● Project Dirt is looking for an individual to lead on the definition and delivery of the new version of our platform.
● This individual should be comfortable with modern digital product development practices, be technically competent, and ideally be able to deliver production-ready wireframes (for a full specification, see below).
● The re-development of the platform is intended to mark a new phase of Project Dirt, where the hallmarks of a successful digital business begin to be embedded in the organisation.Background
● Project Dirt connects community projects with local people and companies who want to help them to achieve their goals and join their story. Together we harness the power of business to accelerate a grassroots revolution in local communities everywhere!
● The existing platform hosts over 3,500 environmental and social projects. However, it was developed 5 years ago, and - in classic software development fashion - overran on time and budget. Since then, the platform has been enhanced to a degree, but has largely remained untouched.
● We have nearly completed a functional specification for the re-design project. However, this has been done without any formal ‘discovery’ or ‘definition’ phases, and without the support of digital experts.
● As such, we are looking for an individual to help us cherry-pick the highest value-giving activities typically used when defining a digital project, deliver these activities, and (ideally) support with delivery.
Summary of brief:
● We need this individual to help us restart development as soon as possible by changing our functional specification into a prioritised product backlog of user stories.
● Given we didn’t undergo a formal discovery process, we anticipate that some activities normally in this phase would be worthwhile, and have included a potential task list below.
● However, we recognise that different consultants work in different ways, so we are open to shaping this brief and task list together. As such, the below should act as a starting point, rather than a list of deliverables.
● That said, we would like to have production-ready wireframes within 4 weeks of beginning our work together. We recognise this is tight, but we believe doing so will help us focus on doing only the highest-value activities.
● We recognise some of this won’t be easy, so there will be flexibility on how, when and even if some of this is delivered. In short, we’re looking to build an open and trusting relationship with an experienced hand, who can help us on the next stage of our digital journey.
● Someone who will quickly be able to spot gaps in the team and work quickly to help us fill them, or find alternative solutions
● Finally, throughout all of this there is a need to begin to build legacy within the organisation - both tangibly (e.g. actively help recruit a team), and intangibly (by slowly up-skilling the team on how digital platform development should be done).
This individual should tick as many of these boxes as possible:
● Has defined and delivered several digital products/platforms (as a product owner, product manager or strategist).
● Is comfortable and can deliver tasks typical to a User Experience Researcher and User Experience Designer.
● Is technically proficient (i.e. has a rough idea of how long things take to build). Bonus points if you can code.
● Is comfortable with data and metrics (both defining, and interpreting).
● Has worked on Agile software projects.
● Is fully comfortable with modern digital product practices (e.g. Lean, customer-centricity, hypothesis-driven development), and can be the champion of these within the organisation.
Our current team (relevant to this project) is comprised of:
● Martin Warne (Senior Developer): Full-stack Django developer, Digital lead for DoNation. Scoped the initial Functional Specification document.
● Eugenio Galioto (Developer): Django developer, recently joined the team.
● Nick Gardner (CEO): Co-founder of Project Dirt, who oversaw the development of the last iteration of our platform (PDv2) in 2012.
● Andrew Birley (Head of Operations): Support for all operational needs (e.g. budget, recruitment). Familiar with Agile software development practices and has had reasonable levels of exposure to design and build projects.
● James Dowdell (Head of Client Campaigns): Helped Martin scope out the overview requirements for the platform.
We have a further team of six project managers delivering community-facing work for corporate clients.
Please also note that we’re currently engaging a rebranding exercise with creative agency Nice and Serious. Outputs include a new visual identity, and re-naming.
● As mentioned above, we would like to begin operating as a digitally mature business, including hallmarks such as:
○ Focusing on metrics that matter
○ Releasing early and often
○ Using data to guide and iterate
○ Decisions being made by a cross-functional team
○ Remaining both goal-focused and customer-centric
○ Using Agile software development
● We recognise that these modes of working both take time to develop, and sometimes can be very difficult to attain. However, we would like to begin to adopt the tools and processes of some of these as soon as possible.
● URL: http://www.projectdirt.com/
● Traffic: c. 60k sessions/year (and aiming for much higher with new platform)
● Language: Python (Django framework)
● [Client-facing website: www.workwithdirt.com]Proposed task list
As mentioned above, it is important to note that this task list is a draft recommendation. We are happy to adapt this as you see fit, based on your previous experience.
Each task has an estimated days required to deliver, which has been suggested by an advisory Product Owner. Again, these are only meant as an initial recommendation, and we expect them to be revised.
● Goals and metrics:
○ Review/set goals and key metrics – 0.5 - 1 days
○ Review current performance vs key metrics – 0.5 - 1 days
● Documentation: Core documentation on users and product (e.g. personas, problem scenarios, hypotheses) – 0.5 - 1 days
● Backlog creation: Convert the existing spec into user-centric backlog on collaborative platform (e.g. Jira), providing expert advice to adjust the backlog as necessary – 1 - 3 days
● UX basics: Review/define information architecture and user journeys as you see fit – 0.5 - 2 days
● UX design: Support progression to production-ready designs, in a way you see fit (e.g. lo-fi wires > hi-fi wire > templates; or lo-fi wires + UI kit and straight to dev) – 3 - 10 days
Potential additional tasks:
● Ongoing support: Provide ongoing, weekly support to help deliver the product, and continue to up-skill the team on key methods and ways of working – TBC days
● Primary research: Conduct primary research of some kind to help redevelopment decisions (e.g. problem interviews, over-the-shoulder testing of current platform, testing prototypes, stakeholder interviews) – TBC days
● Vision: Customer journey mapping (or another tool) to build a vision of the future product – 1 - 2 days
● Funding and budget: Propose and define a budget for the first phase of the project, and avise on ongoing funding needs – 1 - 2 days
● Recruitment: Support recruitment of other team members (e.g. freelance designer) – TBC days
● Technology: Support/input into technology select and architecture – TBC daysNext steps
Please contact [email protected] by 9am on Monday 12th February 2018 indicating:
● Which elements of the brief you feel comfortable (and not comfortable) delivering - (i.e. a rough overview of strengths/weaknesses) - providing examples where possible.
● How (if at all) you would edit the brief or proposed task list. (We recognise you would be doing so on limited information, so this is not essential).
● Availability and day rate.
Please do not spend too long on this reply. We’ll be shortlisting a few candidates to come in and speak to us, where we can discuss most of this in more detail.
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