When we founded Yummygum back in 2009, our team was just two people strong. From building databases to designing the pretty pixels; nothing could stop us. Along the way we made a ton of mistakes by doing projects from A to Z without much structure, ownership and vision. “Just flip the switch in MAMP and we’ll see what happens next.”
Now we have a team of 10+ talented people who work on projects big and small with constant success. Our secret sauce is keeping a mind state of a small project, and apply this to big projects too. Whether you need an hour of UX consultancy or a complete re-brand with a website and software; we know how to tackle it.
Let’s dive into our successful approach, it’s just six steps.
> 80% of our clients return to us to collaborate again
Step 1: Understanding the project
It sounds simple but there are many hidden challenges when it comes to understanding a project correctly. Our process starts with one or two emails where we ask our clients all the right questions. This provides us with a general idea of the project scope, business goals and timeline.
Subsequently we like hopping on a call to debrief all the input, and confirm we have the right idea. These calls also allow us to brainstorm ideas and concepts for a possible outcome of the project. This clarifies expectations and creates alignment up front.
Step 2: Plan constantly
As they say: life gets in the way and professional projects are no different. Just ask the Dutch government that goes over budget with €1bn. Embracing flexibility allows us to be agile, responsive, and proactive to what really matters and avoid delays or overspending on time or budget. What you need and when you need it can (reasonably) change often. We remain on track to meet project goals and deliver exceptional results by constant communication and planning.
We rather decide together to postpone than rush the project.
Step 3: Assign the right people and skills
Because our team is full of experts and talent it’s imperative we allocate those resources to the right tasks for an efficient use of time. We have designers who can draw rectangles that end up as beautiful designs — while at the same time we have designers who religiously follow Steve Jobs’ quote “Design is not just what it looks like and feels like. Design is how it works”. Our project managers are constantly on the lookout to assign the right person to tasks that match their personality, skills, preferences and vision.
Step 4: Communicate constantly
Projects with us are a collaboration. We love an equal level of commitment to the success of a project. It may sound obvious, but it really requires dedicated blocks of time from all parties involved.
We need the input from our clients to understand and achieve what they’re looking for. Through rapid communication via Slack, hopping on a quick Google Meet call or planning a solid session at our office (or remote) with (digital) whiteboards. These all contribute to improved deliverables.
Step 5: Involvement from all stakeholders
Talking with your (in-house) designers or developers is something we love, as we speak the same language. However, it’s key to get stakeholders with decision-making power and deeply rooted knowledge of your company involved. Think of a CEO, CTO, Head of Marketing or even Head of Finance. All parties should be part of this process to get buy-in, and to receive useful insights from different aspects of an organization.
A pro tip to avoid design by committee, or to steer away from having too many opinions is to consolidate feedback from your team as one message. Discuss and decide internally, and share the outcomes as one voice and direction with us. In our experience this creates better products, and happier clients.
Step 6: Delivery and availability beyond
As an agency we know how to move fast, and get to results quickly. Once those results are there, we have a thorough process to get you up and running with our work. Documentation and handoff video calls are standard practice. The main goal is to get your team maximum usage from your investment.
We don’t leave you hanging either when we finish a project together. Working with small projects or retainers beyond initial scope is something that we love to do to guarantee long term success for your organization.
Up for a collab? Big or small?
By now you have an idea of how we tackle projects and why our clients keep coming back for more. Ready to figure out how we can help you achieve your goals and reach the next level? Let’s make it sticky together. In a tasteful manner of course!