MVP Development | Launch Plan, Skills, Investments
Minimum Viable Product Development: The Essence
Minimum viable product (MVP) development is a way to verify business assumptions for custom software or test the demand for a new product with minimum investments.
The delivery of an MVP generally takes from 2 weeks to 7 months, where the development stage specifically lasts from 2-5 days (for no-code/low-code development) to 6 months (for code-based development).
The investments for a launch of a software-based MVP may take from 1/10 to 1/2 - 1/3 of the final software cost.
The number of MVP development steps and their duration will vary depending on the complexity and novelty of a solution, as well as a minimum viable product type.
Below are described the typical steps we at ScienceSoft take to complete MVP development projects.
Step 1. Discovery and MVP planning
(2 weeks – 1 month)
Business analysis FOR PRODUCTS
- Product idea generation.
- Target market, customer, and competitor research.
- Creating a product concept.
- Identifying the selling price.
- Planning a KPI dashboard for MVP.
Check a sample KPI set for MVP
An informative KPI set can be lean and have, e.g., 3 key groups:
- Customer acquisition (e.g., the number of signups, the number of downloads, customer acquisition cost).
- Customer engagement and satisfaction (e.g., CSAT, shares/reactivations/invites).
- Predicted revenue (e.g., customer lifetime value, predicted monthly recurring revenue).
Business analysis FOR CUSTOM ENTERPRISE SOFTWARE
- Identification of business needs and business process improvement options.
- Project stakeholder interviewing and analysis.
- Software idea conceptualization.
- Feature outline for the full software version.
- Feature prioritization for the full software version based on user stories, user scenarios, prioritization techniques (e.g., Kano and MoSCoW), cost-benefit analysis, etc.
- Deciding on MVP functionality.
MVP architecture design
with attention to:
- High-level design of the final solution (if the MVP won’t be re-built in the future, but further improved in iterations).
- Performance requirements.
- Information security requirements.
- HIPAA, FDA, PCI DSS compliance (if needed).
Planning MVP integrations
with third-party systems (if needed).
Choosing a technology stack
for the optimum MVP development time, costs and efforts, software reliability (if the MVP is to stay and be further improved in iterations, the full software version should be kept in mind in the course of all considerations).
Step 2. Proof-Of-Concept (optional) and Rapid Prototyping (optional)
To demonstrate the software concept in a sales context, give an understanding of how the software will work to stakeholders, or check technical feasibility of software based on a highly innovative idea.
Step 3. MVP Development Project Planning
The main focus areas are:
- MVP development project scope.
- MVP development project deliverables.
- MVP development budget planning.
- The PM methodology (most often, one of the Agile options – Scrum, extreme programming (XP), etc.).
- MVP development project timeline.
- MVP development project schedule and breakdown into iterations and deliverables.
- MVP development project risks charter.
Step 4. MVP Development
No-code MVP development
Code-based MVP development
MVP UX design
Key deliverables of this stage are user personas and user journeys helping future customers fulfil their tasks quickly and easily, and drive conversions (for products).
MVP UI design
At this stage, custom design of user-facing parts (buttons, menus, tabs) is created.
Best practice: At ScienceSoft, we include this stage only if the design is a competitive MVP advantage. Otherwise, we use default themes and focus on the MVP functionality.
- Back-end development to build the MVP server side and APIs.
- Front-end development to transform static interface images provided by UI designers into a fully functional MVP client side, and ensure its communication with the server.
- Testing runs in parallel with development.
The result of this phase is a working MVP and supporting documentation.
Best practice: At ScienceSoft, we actively use many ready-to-use cloud components and services, mostly from AWS and Azure, to minimize MVP development effort and cost and streamline the delivery.
Step 5. MVP Launch and Further Iterations
Software gets deployed to the production environment ready for use. Complex MVPs can be first moved through testing and staging environments so that the team could safely introduce changes or catch remaining mistakes before releasing software.
Monitoring how users communicate with the MVP, the project team:
- Validates or redefines user stories.
- Identifies arising risks and updates a risk management plan
- Adjusts feature/features.
If the MVP gets market validation or shows positive changes in business processes, it can be completely rebuilt or further improved to cater for the needs and expectations of a growing number of users.
Build the Right MVP with ScienceSoft
With hundreds of successful minimum viable product development projects under our belt, we can help with:
MVP development consulting
- Help with your idea conceptualization.
- Define MVP functionality.
- Determine MVP tech stack and architecture.
- Advise on disruptive techs (AI, machine learning, big data, AR/VR, etc.).
- Help comply with GDPR, and your industry standards and regulations like HIPAA, PCI DSS, FIPS, and COPPA.
- Deliver a detailed MVP implementation roadmap.
End-to-end MVP development
Our team takes over:
- Product/enterprise application idea conceptualization and feature management.
- MVP UX and UI design.
- MVP development and testing.
