www.zeroonezero.com DDA CMT DDA Medical Dynamic Digital Advertising DDA Video DDA Apps DDA USA DDA SEM

Keeping Projects in Scope

As I discovered last night, my tour of the colleges on the Eastern seaboard is not over. On the contrary, it’s really only just begun. With five down, there are eight more lined up from now until November. I received the e-mail from my younger sister yesterday. The best, or worst, part of this is, when I commented that 13 colleges is probably enough to visit, she said “No, I may want to see more.” At this point, I’m praying that one of these visits will result in an epiphany that will have her screaming out in joy “This is the place I want to be.” Then the cranky early-morning starts, long car rides, and pig-outs at the various cafeterias will end.

While I’m growing very weary of this exercise, I don’t want to hamper my sister’s exploration. This is a big choice she’ll be making and I want it to be an informed one. At the same time, I think we need to reign it in a bit and narrow the field. I also fear that similar to dining at a restaurant with a lot of menu choices, the more she sees the harder it will be to make a final decision and the more chance for regret upon acceptance.

This is not unlike the some of the issues we face at DDA. When starting a new relationship we are very careful to try to pin down the client’s needs as much as possible so that we can create an accurate cost estimate and not have any surprises for ourselves or the client later down the line. Even so, sometimes things change. A company goes through a shift, a new person is brought on board, or once involved in the process, they start thinking about all the possibilities to make it better and greater. Our process is such that the client is well aware of every step we take with plenty of opportunity for review and revisions. Website design and development, graphics design, video production, 2D and 3D animations, and more are all subject to great critique and refinements. There are never any shocks at the end because by the time completion rolls around the client has seen it many, many times.

With all of this taken into consideration, we have to be extremely careful to ensure that the project remains within the initial scope we quoted.  We want to build long-term relationships and be as transparent in our process as we can. Sometimes that means letting the client know that the request being made will take the project in a whole different direction and suggesting another method that would be more cost and time efficient. In essence, we have to walk a very fine line between giving the client exactly what he or she wants and keeping the project as close to the original specs as possible. This isn’t always easy but somehow we manage to offer high-quality interactive and traditional marketing and advertising services while keeping our clients happy.

This now has me thinking. Perhaps I should have drafted a proposal for my sister at the start of this college-hopping journey. Then we both would’ve been quite clear from the beginning that my fabulous company and excellent driving skills are only available for a certain number of 4-hour tours.

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Entry by: toni

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