What is a project discovery?
Definition: A project discovery is an initial phase in the project development process that involves researching and gathering information about a project to better understand its scope, goals, vision, and requirements.
During the project discovery, the cross-functional project team will conduct research and gather information about the project, including its goals, target audience, and any constraints or limitations. The team will also identify and engage stakeholders, including project sponsors, users, and subject matter experts, to gather input and feedback on the project.
After the project discovery phase has been completed, the project planning phase can start.
Steps of a project discovery phase
- Define the project scope by identifying the business objectives, desired outcomes, and the boundaries and limitations of the project.
- Gather and analyze data relevant to the project by conducting stakeholder interviews, performing market research, reviewing existing documents and data, and gathering input from subject matter experts.
- Identify risks and constraints that may impact the project's success. This includes identifying resources that can be required, such as budget, personnel, and equipment, and any external factors that can impact the project, like regulatory requirements or market conditions.
- Develop a high-level plan that outlines key activities and milestones of the project based on the information gathered during the project discovery phase. This plan should provide a clear overview of the project and its objectives and should be used to guide the project planning process.
- Present the project discovery findings to stakeholders. This presentation should include a summary of the business objectives, desired outcomes, and potential risks and constraints identified during the project discovery phase.
Example of a project discovery phase
Here is an example of the project discovery phase for a project to develop a new mobile app:
Define the project scope: Developing a new mobile app for a fashion retail company to increase customer engagement and sales. The app will include features such as a product catalog, a virtual fitting room, and a loyalty program.
Gather and analyze data: Conducting market research to understand the needs and preferences of the target audience and the competitive landscape. Obtaining input from subject matter experts, including designers and developers, to identify the technical requirements and constraints of the project.
Identify risks and constraints: The need for a dedicated budget, personnel, and regulatory requirements for mobile app development and data privacy.
Develop a high-level plan:
- Hiring a good app development agency
- Developing UX and UI design
- Usability testing
Present the project discovery findings: The project team presents the findings to key stakeholders, which then provide feedback and approve the plan to move forward with the project.