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Discovery phase for the startup
Team

1 Business analyst
1 Project manager
1 UX Designer
1 Solution architect

Duration
3 weeks
Technologies

Java, Angular, Ionic, Web Sockets

The discovery phase for a startup that connects photographers

The client came to us with the idea of a service that can connect photographers and videographers. The main idea was to build a startup helping to find additional qualified crew for shooting. For example, a photographer looks for a second photographer or assistant for the big wedding photoshoot. He/she can post a job offer on the platform and other photographers may apply for this job.

Our client was working in the photography industry and detected a problem of finding skilled photographers for assistance. The client came to us thanks to our previous experience in the photography sphere.

Our goal

Our goal was to help the client implement his startup idea and form a clear project scope. To achieve this goal we agreed on starting the discovery phase.

Discovery team

We engaged a discovery team consisting of:

1. Business analyst, who worked on the use cases and project requirements in cooperation with the client.

2. Solution architect, who designed the project development architecture and chose the tech stack.

3. UX designer, who was responsible for building excellent user experience and clickable wireframes.

4. Project manager, who managed the discovery phase, developed the project plan, cost estimation, and timelines.

Also, we engaged the client and potential users to get valuable inside information and user feedback.


Findings



The team held requirement elicitation sessions with the client every 2 or 3 days to:


● identify what problems the application will solve for the users (to help photographers find qualified crew and assistance).
● find out how competitors address similar problems (there were Upwork and Facebook groups who connect photographers for such purposes).
● visualize the customer journey to make sure there are no gaps in the customer experience.
● create interactive prototypes ready to be tested out by real users.
● form the Software Requirement Specification (SRS) that outlines the composition of the development team and the tech stack for the project.

Discovery phase helped us to form clear project scope and budget, also we evaluated external and internal factors, which allowed us to decide with functionality and technologies of the project.

Trial period 

During the Discovery phase, we had the assumption that users prefer to start with a trial period in order to get acquainted with the system and then decide whether to buy a subscription. As opposed to the initial decision of the client to go without the trial period. We decided to test the assumption and developing a system provided enough flexibility in order to change the subscription model, if necessary. Measuring the number of subscribers, we discovered that majority falls off at the stage of payment. After the tests, our team redesigned the subscription strategy to freemium and offered it to the client. The change resulted in a 30% revenue growth per year. 

Verification 

Based on our research we discovered that the main problem of finding assistance for the photoshoot was a low qualification of the candidates applying for the job via Facebook groups. To overcome this issue we decided to have a verification process before registration to ensure the user has sufficient qualifications and up-to-date portfolio in order to apply for jobs. 

Results 

After one month of the discovery phase, we started full-fledge development which took us 7 months to complete. We build a web application aimed to assist in building a trusted crew. One year after the launch client managed to have +1500 paid subscriptions and over $100 000 worth of jobs posted.