Low-risk onboarding consultancy projects

Posted by Garrett on

Before jumping into a long-term relationship with a new client, I like to start with a small week or two long onboarding consultancy to test the waters. It’s a low-risk way to introduce our potential client to user-centered design and really see the value in working with us.

It’s also a great way for both parties to ensure the relationship is a good fit.

A quick lesson on user-centered design

At Good Work we practice a design methodology called user-centered design, which is really just a fancy way of saying that all decisions we make during the project process are on behalf of the project’s target audience — which doesn’t always turn out to be the same as our client’s initial requirements. That’s a good thing though, as it ensures we’re making the right thing, not just a thing. And it ensures we’re building something of value for our target audience!

Taking a user-centered design approach means we typically have a chunk of research, early prototyping and validation to do at the start of every project. Yes, our potential client probably already came to us with a specific set of wants and needs, but we have to validate them for ourselves before we can move forward.

While it is common practice in the creative professions to prescribe solutions without fully and accurately diagnosing the problem, in almost every other profession such a sequence would render the professional liable for malpractice.
Blair Enns, The Win Without Pitching Manifesto

The onboarding consultancy process

This whole process of up-front research, validation and using our expertise to figure out the right way forward works as a great, low-risk onboarding project with our potential clients.

Our onboarding consultancy process is a one week project to advise, validate and scope the needs and goals of the potential engagement. We focus on the humans that the project is for — figure out who they are, their experience levels and what they potentially expect to get out of the finished product. We brainstorm and prototype ideas, and come up with a solid plan to make the right thing, a road map to move forward and a prototype to reference for the future of the project, whether that’s with Good Work or another digital agency.

To summarize

Taking a user-centered approach to our work ensures we’re creating the right digital product or service for our clients. The work involved in our onboarding consultancy needs to be done regardless in order to create a successful digital project, whether during its own project or as the first phase of a larger one, but by unbundling it from our potential primary engagement we can make the purchasing process a lot less daunting for potential clients, and ensure our relationship is a good fit.

More Articles

3 years of Good Work

Posted by Garrett

Happy birthday Good Work, you’re 3. You survived your terrible twos, you can walk, talk, and more food is ending up in your mouth than on the floor. You’re not quite running yet, but that’ll be here before you know it. I spent the last few days thinking about where we came from, where we’re at, and where we’re going. Year one was all about validating the idea that people will pay us enough… Read More »

Donkeytail plugin for Craft CMS

Posted by Garrett

Today we released the lite version of Donkeytail, a Craft CMS plugin we’ve been using internally for a few months now. Donkeytail stems from a need we had to content manage dots on images. Maps come up a lot in our world. From maps for new development projects to maps for hiking trails through the Scottish Highlands, and most of the time it makes more sense to roll our own system for design… Read More »

Inaugural #CraftCMS meetup in Dallas

Posted by Boots

Yesterday we hosted the inaugural #CraftCMS Dallas meetup by our friends at Busy Noggin — complete with lots of pizza, Twig and general website chatter. A good time was had and we’re looking forward to being a part of the growing Craft CMS community here in Dallas. If you missed it but are into Craft, don’t fret - there’ll be plenty more to come. If you’ve not used Craft but are curious… Read More »

Bob’s your uncle!

Posted by Garrett

A hearty welcome to the latest additions to our growing family, Steve Sharpe and Gavin Platt. Steve’s in Nottingham with Chris, and Gavin’s from wherever he’s calling home this week (though his mailing address is in Leeds). Steve’s our new in-house engineer — building anything from complex enterprise applications to native apps for iOS and Android. Gavin joins us after 10 years as a self… Read More »

View All Articles

Envelope Icon

Join Our Newsletter

We don’t send them often, but you’ll want in on this action when we do.

Are you a design agency looking for a web development partner?

We can help