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Thread: Web development company chaos

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Feb 2014
    Posts
    1

    Web development company chaos

    Hi everyone, I'm new to this forum. I'm not a web developer as such but have just joined a company who are building a new web based platform for such things as magazine and music recommendations.

    The problem is nothing works properly. They are working with a company of developers outside of the UK (which is where we are based) who work on the Agile ( Sprint/Scrum) method which seems not to be very Agile at all!

    The people in my office, have been testing this website daily since January! An excel sheet of bugs as long as the A1 are entered every day into the test spreadsheet and it sometimes takes days or weeks for anything to get fixed!

    This is the first website company I have ever worked with but as a business person, this way of working seems insane!
    Surely the people who are building the site should be cross platform testing it before we at the office need to beta test?

    I mean we're literally telling them about every element of the site that doesn't work but it's really basic things which I would imagine a web developer to know already when they are building the site!
    The design of the site is outdated and not user friendly and I can see the whole thing folding if they don't sort it out soon!

    I'm alarmed and confused at the inadequacies of their current working model and want to suggest the following:

    A) The company employ an onsite office based website developer and designer who can liaise with the offshore web development team

    B) We get rid of the 'Agile' mode of working

    Is there anything else you guys can think of that a company doing a start up would need ? They have an office with plenty of staff and even investors - it's just that at the moment most of the office staff's time is spent testing the software which doesn't work as it should!

    Thanks for any help
    Zipp

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Mar 2012
    Posts
    1,644
    The keys to this issue are:

    1. The terms of service which were (hopefully) agreed in writing at the outset:
    - Were the contractors required to cross-platform test the code?
    - What is the agreed turnaround for bug fixes?
    - Is it being achieved?

    2. The detailed requirements spec (hopefully) agreed in writing at the outset (or shortly thereafter):
    - Are the bugs wholly implementation errors?
    - Is there an element of requirements creep?
    - If so, how is that being managed?

    If the requirements were not spelled out in detail, or, worse still, are changing like the wind as the work progresses, then the client may be equally (if not primarily) responsible for the chaos that has ensued.

    3. Having the right people in the right roles:
    - Is there a designated person who acts as the "client", who has overall authority and responsibility for the development?
    - What qualifications/experience does the Project Manager have?
    - Is there a designated project management team, and how often do they meet?

    Project management is an art and a science, but above all else is a skill. Requirements often evolve as a project progresses, the skill is to manage that, and to segregate it from under-performance by the contractors.
    Last edited by jedaisoul; 02-23-2014 at 03:27 PM.

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