Why Prototyping Leads to Better Outcomes

Jessica Hall, Director of 3Pillar’s Innovate practice, recently published an article for Sticky Minds titled “Why Prototyping First Leads to Better End Products.” In the article, Jessica covers some of the many benefits development teams stand to gain if they prototype first before diving straight in to software design and development work.

One of the most important things that prototyping does is enable teams to validate ideas so that they can build consensus on what the highest value features and functionality of a product will be. Prototyping allows everyone associated with the success of a project, from engineers and designers to salespeople and marketers, get a vision of what the product will eventually become.

The medium for the prototype doesn’t really matter, Jessica says. Prototypes can be on paper, on whiteboards, PPT presentations, HTML & CSS mockups, or simply a sketch on the back of a napkin. The most important quality of a prototype is for it to give all involved stakeholders an idea of how exactly a product will function so that the prototype can be tested with others.

In the article, Jessica shares 4 keys to building successful prototypes:

  1. Start Small, But Start
  2. Be Comfortable with Showing Messy Work in Progress
  3. You Will Be Wrong, But it Will Make You Better
  4. Focus, Focus, Focus

Interested in reading more? See the full article to hear more of Jessica’s thoughts on how prototypes can be leveraged to drive more successful software development outcomes. Sticky Minds is, in their words, “the web’s first and most popular interactive testing community exclusively engaged in improving software quality throughout the software development lifecycle.”

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