How To Write A Good Project Brief For Application Development?

The project brief serves as a starting point for any application development. It helps software development companies to understand the client’s goals, general requirements and propose the best solution. The more detailed your brief is, the higher the chance to get an accurate quote and achieve a better outcome.

Working with different types of businesses, including startups and growing companies, we’ve been able, to sum up, the best practices for creating a good project brief.

Before describing the elements it should include, let’s define what is a project brief and why it’s important to IT service providers?

What is a project brief?

The project brief is a relatively short document outlining the idea of your project. It is common in many industries, especially in those where planning is an essential part of the working process.

By having a piece of general information about your current business objectives, things you want to accomplish, problems you want to solve, your target audience, technical and functional preferences, etc., vendors can propose suitable engagement model and form the right development team.

Note, that there is a difference between a brief and specification document. While the first one outlines the main idea of the project, the specification is a detailed document providing all the requirements for software development.  

Begin with the overview

You should begin your brief with the big picture of the project. Shortly describe what your business or startup is about.

Explain the role of application in your general business strategy and what do you expect to achieve.

Provide some information about your audience and competitors as it may be valuable for design, delivery and final user testing.

List the features

If you already have an idea of the features you want to implement, list them in priority order or divide into two separate sections – what is must have and what is nice to have.

This will help developers to understand which elements of the project are crucial, and which can be developed in the future.

The common practice, when creating a new product is to start with MVP, shape the initial concept based on real user feedback and then go to additional features.

It is ok though if you don’t have a clear idea or the project is complex. In KeyToTech, for instance, we use time and material approach, which suits best for such cases.

Remember to provide any designs, sketches, wireframes, logos, everything that helps to illustrate your vision.

Technical requirements

At this point, you don’t need to deep into dive into technical specifications. However, in order to help developers define a tech stack, provide some related information.

For example: Which devices your app should run on? Do you want to build a product from scratch or redesign/complete existing software? Does it require data synchronization? Should your application work offline? Do you need integration with external services/databases? Such aspects are very useful for evaluating the complexity of the project.

Timeline and Budget

Another significant element of the brief is whether you have desired timeframes for project delivery. It’s also helpful to provide a clear indication of your budget.

This information gives programmers an idea of what can be achieved by that means.

If you’re developing an application for the first time, it can be hard to figure out how much resources do you need.

Take a look at our fixed time and price options for high-quality products on an MVP stage.

To sum up

Writing a project brief doesn’t have to be complicated. However, a well thought-out piece of information will serve as a good roadmap for future development. So be specific and make sure the software vendor will clearly understand the idea of your project.

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