The True ROI of Doing It Right the First Time in Software Projects

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Have you been feeling rising anxiety before kicking off the new project? Are you facing the dilemma of choosing between rapid development and decent quality in your projects? 

Before you hit the gas pedal, consider this: investing in quality today will save you budget tomorrow. Many of our clients initially believed cutting corners and prioritizing rapid development over quality could lead to quicker, tangible results. 

However, this approach almost always backfires in inefficient processes, increased downtime, and the need for significant refactoring. 

Discover how Appsilon delivers exceptional software projects smoothly. Learn more in this blog post.

But fear not! This blog post is shedding light on sustainable success. Get ready to revise your approach and discover the key to fixing the delivery process, not hoping for the best.

What is Quality?

Under the term “quality,” The Cambridge Dictionary gives a short and to-the-point definition: How good or bad something is.

Like in every other human activity, in software development and data science, the quality of the solutions can be high, good enough, or dangerously poor.

One of the critical questions that a lot of leaders, managers, and product owners all over the world are asking themselves when kicking off a new project: Is it a good idea to plan for better code, more tests, and detailed QA processes while timelines and budgets are pressing?

The short answer is yes. Why? Because it will save you money in the near future.

To be exact: The high quality of your solution will start working to your advantage precisely on the last day of the project's delivery phase.

MVP Is Not About Cutting Corners

Now, when the AI revolution heavily influences the data science industry, the mythical ability to create flawless code is just around the corner. The reality is different. 

Many organizations fall into the trap of believing that prioritizing the rapid development of a massive backlog of ideas will lead to quicker market entry and more significant impact. At some point, this rabbit hole turns out to be an endless loop of debugging and patching the solution that was supposed to make things easier (and, in many cases, cheaper). It is entirely counter-productive.

The popular concept of MVP (Minimum Viable Product) in software development too often is a great excuse to cut corners and push for low-quality solutions. 

In Appsilon, we are following a different path. MVP, above all, means prioritization and the ability to consciously choose those requirements that deliver value to the end users. 

High quality means that we craft products that fit actual needs hand in hand with our clients. Investing in quality means discovering and understanding actual use cases. Only then will the return on this initial investment come true.

Quality means preventing unwanted and costly software behavior in the future. In practice, it equals lower maintenance costs and the ability to scale the solution and develop new features without risking technical architecture or business logic. 

Our clients know that for a fact:

  • Elkem - Appsilon introduced the "elkemVerse" - a suite of specialized R packages that streamlined Elkem's data application development. This led to optimized data application development, improved efficiency, and simplified processes, as well as safer and more sustainable code management for future development and updates, establishing a solid baseline
  • An Influential Wind Energy Company needed support in creating a sustainable and scalable infrastructure to further develop predictive maintenance processes and help optimize costs on ML modeling and computing in the long run. Careful revamping of the previous setup helped to prevent multiple data and infrastructure issues in the future.
  • A biotech company wanted accurate insight faster for decision-making through improved data analytics. Appsilon focuses on developing and scaling applications, letting each team focus on its specialty. Our optimizations reduced a key Shiny app's load time to just 30 seconds, enabling quicker, more efficient decision-making for our client.  

Fail Fast at the Beginning; Don’t Fail Ever Again

In the ideal world, where perfect software is produced, all initial ideas are spot on from day one. Well… maybe it is a fact in this parallel universe. In this reality, initial business and technical assumptions are often slightly off. Investing in quality also means we are open to changes, especially at the beginning of the projects. Creating prototypes fast, testing them extensively, and changing them are by far the best approaches to quality assurance that one can choose from. 

In practice, it means we will initially spend a small chunk of the budget to make some mistakes. Those mistakes are a necessary part of creating a bulletproof solution in the future. Most importantly, those mistakes are cheap, and making them at the beginning effectively prevents costly mistakes, such as refactoring or rebuilding the architecture when the product is halfway done. 

All the practical aspects of quality assurance should be integral to the development process from day one. Organizations can achieve stable, scalable, and low-maintenance cost products by embedding quality principles into every project delivery and lifecycle stage.

Curious about our approach to quality client delivery? Explore our short case study on launching an internal ML project in under 11 weeks for a global fitness leader.

Maintenance Costs Are Awful (and Refactoring Costs Are Even Worse)

To put it short, the quality of the solution will save maintenance and refactor money. 

The idea of delivering software solutions and totally handing them to clients ended a decade ago. Every system, dashboard, or application has to be maintained one way or another. It can be supported internally or externally, either way, it will cost something.

Starting a software project is a long-term game. The first bundle of features is usually only the beginning of the long process of changes that will last for months and sometimes years. The maintenance and further development cost is directly proportional to the quality of the initially delivered solution. 

Unfortunately, despite all the AI and ChatGPT conversations we can have on this topic, there are no shortcuts. The good news is that keeping high quality is not as complex or costly as it sounds. What's most important is that it is a conscious choice to invest and then wait for the return.

Ready to experience the benefits of high-quality, cost-effective software development? Get in touch with our experts today.

Did you find this blog post useful? Learn more about how we deliver quality fast to our clients in our customer success stories.

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Iwona Matyjaszek
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