Why should your company strive to define as much of product specifications as possible before entering the development phase?
- increases profitability
- better success possibilities
- faster to market
- the right product for the right market
- higher market share
- brand quality awareness
- eliminating unnecessary iterations
- fewer interruptions in the development stage
What causes changes of product definition during development?
- lack of information (marketing, technical,...)
- not proven conclusions and specifications
- lack of communication
- vagueness and ambiguity of specifications
- lack of organization and systematization
How can we control this changes?
Changes have and always will happen durring the development phase. To minimize them, we should dedicate more time to it in the early stages and:
- distinguish between fact based and proven specifications, and not yet proven assumptions
- we need to test this assumptions before we take them for granted and before we base the whole development process on them. The easiest way to do this, is to build a prototype just to prove this particular specification.
- because not all assumptions can be proven at the beginning, we should make a plan how to validate them in the development stage
- although people are experts on their fields, don't trust them blindly.
- once the specification document is completed it must be checked and accepted by all departments that will contribute to the development of the product.
- the need for new specifications and changes will still appear. But before you make this change, double check that this is real and correct.