Requirements of the IT Project You Have to Remember About

2020-09-24 | Robert Bojek | it project requirements it project risks software house contracts

How many times has it happened that the final product does not meet your expectations because you forgot about some requirements or took them as so obvious? What should you pay attention to before starting cooperation with a software house? Check in our new blog post!

Requirements of the IT project that you must remember before you sign a contract with the software house

When establishing cooperation with software house it is worthwhile to carefully analyze the agreement and its arrangements. It may happen that the components of the final product do not completely match your requirements or expectations. This is usually due to the omission of issues that seem obvious or that have not been specifically specified. How to avoid pitfalls and differences in expectations? What to pay attention to? What elements should be asked to avoid misunderstandings and unnecessary stress at the end of the project?

Who will write the micro-copy?

When submitting a request for a project, we expect to receive a ready to use version. However, it is not always on the designer's side to fill a website or mobile application with content. It happens that the programmer will write a sample copy or popular in this case "lorem ipsum" in the places of text. If we don't take this into account, it may turn out that these real copy plugs will be caught by the final user. It is worth asking whether the copy service is included in the project price or on your side. It's best to work with a professional copywriter who knows the language of benefits, SEO optimization and has experience in creating content for websites or applications.

Do you have a hosting and domain name for your project?

Not every software house offers a domain and hosting as part of project preparation. Usually it is up to the client, so it is worthwhile to talk to the provider about what server resources the project will require. The provider should recommend the optimal solution, tailored to the specifics and requirements of the project.

Who is responsible for the production release?

This is not always obvious and does not always appear as a valuation element. It can lead to misunderstanding, so it is worth asking for details and the cost of releasing the finished product. Production release is additional work and is usually not included in the contract. If there is no record, it is best to ask at once whether the process is in the cost of the project, or whether you will receive an additional valuation. The responsibility of the software house ends with the release of the product. However, remember that the product requires care, monitoring and checking its proper functioning, catching possible errors and fixing them. Of course, you can make a complaint, but with its consideration and removal of defects there is a time when your product can be taken out of use. It is best to determine immediately whether you receive support from the supplier, e.g. in the form of an additional contract.

What about this SEO?

It's worth to be aware that the new product needs time to appear in high search engine results. To achieve such an effect it takes time and implement appropriate procedures, including SEO optimization. This is a complex process and usually outside the scope of creating the product itself. Working on SEO of a website belongs to marketing activities, implemented after the creation of a website. Software house can provide basic optimizations, e.g. by adding appropriate titles, headers and text structure. It is best to ask the provider what he can provide: basic support or content, keywords and internal linking. If software house does not have such a service in the package, it is worth to provide SEO of the website on your own or to have an external company and at the same time arm yourself with patience, because the effects require long-term and multi-stage work.

Do I need to send mass emails?

Many products send different types of notifications, invitations, verification emails, etc., which are very important and sometimes even critical for the whole project. If you don't think about the proper delivery of such emails early on, it can be disastrous for the success of your project. If the project is going to use mass-mailing you have to think about solutions that guarantee that the messages will reach your recipient. This is especially important when it comes to sending newsletters with downloads or verification links. It is worth talking to the developer, ask about the best solutions and together find an idea for optimal email deliverability.

Do you have data backup?

This is a question you do not want to hear when something unforeseen in your project happened. Then it may be too late to save the situation. One of the worst things that can happen to you is loss of data. Especially the customer data that is necessary for running a business or project.  Make sure that the question about backup does not surprise you. Talk to the developer before starting the project and ask how you can protect your data, how to prepare, run and monitor such backup. Remember that this is one of the costs that always pays off. The provider can prepare and present you with different options.

Does software house provide a guarantee?

A software product like any other is subject to the right to warranty. Sometimes this information is not readable and then the final acceptance of the product is dragged out for fear of lack of support when the product is released. It is worth asking about the warranty conditions, but also about the possibility of signing a dedicated contract, tailored to the specifics of the industry and specific situation. A good solution is also the SLA maintenance agreement, which will provide a quick response time in case of unexpected problems. You must know that the lack of a guarantee agreement does not mean a lack of guarantees. Then the product is subject to general Polish law, which provides a guarantee for all products. However, it is always worth having a written agreement with good terms and conditions, and an SLA agreement that provides immediate assistance.

Do you need data analytics?

The information you can collect from the website may come in handy at the most unexpected time. That is why it is worth taking care of the analysis of the website from the very beginning. It may seem to you that there is no data on the new website, not enough people visiting it, you do not want to incur additional costs. Choose an analytics in even the most basic form, to have minimal, raw data and how you will have to prepare a report in the future, have a basis for analysis. The basic implementation of e.g. Google Analytics is a small cost and the collected data may prove invaluable.

What about GDPR?

It is difficult to find an IT project in which personal data is not processed. Currently, we provide them on most websites and applications. In 2019, the new regulations of the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR)  came into force, i.e. the regulation on personal data protection, containing provisions on the protection of natural persons in connection with the processing of personal data and provisions on the free movement of personal data. You must remember that the restrictions related to this are very severe and the penalties are high. Incorrect handling of data may result not only in the control of the relevant authority, but also, for example, in the rejection of the mobile application during a review in the Store. Any data leakage is always your legal responsibility. It is also worth knowing that it is illegal to collect data that is not needed and that you will not use. It is best to consult a specialist in order to be best prepared for data storage and processing.