In a perfect world, web developers and their clients would live happily ever after, from the get go. They’d gather together, agree on a concept, make a plan, and then execute it, with no issues. Time management would be effortless. There’d also be many tacos. It. Would. Be. Perfect.
Unfortunately, things rarely happen that way. Almost half of all large web design projects take longer than planned. One of the best ways to ensure your next website launches on time is to know why so many others don’t. Arming yourself with information about the common causes of delays is a solid move. You’ll be better equipped to avoid the time sucking wormholes in your path.
Here are 3 time-management problems that hold up web development projects, along with some simple solutions you can put to use immediately.
#1 Unrealistic Schedules
Some web development projects are bound to take longer than expected. These are the ones that begin under a banner of unrealistic expectations. Perhaps the web design team gave a highly-optimistic estimate to win new business. Or maybe the client insisted on pushing for a fast launch date. Regardless, everyone was bringing a large platter of Impossible to the planning table.
You can get better estimates from your creative team by asking more questions. How many of their projects reached their deadline on time and for the fee quoted? Can you verify this through case studies or references?
You should also do your part to encourage realistic timelines. Trust those you’re working with to use their time, and your own, efficiently. Web development is a huge undertaking. Your web developers’ requests for time to test, revise, and be ready for any potential issues, are valid. Don’t press them to remove these expectations from their proposal. Then you can avoid disappointment down the road, when reality sets in.
#2 Client-Side Delays
Clients tend to worry about web developers taking longer on a project than intended. Alas, it’s even more common for client-side delays to hold up projects. Ah! How the tables have turned!
Don’t worry. We understand. It’s easy for executives to over-deliver when they’re excited about a project. The energy of the idea can mask the amount of work and communication involved. We’ve seen dozens and dozens of websites face delays because of the client. For example, they’ll be unable to provide content for a new set of pages on time. Writing new material sounds easy until you sit down to do it. Suddenly, the entire workday has passed and you’re still staring into the abyss of a blank screen. (Not that we would know anything about that…).
Another roadblock that causes delays is poor communication. Disagreements between different executives or departments can slow down the revision process. A lack of quality, clear feedback can grind a project to a halt. You can prevent these issues by planning ahead. Set the right expectations and workflow processes in the beginning. Be sure these are in place before the creation of actual designs and software.
#3 Poor Project Management
Designing and assembling a large website is a complex and intensive endeavor. This fact is often overlooked or completely missed. There can be a ridiculous number of parts to put together. Thousands of images, text blocks, plug-ins, and meta descriptions are the tip of the iceberg. Your team generates, combines, and integrates each piece into the entire plan. The most experienced web design teams realize this. So, they structure work in a way that makes sure bottlenecks are rare. They’ll emphasize sequential and parallel planning. This helps to avoid the duplication of any jobs. And, no one is ever ‘stuck’ waiting for something that won’t arrive for a long time.
When it comes to institutional web design, artistic and technical skills are important. But, don’t overlook the importance of strong planning and project management.
We Handle Complex Web Design Like No One Else
At Atlantic BT, building large and complex websites is our specialty. If you want to turn your project into an example of efficiency, rather than suffering through delays and budget overruns, we can help. Schedule a free consultation to learn more.