- Integrations with third-party systems.
- MVP launch and support.
- MVP performance evaluation and further iterations.
ScienceSoft as a Reliable Software Consulting and Development Partner
Being in the process of an online marketplace launch, we looked for a consulting partner to help us shape a final product vision with strong competitive advantages. Having accomplished all the market research activities, ScienceSoft provided a report featuring our core competitors: their products’ efficiencies and drawbacks, and monetization models. They also did a great job creating a dynamic UX prototype of our marketplace and planning integrations important for fast and effective business workflows.
Managing Director, Deyarat Trading Co.
As of the start of my cooperation with ScienceSoft, I needed competent and proactive consulting to help me shape my startup idea of a mobile app for social networking into a tangible business plan. I also required assistance in leading the project all through the development and launch stages. As a result of this market entry consulting part, I gained clear visibility into the competitive market and got the project scope defined. The stage was really valuable as it allowed me to have the functionality of my app and the roadmap with the major milestones planned.
Founder, Abdulaziz Alibrahim
The ScienceSoft’s team has become an integrated part of Enonic, and we appreciate their efforts and passion for the product. The team is flexible and willing to try various technologies and frameworks to find the best possible solution to the problem at hand. As a result, Enonic XP has evolved into an easy-to-use and scalable platform, which is crucial for our success.
Morten Øien Eriksen
ScienceSoft is the name we would recommend to every company seeking a committed IT services provider. We have been working with ScienceSoft for 6 years and they have become our long-term technology partner. ScienceSoft’s professional and knowledgeable staff has the willingness to endeavor best efforts to ensure project success.
– oversees an MVP project, including delivery on time and on budget, preventing feature creep, etc.
Business Analyst (BA)
– elicits functional and non-functional MVP requirements, technical limitations, defines MVP modules and integrations with other systems.
– performs UX research, designs minimum necessary user interactions with an MVP, and information architecture, conducts usability testing.
– working closely with UX designers, creates aesthetically pleasing, custom visual style of the user-facing MVP interface.
Back-end developers (1-3)
– builds the MVP server side and APIs.
– creates the MVP client side.
Quality Assurance Engineer (optional)
– designs and implements the test strategy, plans and cases, validates the developed MVP and produces test summary reports.
Additional talents can be required, depending on the nature of the project, for example, you may need to draw on the skills of data scientists, 3D designers, etc.
- Direct supervision over the MVP development process and team productivity.
- High costs.
- No quick access to specific competencies.
- Prolonged MVP project start (if you don’t have a development department yet).
- All hiring and managerial efforts are on your side.
Partial outsourcing of technical resources
- Optimal resource usage at peak times.
- Quick access to specific tech knowledge when required.
- Project team coordination, quick and quality MVP delivery concerns and risk management are on your side.
Full outsourcing of technical resources
- Fast MVP development project ramp-up.
- Established communication and processes within the technical team.
- Project team coordination, quick and quality MVP delivery concerns and risk management are partially or totally on your side.
Full process outsourcing
- Vendor assumes full responsibility for the team arrangement and management, MVP development process establishment and coordination, quality of the results and related development risk management.
- Vendor risks are higher.
Technologies for MVP Development Recommended by ScienceSoft
In MVP development, it’s important to deliver quickly, at a low cost, and with a possibility to re-use MVP code in further development. Experience gained during our MVP development projects tells that popular cloud (Azure, AWS) services and components can help with the task.
- Ready-to-go services for advanced functionality (IoT, AI and machine learning, blockchain).
- Globally spread Content Delivery Network.
- Built-in containerization and orchestration tools.
- CI/CD management tools for automated building, testing and deployment.
- Scalable serverless data storage.
- Azure free account allows free access to popular Azure services (including Azure Virtual Machines, Azure SQL Database) for 12 months and access to more than 25 Azure services that are always free (including Azure App Services, Azure DevOps, Azure Machine Learning).
- Ready-to-go services for advanced functionality (e.g., AI and ML, blockchain, media broadcasting).
- Global content delivery.
- Built-in containerization and orchestration tools.
- DevOps and CI/CD tools (AWS CodeStar AWS CodePipeline).
- Scalable serverless data storage.
- Some AWS services include a perpetual free tier that offers enough capacity to validate MVP.
Power BI Embedded
- Easily embed reports and dashboards into an application.
- Start quickly with an extensive library of data connectors, fully documented APIs and SDKs.
Pricing (with Azure nodes):
The investments for a launch of a software-based MVP vary a lot – from approximately 1/10 to 1/2…1/3 of the final software cost.
The grand total for MVP development depends on a multitude of factors:
A US-based IT consulting and IT service company, ScienceSoft has been helping startups and enterprises envision and build software since 1989. Being ISO 9001 and ISO 27001-certified, we ensure robust quality and data security management. Contact us if you want to quickly verify your software idea with a high-quality MVP.