Common project workshops

Last update: 2021-10-01
  • Created for:
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Throughout your ecommerce project, you need to have workshops to track progress. Common types of project workshops include:

  • Kick off
  • Discovery
  • Design
  • Technical
  • QA

Kick off

Kicking off a new project is exciting and at the same time can be a horror. The only thing that can save it from becoming a horror is proper kick-off planning and presentation.

Project kick-off is the initial step and needs to be properly planned and executed. Some companies do not require this as they feel it’s standard, but it still needs to be carried out effectively. This forms the foundation of the project.

There are a few phases of project kick-off:

  • Preparation
  • Attendance
  • Topics to cover
  • Next steps

Preparation

In this step, the project manager (and sometimes a few team members) get in touch with the client to understand when the project kick-off is scheduled, where it is located, and who is invited to attend. Usually, the project kick-off takes places at the client site to make the client feel more comfortable.

It is essential to include a presentation deck, proposed agenda, deliverable, team, and timelines to avoid any surprises. If face-to-face meetings are not possible with the client, you can also do an online (virtual) kick-off. Make sure that you are prepared for either scenario.

Attendance

It is essential to outline the attendees for the project kick-off. Having a big team that includes all developers and users will only complicate the kick-off. It is important to call key stakeholders from the client side, such as the project sponsors, C-level, and project leader. From the project team side, include the Project Manager, Functional Architect, Technical Architect, and the Engagement lead.

Topics to cover

Topics that you need to cover in the project kick-off depend on project size, requirements, and technology. Common topics include:

  • Project budget
  • Team introduction
  • Timelines
  • Deliverables
  • Milestones
  • Proposed dates
  • Communication mode
  • Training
  • Testing
  • Change request

Next steps

Next steps for an ecommerce project refer to outlining the requirements such as the build solution, design, and project planning. Be it a remotely managed project or same location project, the next steps need to be detailed so that the team is aligned.

Discovery

A discovery phase in ecommerce is conducted with the client leads, including the product owner, project team lead, and digital lead. C-level stakeholders sometimes get involved.

From the team side, the Project Manager, Functional Architect, and Technical Architect attend the discovery workshop. This phase is intended to go through all client requirements in greater detail to understand their business needs and expectations.

Design

Design and requirements go hand in hand. When building an ecommerce system, one of the first key workshops is the design workshop. The design of the site matters when it comes to attracting customers and increasing site traffic.

Client-side attendees in this workshop include, the digital provider, product owner, creative lead, and C-level stakeholders. Team-side attendees include, project manager, functional lead, and designers.

The purpose of the design workshop is to brainstorm what the client expects their storefront to look like. The following list includes suggestions for creating an effective workshop:

  • Start with an overview
  • Set a goal
  • Brainstorm the needs
  • Define the outcomes
  • Sketch Sketch Sketch!
  • Make teams within the client side to get feedback on each other’s work
  • Note down the likes and dislikes
  • Track time

Technical

The purpose of a technical workshop is to define the details of the technical aspects of building a site. During this workshop the client and project team side will go through various technical accepts related to:

  • Team skills in-house
  • Integration
  • Coding language
  • Order management system (OMS)
  • Enterprise resource planning (ERP)
  • Current or new platform

QA

Testing in ecommerce is important. You shouldn’t launch a site with bugs, broken pages, or a poor checkout experience.

Setting up an ecommerce site is complex and requires rigorous testing of the following:

  • Browser compatibility
  • Page display
  • Usability
  • Content
  • Availability
  • Products
  • Page load
  • Backup
  • Transactions
  • Processing
  • Integration
  • Login
  • Security
  • Performance

All of these items must be tested thoroughly because issues can negatively impact customer experience.

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