Technology IS your customerexperience in 2010As technology continues to become more of a force in our everyday lives, it is clearthat technology is your customer experience. Leveraging that knowledge can helpyou innovate in ways you’ve never dreamed of 2010 is the year many technologieswe’ve been watching move from science fiction to reality.The adoption of cloud services and cloud infrastructure will allow us to do morefaster. It used to take six weeks to provision a server; now it will take 15 minutes.Scaling on demand used to mean having servers sitting around wasting money.Bringing a social network to your site used to mean months of coding; now youcan do it in hours using Facebook Connect. These cloud services are enablingapplications like never before, whether it’s for your HP printer or new Chrome OS-based device. Application innovation will come at a blistering pace.In 2010 we are finally going to see the reality of experiences like those in “MinorityReport.” The gap between science fiction and reality has significantly decreased.With the release of Windows 7 having multi-touch built in and the Wii leading theway on new experiences, imagine new ways to delight your consumers with thesetechnologies in your stores and on their personal computers and other devices.With the exciting competition going on in mobile brought about from the success ofthe iPhone and the introduction of Android, we are going to see mobile be a standardpart of your Web application development. The days of it being nice to have budgetfor such efforts are gone. Not only will a cool iPhone application bring marketingvalue, it’ll bring power users—just the zeitgeist you want to tap.Lastly, Agile makes a comeback in 2010. I know we’ve been talking about iterativeand Agile practices for years, but moving from traditional slow-moving waterfall,fixed-time contracts has been difficult. People have convinced themselves theycan get it all right even before they start using the product. Not only will Agile helpyou innovate faster, but it will also help you deliver by leveraging better communi-cation practices for distributed and offshore development.Technology can transform your business and this report explores the technologiesthat are making that possible. From the opportunities cloud computing presents,to the innovation Agile processes can produce, these technologies will shape thebusiness landscape in 2010 and beyond. 1
Social brands are enabled through cloud services anddistributed application technologiesShiv Singh @shivsingh & Ray Velez @rvelezpg 5Why the Cloud Infrastructure Is Crucial to Your ExperienceTobias Klauder @tklauder & john cunningham @j_j_cunninghampg 11Multi-Touch Transforms Retail in 2010Steve Dawson @stevedawson & Luke Hamilton @lhamiltonpg15Mobile: You Say You Want A Revolution? You got onePaul Gelb @paulgelb & Michael Scafidi @mdscafidipg 19Feeling Agile: in 2010, Its time has finally come for goodJohn Ewen @johndewen & Ray Velezpg 25Key trends in 2010 that will change your businesspg 32 3
Social Brands are enabledthrough cloud services anddistributed applicationtechnologiesShiv Singh, VP & Global social media lead, New York &Ray velez, Chief techonology officer, New YorkWe know for a fact that the most successful brands in 2010 will be the socialbrands with social voices operating in real-time. The notion of social voices impliesreal people participating, talking and guiding consumers on behalf of their compa-nies in an engaging and conversational manner across every consumer touchpoint,digital or traditional. But a social voice alone is not going to be enough.A key ingredient will be working in real-time across the spectrum. That meansreal-time in terms of the campaigns that are launched and executed, the mini-applications that are developed and pushed out, the products launched in responseto changing needs, the targeted consumers and the customer services offered.Cloud services are a necessity to deliver on the promise of social brands. You simplycannot launch a digital product, run an online marketing campaign cost effectivelyor reach new users quickly unless you are using cloud services. Nor can youintegrate your own marketing efforts into the broader social Web without leveragingcloud services in the same way as Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn. Why? Becauseonce integrated, these social applications can drive immense traffic to your digitalproduct, Website or microsite when you least expect it, resulting in you needing toscale your infrastructure up quickly and roll out new features to capitalize on theincreased attention.Social brands will know how to leverage technologies like Facebook Connect todrive traffic and eyeballs to the brands. Open APIs will help brands get their wordout on platforms like Twitter. Building small distributed applications will make surepeople interact with your brand anywhere they are, whether it’s on an iPhone,Android or HP Printer. While these social cloud services are broad and far reaching,you do need to proceed with caution. 5
Cloud services power social brandsAt its heart, cloud services are made for real time social applications. The cloudhas all the necessary capabilities, it’s open and highly available, and built to handleunexpected peaks and valleys of traffic. We define cloud services as open capabilitiesavailable through open API’s or direct access. Everything from Salesforce.com toTwitter’s open APIs to Google maps fall in the realm of cloud services.One of the earliest and most powerful examples of cloud services are authenticationservices like Windows Live ID or Facebook Connect. These services enable usersto log in and register to any site, without having to re-register. Leveraging their openAPIs, we can integrate them to our site automatically, providing a way for peopleto start sharing the brand. Just years ago, your brand would have had to build thisfunctionality for each of your sites and ask users to register. Those days are longgone and with even broader open standards like Open ID and OAuth growing,locking in to one vendor will potentially go away as well.Moving past authentication services are the incredibly powerful portable socialgraph services. Think of portable social graph services as the ability to pull yoursocial graph (sometimes called a network) to any branded site that integrates thatAPI. Facebook, LinkedIn, and MySpace are all great examples of cloud servicesthat let you pull your social identity and social graph to a participating site.For example, a user logs into your site, posts back to their Facebook wall aboutyour site, and drives three more unique visitors to your site. It can literally put yourbrand on the map. People don’t have to search to find your brand when they cantrust their friends to sell your brand.Following and responding in real-time helps get your message out instantly. Itcreates a mechanism to drive traffic to your site without depending only on peoplesearching for your keywords or happening upon your display ads.
Without the cloud, real-time interactions would not be available. Twitter’s open APIenables your content to travel across followers’ social graphs instantly. Tappinginto real-time cloud services through open APIs is becoming easier and easier asstandards and capabilities evolve with impressive results.There are even cloud services to aggregate other cloud services. For example,Yahoo’s Yahoo Query Language (YQL), allows you to pull together multiple Webservices.. That service can power your application or designed to power anyapplication. For example, imagine a mashup that pulls from a Twitter list andcombines it with another cloud service from Google Maps. We are just beginningto tap the possibilities.Even enterprises that are more tentative than consumers are adopting cloudservices to enable better collaboration across their base. Salesforce.com will likelylaunch Chatter, which will better share data with Twitter and Facebook. We useYammer a bunch internally, it’s at the point where we need one place to go withbetter filtering on microblogging social technologies. Applications like Tweetdeckwill help as well.Lastly, there’s a key factor that will keep cloud services ahead of the curve. That’sthe ease of change. Since these cloud services are accessed remotely, upgradingand changing the technology behind the services doesn’t require reaching intopeople’s computers—it all happens in one place at one time. This is a strength, butalso a caution for people taking advantage of cloud services. 7
Social brands demand the power of open APIsOpen APIs are catalysts for amazing growth. It may seem like eons ago, butremember this little phenomenon called blogging. What helped growth to skyrocketwas a very simple idea of an open API called RSS and ATOM that enabled sharingof lists of content. Without RSS and ATOM, we wouldn’t have blogs.Adding to that success is another simple idea, called microblogging, fueled in largepart by Twitter and its open API. The Twitter API has spawned over 50,000 differentapplications, with many more coming. Open APIs have always been the powerbehind innovation and will continue to be. Another great example is Facebook’sapplication API, enabling people to build applications on the Facebook platform.Look to 2010 to bring more and more commerce to the Facebook ecosystem withinnovations like Payvment’s shopping cart service, leveraging Facebook’s open API.Areas to watch out forBuilding on a cloud service is kind of like those trust exercises where you fallbackwards and someone catches you. We can all know what happens when thatperson looks away for a second. The point is to avoid depending on one service.Luckily there are many services to choose from, so in addition to FacebookConnect, consider Windows Live authentication service. The redundancy will helpinsulate you down the road.The same is true with cloud infrastructure. If you put everything on one serviceright now, there isn’t interoperability across vendors. This means weak businessnegotiation positioning and weak redundancy. When building Web applicationarchitectures, one of the core tenets is two of everything. Efforts like the CloudComputing Manifesto and companies like Rightscale will help keep you movingacross the cloud, but it’s not without forethought and planning.
Beware the FTC. With the wholesale changes to privacy that Facebook has beenmaking without helping users understand the implications, it won’t belong beforethe FTC steps in to try and fix things. That could mean trouble for cloud servicesusers. The point is for your site to be clear and transparent with users on how youare using their data, even if you don’t think they care.Lastly, be responsive to API upgrades, even if they happen without any notice.That means your development team needs to follow all the means that companiesuse to announce upgrades, whether it’s following the Facebook Connect blog orfollowing the Twitter API twits. This is critical—many sites have been burned whenTwitter changed their API. Be ready for those changes because they aren’t going toask your permission first.key predictions• Amazon will implement Facebook Connect on their site. See our message to Amazon about this.• Facebook Connect becomes more powerful than Facebook.com. Fewer people will go to Facebook.com because it’ll already be on your site. • Industry leading companies will leverage cloud services en masse in 2010.• Brand managers will use the language of cloud services and APIs pushing their IT departments to help them take their brands real time 9
Why the cloud infrastructureis crucial to your experienceTobias Klauder, VP Information Technology, Seattle& john cunningham, VP Technology, EuropeUnderstanding and adopting cloud infrastructure in 2010 will be a necessity toremain competitive in today’s business landscape. Razorfish has been workingwith most cloud infrastructure providers since their inception and is extremely well-positioned to help you realize the potential that cloud infrastructure offers.When speaking about cloud infrastructure, we are referring specifically to Infrastruc-ture As A Service (IAAS). Some industry-leading examples of IAAS are Amazon’sWeb Services (AWS), Terremark’s Enterprise Cloud and The Rackspace Cloud.The biggest reason that you should take a very hard look at when and where toleverage cloud infrastructure is that you can be sure that your competitors are.The most efficient IT operations boast a ratio of one administrator per 2,500 servers.For the vast majority of IT shops, the only way to achieve anywhere near thatlevel of efficiency is to leverage IAAS. While cloud infrastructure ROI will vary, youcan expect a savings of 25 to 60 percent over running the same infrastructureinternally. (Notably, many IAAS vendors are passing the same type of securityaudits (SAS 70 Type II for example) that previously were a barrier to consideringthese platforms.)Time to market is vital, and the ability to procure IAAS is an unprecedentedcapability for business. The ability to be agile and have reference and performanceenvironments that match production up and running quickly and efficiently are amajor advantage of cloud infrastructure. Long purchase and procurement cycles,installation of software, configuration and setup all take time and increase costseither in terms of additional license dollars or time or both.These tasks have been shortened from weeks or months into less than a day withthe arrival of cloud infrastructure. Innovation demands the ability to quickly procuresystems, and cloud infrastructure now makes this available at an unprecedentedlow price point. What’s even more appealing is that if you want more power, you 11
simply add it and only pay for what you use. If your requirements change, or thepeak passes you can auto scale down to normal or zero operating levels. Once thejob is done, you revert back to your baseline SLA and computing capacity.It’s worth noting that it is especially important for IT organizations to take thelead on understanding the various cloud offerings and helping their organizationsto leverage the opportunities. If employee’s start to utilize the cloud without IT’sinvolvement, it is likely the company as a whole will lack a comprehensive picture ofwhere data is stored, who is accessing it and lack the ability to ensure compliancewith policies.Amazon Web Services: Success storiesHere are a few recent examples of how a forward-thinking pharmaceutical, travel,and communications company have leveraged Amazon’s AWS cloud infrastructureofferings with great success.Power at your fingertipsA researcher at pharmaceutical giant Eli Lilly and Co. needed to analyse a lot ofdata quickly. If the results turned out, as he believed, the company could have aworld-beating drug on its hands.First the challenge, the researcher needed 25 servers to crunch the data, andhe knew it could take up to three months to get approval for the investment. Inan industry where the cost of delaying a product is high, $150 per second, threemonths’ wait would be very expensive. The researcher went to an IT guy who’dbeen playing around in this thing called ‘the cloud’. The guy got out his credit card,plugged it into Amazon Web Services, and had 25 servers up and running in thecloud within an hour.Within two hours, they were crunching the data. The research time had suddenlycollapsed from three months to hours. They completed the task and were given abill from Amazon for $89. At $150 per second, a three-month wait could have costmore than $1 billion.
The ability to be agileAs Virgin’s fleet of airliners takes off into the clouds, so does the company’snew Website: Vtravelled.com runs entirely on the Amazon Web Services cloud-computing platform. “We’ve undoubtedly saved a lot of time and money that we would normally havehad to spend on setting up, installing servers and maintaining servers,” says DaveTharp, head of development on the Vtravelled project. “In addition to this, we’venot had to deal with the headache of organizing the hardware – we can just log inand start up instances as and when we require them.”AWS also made ongoing development, testing and deployment much easier. “Wewere able to try out major configuration changes separate to the main site andthen switch over, with the ability to switch back, if necessary; normally this requiresthe purchase of a lot of additional physical hardware, which was not the case withAmazon Web Services.”Is your company ready to take advantage of cloud infrastructure? key predictions• Application partitioning (anyone remember Forte?) will make its return to technology architectures. Application partitioning and hybrid traditional/cloud solutions will enable more cloud adoption. • More business will be conducted through the cloud. Perhaps even stock trading will go through Facebook and Twitter. 13
