As per my last blog, we’ve been designing a fab new reporting system for IssueCentre. We had built the foundations for the reporting mechanics in the previous product release, and so now we’re revelling in building all the bells and whistles that go on to that the customers will love. However its becoming clear that all our exciting ideas will need a large amount of resource to complete. This leads us into the commercial quandary of whether to cut features and plan to ship early and often or to not succumb to the temptation and produce more of a “tad-dah” wow factor effect when its all finished and polished.
Both approaches have major risks; the former has the possibility of leaving customers disappointed they can’t do more, whereas the latter suffers from the danger that customers and prospects give-up waiting and the product loses market share.
There have clearly been high profile examples of different vendors taking each commercial approach (albeit sometimes I suspect that the ship early approach has been adopted purely for shareholder satisfaction) and I think its fair to say that they could each argue that their approach has worked for them. For us, well, we’re so pleased with our design we want the customer to be wowed by our latest work and so I suspect we’ll be delivering slightly later this time.