The importance of prototyping

How rapid prototyping could help you get your software right first time

Rapid prototyping helps you make mistakes quickly and cheaply, before the investment of much time and money. As the great architect Frank Lloyd Wright said, “You can use an eraser on the drafting table or a sledgehammer on the construction site”.

A build project can be daunting. Using prototypes during - or before - an agile development project can be your answer to getting everyone on board with the direction of the product – and ensure you will be spending budget on something that works for users.

Concepts never arrive fully-formed; that’s why we advocate rapid iteration. We can test and make changes many times over without breaking the bank. This means you can oversee many concepts tested out and conclude with confidence which ones are going to work for your users. When you come to build it for real, the big questions will have been answered and the details can receive the focus they deserve.

We make prototypes from the lowest to the highest fidelity. They can be paper-based, basic greyscale wireframes, fully designed pages or even HTML and CSS code. Often you can rapidly user-test most of the system using paper alone, but wireframes are the most popular choice. We’ll present some concepts to you, work them up into prototypes, and go out and test it with real users in the real context. This will fully demonstrate what works and what doesn’t.

We love this part of the process because it is highly collaborative and can uncover solutions that simplify products before they are even built.

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