Multi-Touch TransformsRetail in 2010Steven Dawson, technical lead, emerging experiences,atlanta & Luke Hamilton, creative/experience lead,emerging experiences, atlanta@razorfisheeEngaging a customer in a retail environment and delivering an exceptional in-storeexperience is becoming increasingly difficult. The use of interactive-touch technologyis an excellent way to attract the customer to the retail environment and deliver amulti-channel experience while guiding the customer through the purchase process.The reason behind the difficulties in reaching customers is that as the numberof product offerings grows, customers are being faced with increasingly complexbuying decisions.In addition, the customer experience takes place across multiple channels—manypurchasing decisions start with online research and end at the retail location.A recent Forrester report noted that less than two-thirds of consumers aresatisfied when researching product and services on a company’s Website and thenpurchasing in store.Driving TrafficDelivering simple and engaging interactive experiences is a great way to drive trafficin-store. Touch technology can be installed in storefronts and deliver simple anddelightful experiences that engage the customer. The use of motion sensors, camerasand augmented reality can quickly engage a shopper by delivering storefront experi-ences that react to movement and gestures.These types of experiences are quick and engaging, triggered simply by walking bya display. The goal is to grab the attention of the task-oriented shopper and drivethe customer into the store, online or to a mobile Website. 15
Recently, Razorfish installed an interactive touch experience in an abandonedstorefront in a mall to help drive traffic into the client’s store. This pilot program wasa huge success and the client saw a measurable lift in store traffic.Simplifying Buying DecisionsCustomers are being faced with increasingly complex buying decisions, especiallywith technology and services. As a result, increased pressure is being placed onstore associates to provide knowledgeable service to customers.Training store associates about these products and services can be expensive andineffective. In addition, the employee turnover rate in retail can have a negative effecton the number of knowledgeable store associates. In an assisted-sales scenario, thestore associates can focus on being brand ambassadors while the touch experienceprovides the information the customer needs to make informed decisions about theproducts or services.Our Emerging Experiences team developed the Razorfone application to demon-strate how an immersive multi-touch experience can assist customers and storeassociates with complex buying decisions in a retail setting.PersonalizationCustomers expect products and services to be personalized. It is important todeliver a retail experience that accommodates the customer desire to expressindividuality. Allowing customers to personalize and customize their product in thestore through the use of interactive touch experiences is one way to deliver on thepromise of personalization. An additional benefit of personalization is combatingbuyer’s remorse: A customer leaving a store with a personalized product is far lesslikely to return the product.An example of in-store personalization can be found at the recently launchedMicrosoft retail stores—customers can create personalized skins for their devicesthrough an in-store multi-touch experience.Extending InventoryRetailers can overcome the issue of limited shelf space by offering their customersa wide assortment of products through the use of interactive in-store technology.Touch experiences can help bring the online catalog into the retail environment.It is important for retailers to create immersive experiences that are “built for touch”
rather than simply running their pre-existing website in-store. Integration of printers,barcode scanners and QR technology can help streamline the purchase process.For instance, consider the scenario where a customer finds a clothing item thatfits perfectly but the retail location does not have the desired color. The customercan scan the barcode on the clothing item, select the desired color and print out asales slip to bring to the register for checkout. The product is then shipped directlyto the customer.Delivering Connected Multi-Channel ExperiencesCustomers are increasingly using their mobile device in-store to access ratings andreviews on products. Applications like ShopSavvy and RedLaser allow customersto quickly zap the barcode of a product and find ratings and reviews on their mobiledevice. Mobile devices are quickly becoming the “glue” that connects online andretail experiences. Retailers can capitalize on this trend by embracing touch andmobile technology to better integrate the online and retail shopping experiencesduring the customer experience journey.Touch experiences that offer value-added content, ratings, reviews and socialintegration can be used to assist customers with purchase decisions. Considerthe scenario where a customer is interested in purchasing a movie. However, thecustomer isn’t sure which one to choose. Integrating an in-aisle experience thatallows a customer to quickly scan the barcode on a product and access movietrailers, ratings from their favorite movie critics and recommendations on similarmovies can help the customer make the correct decision. Extending the experiencefurther, a customer could create a wish list in-store and send it out online via emailand SMS or download it to their mobile device using QR technology.key predictions• A nationwide retailer will have new multi-touch experiences in every store. Multi-touch experiences and seamless cross-channel integration are the future of retail. • Windows 7 will enable more multi-touch rollouts in public spaces.• Multi-touch experiences will be more fun, lift brand, engage customers and drive sales. 17
