Some marketing agencies have full in-house DevOps and some have nothing at all. Others are between the extremes.
For the former, an outsource partner is going to be a little better fit with peripheral roles, such as subject matter expertise… consulting on things like security and ADA compliance.
For the agencies with bare-bones web-dev in-house, of course, could look to the full-service aspect of outsourcing… the front-end-back-end-sysadmin-SEO-QA-design-3Drendering-content-development so you can rest medicine.
For everyone else, well, just like the first two examples, that’s the beauty of outsourcing. One can really pick and choose what’s needed.
Q: But how do we know what’s needed?
Here are some key things an outsource partner will do regarding scope development
(and “refined scope development” is a better term if the agency has a good start already):
Nullify Scope creep
(Refining, refining, refining)
Often, an agency team and paperwork are already on board. That’s good!
Then, a true outsource partner will dig even deeper, asking the tough questions, finding the skeletons, refining it all, preventing surprises.
- Do we need personalized shopping carts, product configurators, locators?
- How many products? Dozens, hundreds, thousands?
- When will the artwork be in hand, and what condition is it in?
- Tie-ins to CRM or Salesforce or ERP? Triggered email distribution?
- Special attention to security and ADA compliance?
- Sensitive customer financial information, such as credit card accounts?
- Is the site going to be translated? Auto translation or true translation?
- What server? Which host? Where is the domain?
(Everyone is fully informed)
Timelines, deliverables, expectations and costs are clarified and communicated. Every milestone, every step. It’s all need-to-know.
- This is our timeline for regular meetings.
- Here’s when we receive and process art and photos and content.
- This is when we code and show initial design pages, secondary design pages, etc.
- Here’s when we do testing, propagation and QA with a full site test-drive.
- We launch and do post-launch review on these dates.
- Aaand always verifying… we are ensuring there is proper time allotted to each step.
Demonstrate The work
(It’s not an easy button)
The partner supplies detailed descriptions of what is being done; how and why. Outlining the resources required and aligning them with the where and when.
During this process, additional revenue opportunities may even be discovered, such as 1) charging more for complex steps that need to be taken or 2) bringing forward additional ideas that could be included or 3) developing digital tools and intellectual property as a “plus”.
- It uncovers opportunity, prevents money from being left on the table.
- It’s a staffing solution that fills interim gaps in personnel needs OR helps the core staff retain its focus as the agency flexes outward when additional skills sets are needed (core-flex staffing).
- Costs less than full-timers, no cost of benefits, no onboarding, no hiring or firing.
- Every possible skill is available and remote, less infrastructure and overhead required.
- It’s wholesale, the agency only pays for 100 percent productivity.
- It turns AGI into ooh-la-la.
A fully detailed discovery session for “refined scope development” with an outsource partner should be done gratis, before any work begins. It enables any agency to price the project properly and reduce risk. And the opportunity for margin is substantial because of the win-wins mentioned above. Additionally, if the outsource turns out to not be the right fit, the agency still has a tangible, highly refined scope doc that can be shopped around.
With compliments from White Label IQ, find the following questionnaires and surveys that help partners develop a refined scope: