Startups are extremely common in the IT sphere. Inventors put forward a concept for a complex system while realising that they may have to wait a few years before they see any significant profit. Innovative projects always require a creative approach and this creativity, in turn, demands intelligent tasking and organisation, as well as a responsible attitude from the contractor. At EDISON we have encountered four main categories of startups.
The first category is “clone creation”. This is when a client intends to copy an idea from a successful pre-existing project. But cloning isn’t as easy as it seems at first sight. Even cloning requires a serious approach and a detailed requirements specification. The description of the system at the initial stage should reflect all the nuances of the product being developed, set out key areas to focus on and state the client’s expectations of the project. If this is not done properly when creating a “clone” startup, the contractor may be unable to grasp the client’s wishes and priorities, and may inadvertently ignore them. While the clone is being created, the original (which is also being developed) may undergo significant changes and this raises the issue of acceptance criteria. The initial plan must describe the requirements necessary to evaluate the complexity, cost and final acceptance of the project.
The second category of startups is “original concept”. Often the person who comes up with an original idea doesn’t really know what it’s going to evolve into later on. Moreover, the concept-creator may not know how to commercialise a bright idea. In this situation, we have to be prepared to accept the fact that the final cost of project development may turn out to be much higher than originally expected. It’s also important to consider the significant cost of promoting a new product.
The third category is “original concept & prototype”. Having a prototype produced from an original idea makes this type of startup more viable. Our only condition for development of this kind is that the client should have a specialist who is prepared to dedicate his or her time to working with the EDISON team.
The fourth category of startups is the rarest and most worthy of attention. This type of startup presupposes that clients have all of the components necessary for success: a unique idea, a working prototype, a detailed strategy for breaking into the market, a solid business-plan (which has been checked by a number of specialists), and first and foremost, a firm confidence in the project’s success and the expertise of their team. The main difficulty encountered when developing technical and commercial documentation for a startup is predicting how end-users will receive the product once it is completed. All details and necessary system functions must be considered beforehand based on this projection. It is possible that significant changes may have to be introduced to the requirements specification during the development process. EDISON’s team of developers constantly seeks to minimise the need for introducing additions or alterations and flexibly reacts to any necessary changes.
We believe that the first stage of a project should consist of a working prototype with a minimum set of functions, produced with the smallest possible labour expenditure. Nevertheless, it should have adequate functionality for presentation to investors and for the commercial launch of the system. It is impossible to set a fixed price for a startup development project beforehand. That is why payment per hour or per stage is preferable. The financial risk factor facing the investor(s) and contractor(s) is determined by the degree of uncertainty in the commercial success of the company which is being set up.
At EDISON Software Development Centre we breathe life into new ideas every day and are constantly working to develop our own unique projects. Our additional resources are focused on turning innovative ideas into products for our clients.