Product Development


Product Development

  • 24th October 2021

As per a market survey (by Harvard Business School professor Clayton Christensen), 95% of software products fail commercially. There are many factors that may be listed in the survey. But here are some technical reasons and facts behind it.

On a high level there are three stages of a software product:

* Marketable Product

1. Here most software product owners start with an idea based on the demand from end clients.
2. This idea, paired with eye-catching and attractive features, and real-life problem statements are the key factors that lead to product development.
3. The focus is to give a defined shape to the visualization and convert it into a reality.
4. Technically, the biggest aspect is Design, R&D, and connected components. Complexity may vary depending on the idea, features of the product.
5. Product owners are willing to invest (sometimes either overpromising or underestimating the cost) by looking at the idea. At the same time, marketing also starts to form their basis on the usability of the product and start identifying potential customers.

* Usable Product

1. This stage starts when marketing converts the presentations to potential clients.
2. Most of the work in this stage is developing detailed-level features and functions (not covered in the earlier stage) for the product.
3. It is interesting to see how the direction and priorities change over the course of time, as potential customers provide their feedback and in certain cases, demand to include features that were not in the initial roadmap. This stage is a pure test of the product owners.
4. Development and Testing would be in full swing and quite demanding about additional time and resources.
5. This stage is fact-finding or realization of the cost (which was assumed in the previous stage) to develop a product and accommodating the dynamic needs of potential customers (which was completely missed to consider in the previous stage).
6. The goal is to deliver the product which end-user can use it. Yes, a usable product.
7. This stage has no defined end, it is based on the functional demands from customers and new features that are part of the initial requirements.

* Scalable Product

1. This stage is a crucial stage of the product. All products reach this stage, but unfortunately, 95% of the products do not clear this stage completely.
2. The components in this stage are completely technical but critical for the clients and product owners.
3. Mostly, product owners are hesitant to give priority to these components. One obvious reason is, they have already invested a lot in earlier stages and are now looking for returns. Without these components, a product will not be successful. It will not satisfy customers and will not sustain the competition to make money out of it.
4. Lack of technical capability is another reason; these components need specialty skills/expertise.
5. Below are the components we are talking about:
   * Security
   * Performance
   * Scalable infrastructure
   * Accommodation of latest technologies
   * DevOps, Releases
   * Support