Mobile: You Say You Want aRevolution? You Got OnePaul Gelb, manager, emerging media, new york &Michael Scafidi, technology director, new yorkIn 2009, industry conferences and trade magazines were preoccupied with a heateddebate about a singular question: Has the iPhone finally ushered in the “Year ofMobile”?Arguments in favor cited countless usage and application production growth statistics.Conversely, arguments against described the iPhone as a fad due to its limitedmarket share and previous premature exaltations about mobile.Both sides of this debate are wrong. The narrowly focused logic obscured a slowconvergence of seemingly disparate technologies that, in aggregate, are driving thelatest in a series of technological revolutions.The impact of a mobile revolution has the potential to reverberate beyond cellphones, media and marketing to catalyze deep structural economic changes. Fol-lowing the pattern of the previous technology revolutions, including the computerrevolution and the internet revolution, businesses that leverage these new tech-nologies effectively and efficiently will be the greatest beneficiaries. However, firmsthat fail to adapt will become casualties of the disruptive change.Even though the iPhone is just a piece of the mobile revolution, it is undoubtedly asignificant innovation. The device, the software, the ecosystem it has created andits small yet rapid user adoption provide the model for new infrastructure and dem-onstrate how large an opportunity mobile can be for businesses.However, technology revolutions are often slow to develop, because they requirethe aggregation of technologies, development of new operational processes andnew ways to organize businesses.Despite the advances forged by the iPhone,significant technology challenges lingered. 19
MOBILE TECHNOLOGY-BASED CHALLENGESApplication developmentWhile some brands have developed and launched successful iPhone apps, manybusinesses have found developing mobile applications challenging. The iPhoneand iTouch market shares are still limited. It is expensive to develop for multiple OSplatforms and the amount of downloads on non-Apple devices is only a fraction ofthe downloads from iTunes. Apple’s application store is highly competitive as anyapplication must differentiate itself from over 100,000 other applications offered.Thus many applications with flawed concepts or user experiences fail to generateenough downloads to provide an attractive ROI on the production.Mobile WAP and browser developmentMany businesses have been reluctant to invest in mobile WAP or browser-optimizedsites. The recent growth in usage has coincided with the economic downturn andresources have been allocated elsewhere. A simple site can be developed inex-pensively. However, QA across all devices and updating content on an additionaldigital channel is time consuming and often costly.Recent radical mobile technology innovationshave removed limiting factors and broken downold assumptions...TECHNOLOGY-ENABLED REACH AMPLIFICATION AND COST REDUCTIONMobile is rapidly becoming more open, accessible and collaborative as technologyproviders are looking to drive growth through sharing and network effects insteadof monopolization.Open source rendering engineWebKit is used as the rendering engine within Safari on Windows, Mac OS Xand iPhone OS. New web browsers have been built around WebKit, includingPalm’s WebOS (Palm Pre being the first phone device to carry the OS), Symbian’sS60 on Nokia mobile phones and Google’s Chrome browser on the web and onAndroid PhonesActionScript 3-based native applicationsAdobe aims to empower device manufacturers, system-on-chip vendors, contentproviders, and service providers to deliver engaging experiences that runconsistently across desktops, mobile phones, and digital home and consumer
Internet programs for premium brands such as Yahoo, MTV and eBay, andleading agencies such as Razorfish and ad networks like AdMob. Globally,Netbiscuits delivers more than 1.5 billion mobile page impressions each month.Netbiscuits is available as a Web-based software service, which decreasesdevelopment time and costs. At www.netbiscuits.com all tools, interfaces andmobile-enabling technologies are provided to develop, publish, monitor andmonetize professional mobile Web services.The platform allows developers to bring content to mobile and create next generationmobile Websites and services with seamless integration of advertising, mediaand commerce features—easier, faster and more cost-efficient than ever before.Mobile Websites created by the Netbiscuits Developer Community range fromsimple advertising landing pages and micro sites to complex dynamic mobile Webportals with audio/video, social networking, mapping and commerce features.By leveraging new mobile technologies, creativebusinesses can generate unprecedented benefitsfrom mass consumer engagement on this uniquelyexperiential technology.BENEFITS FROM MASS MOBILE CONSUMER ENGAGEMENTMobile has finally delivered on the true promise of digital by removing physicalconstraints. Improved hardware and connectivity have transformed mobile devicesinto cloud-based universal remotes that allow for highly engaging interactions inreal time.Touch interfaceThe touch screen not only kicked off this revolution in mobility, but as mobile devicefunctionality becomes more malleable their inputs will as well. The touch screen isthe key to this flexible interface. It will continue to enable applications to innovatetheir interface. It allows the user to more directly interact with the content on thedevice and provides an adaptable interface for limited screen space.Connectivity to the cloudAlways-connected phones are continually reaching to the cloud to deliver con-text to the mobile user. In the cloud, information services are integrated to deliverinformation relevant to the user’s situation. Yahoo’s YQL (http://developer.yahoo.com/yql/) is making it easier to integrate these services and distribute them in a standardway. Integrating a users location from the phone with the real estate market, maps,Wikipedia entries and social networks will be powered by services such as this.Mobile cameraHigher quality cameras capable of five megapixels or higher resolution will notonly allow parents to take better pictures of their kids, they will empower shop-pers to compare prices while they are in the store. Applications like Red Laser
(http://redlaser.com/) utilize these better cameras to scan bar codes and reach outto the cloud to compare prices. Google Goggles (http://www.google.com/mobile/goggles/) uses pictures to search the web for landmarks and contacts as well forlogo recognition.Location and directionFor years mobile phones have had GPS and cellular triangulation to determinethe location of the phone, but recently manufacturers have been including digitalcompasses. The addition of a digital compass into phones is more than a tool fortechnophile Boy Scouts. The compass enables the phone to know what directionits camera is facing. Wikitude (http://www.wikitude.org/) was the first mainstreammobile application to utilize the compass found in the G1 for augmented reality. Asthis functionality becomes standardized pedestrians will commonly look throughtheir cameras at storefronts to see what sales are individually available to them.Key mobile statistics demonstrating that the mobile revolution has begun• 100,000 applications offered on iTunes as of 09/2009• 57 million iPhone and iPod touch units sold as of 09/2009• 3 billion number of applications download through iTunes as of 01/2010• 3% of shoppers used their phone to make a purchase on Black Friday 2009• 20% of shoppers intended on using their phone to shop during the 2009 holiday season• 40% of smart phone owners made non-mobile content related purchases in 2009Key statistics of brands successfully using mobile• $500 million estimated spend by shoppers on mobile application in 2009• $1 million in sales for Pizza Hut through their iPhone application in 2009• 50% of Pandora’s 80,000 daily registered user acquisitions were from mobile in 2009• 4 of the top 10 iPhone games were developed by EAkey predictions• Geo-triggered SMS platforms will enable delivery of messages based on the user’s time and location, significantly increasing the relevance of message• Cloud computing and augmented reality APIs will exponentially increase the amount and types of information that can be delivered through mobile devices. 23
Feeling Agile: in 2010, its timehas finally come for good. John Ewen, Program director, New York &Ray Velez, Chief technology officer, new york2010 is going to bring about a renewed focus on continuous innovation and busi-ness benefit, lowering costs with distributed teams and better collaboration withexperience, creative, technology. Razorfish’s Agile is ready to show the way.Agile is built for business benefit and continuous innovationAgile and iterative Web development was built to solve business issues by focusingon enabling change and learning from real world feedback.Commonly used waterfall processes assumed that the business would stop changeswhen development entered the design process. That’s why commonly usedprocesses fail—they require business and product owners to lock in decisionsbefore they start using the technology. It’s an outdated approach based on rigidmanufacturing and not digital flexibility and unknowns.Assuming that innovation stops after the concept and design phase, this approachlocks your business and users away from your product during the build phase.What is needed for success is an iterative ongoing process, taking a hard look atthe concept and product as designed and continuously innovating.Business priorities change as users get their hands on your digital products.Incorporating those changes back into the product as soon as possible builds trustwith your consumers and creates opportunities for innovation. Often, it’s a difficultreality to swallow, but nothings speaks more loudly than real world analytics. Withstudies from respected companies like The Standish Group are showing that 64percent of designed functionality rarely or never gets used, it’s easy to see that thebig bang approach to building digital products wastes a lot of time and money. 25
Following an iterative approach enables our focus on the highest priority items inevery release with the goal that we never get to the lowest impact, 64 percent. Aconstantly changing product backlog will ensure we are continuously reprioritizing.Agile has its roots in constantly improving and innovative processes shown to besuccessful by companies like Toyota and their “Kanban” system. Traditional soft-ware-development processes expect a document to mean the end of innovation,basically send the document over the wall and hope for the best. Agile processeshave at their heart communication and people. Agile’s four simple principles solvebusiness needs: Individuals and interactions over processes and tools Focus on the ability to communicate and review work as opposed to getting document signoffs. Traditional processes assume rigid change order processes and documentation. Agile focuses on constant communication over working software as opposed to low business value documentation. Working software over comprehensive documentation Since communication is at the heart of Agile, comprehensive documentation isn’t needed. Light documentation with constant communcation will enable more business value and ability to change. While some documentation is always needed, focus on what is absolutely necessary as opposed to detailed documentation that is out of date before it’s published. Customer collaboration over contract negotiation This does require extensive customer involvement, but that’s a lot more useful focus than haggling over whether a feature was in the original statement of work. With Agile, the customer is prioritizing all potential features at the beginning of every sprint. Agile won’t build all the features on the list and that is the value. Why build the 64 percent of features that are never used? Responding to change over following a plan By breaking up what traditionally would be a six- to nine-month detailed design and development process into one- to three-week sprints the process allows for drastic changes in direction. A good example of this is a project we did for Ford Motor Co. At the beginning of the project, one of the key features was
responding to high gas prices that soon become a lower priority because of the falling economy. Using Agile, we were able to respond to that change without building a wasted set of features around high gas prices.Lowering cost and making it work with distributedteams and offshore developmentWhile everyone would like to have the entire team in one room, it’s not possiblethese days. One reason that teams often need to work from distributed locationsis the increasing need to leverage the lower rates charged by developers in otherparts of the world. Global delivery and offshore certainly has its cost benefits, butthere are other reasons why distributed teams are needed. Computer sciencegraduation rates have slowly been decreasing over the last 10 years and the needshave not been shrinking accordingly. That’s only part of your team, with business,user experience, creative and delivery all likely to be in multiple locations.Using a process that affords enough communication to ensure success is required.For teams that are attempting to take advantage of the many benefits of Scrum*while also trying to meet offshoring targets, these initiatives may at first appearto be at odds with one another. However, when you consider some of the mostimportant components of successful offshore relationships, the principals of Scrumalign very well. Communicate, communicate, communicate The first thing many project managers will point to when discussing working with offshore teams are ways to stay in touch as continually as possible. E-mail, IM, video conferencing, conference calls and collaboration tools all have their role, but at their core needs to be clear communication in which everyone on the team knows what they need to do and everyone else knows what they are doing. Two core tenets of Scrum that help tremendously in these areas are the sprint backlog and the daily stand-up. An updated sprint backlog, preferably hosted so a real-time version is available to all team members at all times, keeps the entire team up to date on what everyone else is working on. Not only does this help from a management perspective but also helps the team know exactly who to contact to troubleshoot problems, offer assistance or take over work if other issues or needs arise.Scrum is a set of guidelines and processes for managing complex projects oftenused in Agile development. 27
The daily stand-up, possibly the most borrowed component of Scrum, gives theteam the chance to not only know what everyone is currently working on, butwhat was accomplished the previous day, what the members of the team haveplanned and if there is anything preventing them from completing their work.Ensure that requirements are clear, work is reviewed frequently and thatissues are resolved quicklyHand in hand with communication is ensuring that rapidly changingrequirements are understood by the team at all times. Waiting fordocumentation to be updated or waiting for time with the stakeholdersto communicate changes to everyone involved often comes at theexpense of development efficiency.Sprint Planning at the beginning of each sprint or iteration ensures that theteam has the time not only to plan the work that will achieve the desired outcomes, but also gives the team time with the Product Owner to clarifyrequirements and solve potential issues early.Another risk associated with working with offshore resources is potentiallynot knowing the quality of the work until it is completed—when it’s too late.Scrum not only divides the development cycle into small enough units to helpmitigate this risk, but it also provides within its core processes a way to handlethose situations upon review of functionality. If the acceptance criteria is notmet, the issue is returned to the backlog to be addressed in the next sprint.When the approach isn’t working, change itSuccessful project approaches maintain enough flexibility to change overtime to leverage new findings and team strengths. This is especially truewhen working with offshore resources when the developers may be new tothe organization or process. Scrum provides recurring reviews of not onlythe work, but the process.Sprint Retrospectives allow the team to highlight what is working welland what needs improvement. These improvements, when they can beimplemented, can have an enormous impact on the team’s productivity.Changes can bring about a better way to accomplish something, butthey can also significantly raise morale when team members know thatfeedback is valuable.
Solutions to these common challenges can be found through a variety ofapproaches, methodologies and processes. However, avoiding using Agilemethods such as Scrum when the team is distributed around the world is notnecessary. In fact, it might turn out to be the best option available.Aligning user experience, creative anddevelopment - the Razorfish Agile approachAligning Design and DevelopmentThe Razorfish Agile approach is a recommendation for incorporating the Agilemethodology within a consulting-based project framework. It allows for a periodof project definition and contract negotiation, a visioning phase where the projectstrategy is defined and finally, the iterations for designing and building the product.The following diagram represents a sample schedule for these activities:During the Foundation sprint, while the core technology tasks are being performed(infrastructure code, environment set-up, etc.), the design team is establishingthe visual design language and sketching the wireframes that correspond to the agile build phase sow phase Visioning phase 4 week sprints 1-4 weeks 6-12 weeks foundation sprint 1 sprint 2 sprint x 29
highest prioritized user stories. This allows the design team to establish theheadstart needed to ensure that the build team has the elements needed forsubsequent sprints. Maintaining this pace produces the desired cycle of designleading development but allowing development to influence design.Iterative DesignOne of the biggest challenges of adopting an iterative project process is removingenough of the traditional patterns to realize all benefits. The ability to “release earlyand often” requires that the product be able to provide value at stages previouslyconsidered “incomplete.” In other words, if the outcome of a sprint requires addi-tional sprints before the product functions, then you may not ultimately release anyearlier. One part of the process that must adapt to prevent this from happening isthe product design.Products are designed with a particular end state in mind. They adhere to a visionof ultimate value. But what happens when the vision changes, the product mustrelease earlier or the project loses funding? The approach used to reach that visionwill largely define the success of the project. Ideally, the sequence of the productdesign activities will allow the work that has been completed to remain viable.When a product is designed in phases, related features typically are grouped anddesigned concurrently. But if you can’t release a product with only one phase com-plete then you’re committing the process to a lack of interruption that might notbe sustainable. But what if that phase stretched across all critical features? Thisapproach allows the product to be released at the completion of any phase. The fullvision of functionality will not yet be realized, but it can be added over time.In the spirit of Steve McConnell’s “Cone of Uncertainty,” we’ll refer to this processas the Cone of Complexity. When the product is divided from simplest tomost complex, rather than by feature, the benefits of an iterative process canreally materialize.
simplest desired functional intermediate end state state stateThe clearest benefit to this approach is that features are more likely to be com-pleted by the end of a sprint. This allows for several highly desired benefits:1. Ability to release early.2. Ability to release more frequently.3. Ability to test the product with users in time to influence subsequent design cycles.4. Opportunity to evolve the vision of the product as functionality comes to life.5. Opportunity to only build what is valuable instead of what is designed.This last benefit is really the culmination of the others. When a product can beused, tested, refactored and conform to an evolving vision, then the likelihood ofonly building what users need and want increases substantially.key predictions• Agile will push businesses to think of software development as a solution to innovation.• There will be greater Agile adoption by offshore development shops, enabling global distributive development. 31
tweetthis now! Technology is a game changer – not just an enabler. If you’re a CMO, you’re embracing this simple truth or preparing for another career. The technologies discussed in this report are leading the way t0 business transformation in 2010 and beyond. Based on the findings of Razorfish 5, Razorfish predicts the following: Cloud services will be everywhere • Amazon will implement Facebook Connect on their site. See our message to Amazon about this. • Facebook Connect becomes more powerful than Facebook.com. Fewer people will go to Facebook.com because it’ll already be on your site. • Industry leading companies will leverage cloud services en masse in 2010. • Brand managers will use the language of cloud services and APIs pushing their IT departments to help them take their brands real time The cloud will be a crucial business tool • Application partitioning (anyone remember Forte?) will make its return to technology architectures. Application partitioning and hybrid traditional/cloud solutions will enable more cloud adoption. • More business will be conducted through the cloud. Perhaps even stock trading will go through Facebook and Twitter. Multi-touch will transform retail • A nationwide retailer will have new multi-touch experiences in every store. Multi-touch experiences and seamless cross-channel integration are the future of retail. • Windows 7 will enable more multi-touch rollouts in public spaces. • Multi-touch experiences will be more fun, lift brand, engage customers and drive sales. Mobile will continue its revolution • Geo-triggered SMS platforms will enable delivery of messages based on the user’s time and location, significantly increasing the relevance of message • Cloud computing and augmented reality APIs will exponentially increase the amount and types of information that can be delivered through mobile devices. Agile will boost innovation • Agile will push businesses to think of software development as a solution to innovation. • There will be greater Agile adoption by offshore development shops, enabling global distributive development. Technology is innovating rapidly, and we encourage you to continue learning how these advances will impact your business. A great place to start would be a conversation with Razorfish’s Chief Technology Officer Ray Velez, @rvelez on Twitter. In the meantime, get ready for more transformation.
About RazorfishRazorfish creates experiences that build businesses. As one of the largest interactive marketing andtechnology companies in the world, Razorfish helps its clients build better brands by delivering businessresults through customer experiences. Razorfish combines the best thought leadership of the consultingworld with the leading capabilities of the marketing services industry to support our clients’ businessneeds, such as launching new products, repositioning a brand or participating in the social world. Witha demonstrated commitment to innovation, Razorfish continues to cultivate our expertise in SocialInfluence Marketing, emerging media, creative design, analytics, technology and user experience.Razorfish has offices in markets across the United States, and in Australia, China, France, Germany,Japan, Spain and the United Kingdom. Clients include Carnival Cruise Lines, MillerCoors, Levi Strauss& Co., McDonald’s and Starwood Hotels. Razorfish is part of the Publicis Groupe (Euronext Paris:FR0000130577) VivaKi organization. Visit razorfish.com for more information. Follow Razorfish on Twitterat @razorfish.For Additional Information: Media Inquiries: Thought Leadership:Raymond Velez Katie Lamkin Lauren NguyenChief Technology Officer Public Relations Marketing Communications+1 212.798.6610 +1 312.696.5241 +1 firstname.lastname@example.org email@example.com firstname.lastname@example.org@rvelez @ktlamkin @ltnguyentechnologies.razorfish.com Design: http://www.fresh-sf.comUnited States Europe Asia/Pacific@razorfish neue-digitale.com Hong Kong +852 3102 4512Atlanta +1 678.538.6000 @neuedigitale Shanghai +86 21 5237 8811Austin +1 512.532.2000 Berlin +49 (0) 30 2936388 0Chicago +1 312.696.5000 Frankfurt +49 (0) 69 704030 amnesia.com.auLos Angeles +1 310.846.5400 @amnesiafishNew York +1 212.798.6600 London +44 020 7907 4545 Sydney +61 2 9380 9317Philadelphia +1 267.295.7100 @razorfishlondonPortland +1 503.423.2900 dentsu-razorfish.comSan Francisco +1 415.369.6300 wysiwyg.net Tokyo +81 3 5551 9885Seattle +1 206.816.8800 Madrid +34 91 308 11 30 Osaka +81 6 6360 1461 duke-interactive.com @dukerazorfish Paris +33 (0) 1 53 44 19 00