When entering into an engagement with a client, it is in our experience, always best to start with what we call a Discovery. Prior to entering into a more committed and expensive engagement, in order to justify this allocation of time and energy, some research must be done. The purpose of this research is of course to learn about a potential client's business. Only with a deep understanding of the business can we discern if a further engagement is truly justified or not. Additionally, it is a way of reducing financial risk for our potential client. For a smaller fee up front, we can reduce uncertainty that a further engagement is going to be valuable to both parties.
At Mikobyte, we don't believe in work for the sake of work. We believe in creating meaningful value for all of our clients, without exception. We don't want to force anything. If we can't convince ourselves that we can substantially move the needle for you, or if we don't believe we are the best fit for what you need, we promptly walk away from the potential project. We don't want to waste your our time or yours. Selfishly, we are only looking for the big wins because they are better for our brand, and similarly, we imagine a potential client would feel the same.
A Discovery consists primarily of a back-and-forth between Mikobyte and a client, usually in the form of interviews where we hone into the areas of your business that are most relevant to the problem or need we are intending to serve. Sometimes this results in requests for data that we would then further explore asynchronously. Due to the nature of this asynchronous communication and the potential wait time involved in scheduling interviews, this process can take anywhere between1-4 weeks depending on the depth of research required and the complexity of the business.
Normally, at the end of a Discovery a client would expect a Proposal outlining the specific problem(s) we intend to solve as well as the method(s) we would us. This Proposal would outline the technological and software Scope of Work required to fulfill the Proposal. Then it is entirely at the discretion of the client to continue the engagement with Mikobyte or not.
However, in other cases, a project plan or technology blueprint are delivered, helping to expose some components of a client's idea that may have been overlooked. It all depends on the details of the project and the needs of the client. For example, in some cases, the rigor we bring to excavating a client's early startup idea might disrupt what they thought they knew and other times it will reinforce their understanding of a particular problem they are having with more detail and precision. But no matter the project, a Discovery will always deliver insight that can be trusted to add clarity and used to make better business decisions.
We hope this article clearly illustrates why we believe a Discovery is an essential starting point for a committed engagement. Thanks for reading!