When it comes to strategy and planning, we believe that being goal directed, diligent, and flexible is more important than strict adherence to any one specific method or framework. That being said, it's not a total free-for-all. There are some guidelines we adhere to because, well, they work.
First, we find that the right mix of roles is critical. Finding this mix requires input from the business, executives, and your technology group. For our part, we find consultants with a broad range of experiences are the most effective. We consider ourselves technology generalists (which is to say we believe in solving business problems with the appropriate technology for the situation, rather than the one we have the most experience with). Project/Product Managers and Business Analysts with deep technology backgrounds or Developers with business consulting experience will provide the most value for your team.
Second, we find that specific methodologies such as SCRUM/Agile can be incredibly powerful in implementation phases, but are less meaningful during strategy and planning. To drive good decision making, we think it's more important to question conclusions and refuse to accept easy answers. As part of this, organization, transparency, and direct communication are among our foundational beliefs.
Strategy determines--to a greater extent than anything else--whether or not your product is going to be successful. Every product, and especially every GOOD product, begins with thorough envisioning, strategy, and planning.
While it's often tempting for consultants to jump right in to development or marketing or deployment, we get involved at that oh-so-critical stage when you're figuring out what your product offers, who it provides value to, and what level of investment you need to make. To that end, our services extend to these key phases:
It can be challenging to take a step back and see your own idea from a new angle. We can help you take your idea and frame it within the context of the marketplace and your business. Associated activities range from facilitated brainstorming, whiteboarding sessions, interviews with industry leaders and stakeholders, or the simple capture of various ideas and approaches with a careful, clean, and direct analysis of the pros and cons.
Even when you have a great idea, placing it in the context of a real business opportunity can be an entirely different exercise. We can help you determine an appropriate product strategy and calculate your potential return on investment.
Activities might include roadmap creation, market analysis, quantitative analysis, and the creation changes strategy documentation to drive executive buy-in.
You've got a vision and a strategy. Now, it's critical to plan your product's lifecycle. We can help you figure out resourcing, budgeting, and scheduling for every phase.
Successful products are based on decisions made with data and objective information. That's why it's crucial to understand the competitive landscape as well as the markets you're aiming to sell to. We can help you identify this information and learn how to use it to your advantage.
Innovation can be elusive, kinda like love. You can't just buy it in a bottle, but you can get yourself out there and improve your chances of finding it. Meaning what? To achieve truly transformative innovations, you have to set yourself up with the ideal conditions. Continue promoting innovative thinking and it's bound to happen. Strategy and planning are essential to getting there.
In reality, the development and implementation of a product take the least amount of time, but cost the most. From a strategic and logistics/operations perspective, the risk in execution is-- to put it bluntly-- huge.
For this reason, we believe it's vital to not just figure out what you want to build, but how you want to build it. Good planning will make execution that much smoother and safer.
In the end, envisioning, strategy, planning, and market research are all targeted at minimizing and mitigating your risk. As a business owner or stakeholder, you deal with enormous risk everyday. We can help you identify those risks, determine their potential impact, and come up with a coherent plan to mitigate them so you can keep everyday operations running smoothly.
At our core, FNX Studios is creative. Our goal is to create useful products and experiences that have a positive impact on your consumers and users while establishing loyalty and trust in your brand. Creativity is an inherent part of this goal. And, design is an integral part of our cross-disciplinary team, whether we're talking about Software Development, UX Strategy, Interface Design or Branding. We find poetry in code. Art in interaction. Pure beauty in a well executed logo or icon. (You probably never thought of technology geeks as creative, too, did you?)
Our creative services focus on the following disciplines:
Left or right-brained-- come one, come all. We work together to form a digital think tank that revels in a good challenge. We're passionate about design and see it as an opportunity to share your company’s story. A way to weave your message through every experience, from products and services to communications. Whether we're creating a new software product or your app, each experience is a chance to let your brand sing. Our goal is to make it pitch perfect.
Step one: we listen. Seriously. Then we talk. We'll consult with you to decide whether you're in need of User Experience development (UX), Information Architecture (IA), or both. For large-scale software projects and applications, a strong foundation is critical. We determine the best user experience strategy, then build wireframes that implement intuitive interface design and logical information architecture. (Translation: we make it awesome.)
Using approved wireframes, the desired visual approach and competitive analysis, we move in to the creative phase. The goal here is to communicate clearly while maximizing emotional impact. As part of this process, we'll present a range of directions for your feedback and approval.
Once you've approved an overall creative direction, we hunker down. We craft and engineer the remaining designs, test for usability to confirm design direction and intended interaction, and we share it with you for final input and approval. If our alchemy is on, the result is two parts science, one part magic.
Making stuff. That's what the development phase of the product lifecycle is all about. Our goal here is to create a technical solution in the most sustainable and manageable way possible. We love to make things. And the only thing we love more is making things even better than they already are. So you can rest assured that we'll work diligently to craft a solution uniquely suited to your objectives and needs.
Our development consultants are technology generalists, meaning we work with whatever technology is the right fit for the problem at hand. There is no forcing of square pegs into round holes. We have extensive experience with the Microsoft technology stack, but again, our team will figure out what's right for you. When it comes to development, our services include:
This service is the heart and soul of our firm, and a way we help you bring your idea to life. We work with a range of technologies, including:
Your standalone products can benefit from the creation of a platform or the improvement of your current platform -- we can help with both. The end result is a scalable solution that helps you retain and grow market share.
Most businesses use a range of systems; integrating those systems results in increased efficiency. Leveraging our generalist approach, we'll work with you to put the pieces together into a coherent, fluid whole.
Companies need a mobile offering to stay competitive, and we want to help you either get your foot in the mobile door or make your existing mobile products even better.
Improving your processes -- whether that means adopting a standard development methodology such as SCRUM/Agile or standardizing your source code, testing, and project management software into a single platform such as Team Foundation System -- can make a fundamental difference to your bottom line.