually cater for the following browsers:
- Internet Explorer 7 and up on PC
- Firefox 3 and up and Mac
- Safari on Mac
If there is a specific request for another browser to be catered for, we can include it, but it can have an impact on the development time, the testing duration as well as bug fixing.
I want the app to be easy to use. How can you ensure that?
Usability is key to the success of any software application. White Wall Web has done extensive research into usability and, in addition to the in-house usability testing, we can put together focus group usability tests should this be requested. The costs and details thereof can be given upon request.
Can you make my site to appear first in Google?
Making your site appear first in Google is a multi-pronged approach, reliant on the time, effort and resources that you are willing to dedicate to marketing your site.
White Wall Web ensures that all code written is Search Engine Optimisation ready, by following industry best-practices as well as guidelines laid down by the major internet search engines. This includes correctly formatted URLs, correct use of CSS data to structure data on the page, as well as the use of page meta tagging to provide additional information for the page.
We also understand the importance of an online marketing strategy, but do not offer it as part of our core business offering. Therefore we will work with you and an Online Marketing Strategy Specialist to achieve your desired business results in this regard.