The planning process uses a defined set of planning meetings led typically by our Information Architect and Project Manager, in which we work closely with project stakeholders to interpret and document deliverables. We ask many of the same questions that would typically be asked by other technology partners in due course of the project. We just ask them a little earlier.
It is well documented (and quoted) that it costs 50-200 times more to correct an error during development than prevent the error during planning. Planning minimizes the risk of wrong delivery, late delivery, and/or over-budget delivery. Without adequate planning, the chances of creating the wrong solution are almost guaranteed.
We rely on a Client Needs Assessment to ensure both you and VAULT has an accurate understanding of the project before we are underway.
The planning process can take many forms depending on the complexity and the risk of acceptance of the final product. The deliverables can be anything from a functional/technical requirements document to a working prototype. Each method helps answer questions up front and thus avoids both costs and time to re-work solutions later.
These planning documents contain use cases, functionality requirements, wireframes describing screen layouts, data and technical requirements, integration/legacy considerations, error handling, and much more. The development and testing teams use the planning documents to ensure that the end product conforms to the requirements.