How can I reduce my software development costs?

June 26, 2024

In the complex world of software development, many businesses find themselves concerned about the high costs and potential pitfalls of outsourcing. This article shares the software design process which is used by i4PD to deliver quality and value for a wide spectrum of projects.

i4PD's approach is to work under a professional and structured methodology.  The main objective you should prioritise is a framework that achieves both efficiency and client collaboration. This article will explain the methods we've adopted through 20 years of design consultancy experience so you can build a strategy that will tackle your next daunting software job.

Spend more time than you think establishing requirements

From the outset of a new project, we work very closely with our clients to understand and define their needs. Using tools such as the house of quality (HOQ) exercise can be really helpful for translating high-level requirements into detailed technical features. The HOQ process is often supplemented by user story mapping and identifying different user personas - ensuring that the true desires of the target users are captured. 

Be iterative with early development

Building early prototypes is an often overlooked step in conducting cost effective software development. Early prototypes are essential for gauging progress and can be presented to clients or peers for feedback. Approaching development iteratively allows you to identify what works and what doesn't at an early stage. If you focus attention on the most critical features first, you might find that 80% of the product's value can be delivered with just 30-40% of the effort. Investing time in early stage prototypes reduces costs and accelerates the delivery of a usable product. 

i4PD Battery Design User Research

Use a pragmatic roadmap

While many in the industry talk about a minimum viable product (MVP), we've adopted an alternate approach inspired by leaders at Spotify. Consider a roadmap that includes three stages: the earliest testable product, the earliest sellable product, and the earliest lovable product. Using a roadmap where each stage delvers a level of tangible value makes the development process more fruitful. We've written an article that looks at this framework in more detail here. 

Be rigorous with your quality assurance

It might seem counter intuitive, but if you're looking to save money (especially in the long run) quality should be at the heart of your process . Maintaining rigorous standards through practices such as source code control, comprehensive design documentation, and thorough code reviews (ideally with multiple engineers) minimises the chances of having to take a step back in your development process. At i4PD we make sure at least two of our software engineers review every piece of software before it is released. 

In our business (product design consulting) effective QA is extremely important for delivering fast and cost effective work. We are automating the build and testing processes, and maintaining a defect tracking system that we share with our clients. If you have the facilities to employ these stages into your work they are highly effective for QA maintenance and management. 


i4PD software development

Time is money

Implementing a considered approach to software development can drastically reduce the time and capital required for a successful software project. Defining accurate requirements, prototyping early, and using a value focused framework are all effective ways of ensuring quality assured work in shorter timeframes. Time is money – an accurate cliché! 


If you’ve got a new product or idea you would like to develop, book a call to speak to one of our experienced engineers to discuss the next steps towards accelerating your product development.

To have a look at a selection of previous projects, please have a look at our portfolio of case studies.

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