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What are React Component Lifecycle Methods

React is the most popular JavaScript library used to create interactive UI for web applications. It is a component-based library where different parts of a webpage can be encapsulated by components which are quite easy to create, manage and update. React allows us to create Single Page Applications which maintain the state of individual components on an app without having to reload it.  What are React Components? Developers who are new to JavaScript libraries and frameworks like React and Angular might ask the question, “What is a component?” Well, in very simple words, a component is a unit of code which includes JavaScript and HTML to build a part of a web page. It acts like a custom HTML element. It is reusable and can be as complex as you want it to be. For example, imagine that you are creating a very basic application with header, footer, and body. The header can be a component; the footer can be another component and the body can be yet another one or even might consist of multiple components.One of the most useful characteristics of React is its ability to integrate reusable components in a project. Reusability is the characteristic of a component which allows it to be used again, thereby reducing the amount of code a developer has to write. In our example here, the header can be a reusable component and can be used on all the pages of the application, which makes it easy to maintain and update. What does a component look like? Here is a simple example of a react component which contains a simple form. This is a class-based component. React also supports function-based components. As you can see in the code below, App is a user-defined class which inherit from React’s Component class and it has a render method which returns HTML code. As the name suggests, the render method returns and renders HTML to our browser. Every component has to return HTML which is rendered to the user’s browser by render method.import React, { Component } from 'react';  class App extends Component {    handleChange(event) {      this.setState({value:});    }    render() {      return (                              Username:                                            Password:                                              );    }  }    export default App; In the above example, we have created a login form where there are 2 input boxes for the user to enter their username and password and then submit the form. We have assigned an event handler to form which will handle the login event in component.We have exported our component (using export default App) so that it can be rendered inside other components.This is a very basic example of component, but this can be as complex as you want it to be. But it is always advised to make your component independent and it should represent only a part of your page which can be reusable as well. It can return complex HTML included with JavaScript to handle complex features in your application.Component as a class React allows us to create component in the form of class as well as functions. While creating component as class you need to define a class which extends React.Component class. Component class has many features which the deriving class can use to maintain the state throughout the lifecycle. In case you want to have more custom features, you can create your own base component class which derives from Component class, and then your component classes can derive from your base component class. What do we mean by Component Lifecycle?Lifecycle of a component is the set of different stages (also known as lifecycle hooks) a component goes through while it is active. Stages could be when a component is created or when any changes are made to the component and many others. There are different methods executed by React at different points of time between when a component is created and at the end when it is destroyed and not in use. One such hook or method we have already seen in the code above, which is render(), and it is executed by React to render the component. We can override these methods and perform certain tasks in those methods, but every lifecycle serves a different purpose and it can be a nightmare if we ask them to do something that they aren’t supposed to or are not very good at. As a developer we should be aware of what those different stages are, what happens in those stages, in what order they execute and how we can make the best use of it. Understanding the lifecycle of components also helps us predict behavior of a component at different stages, which makes it easier to work with them. Managing a large set of components in an application can get you in trouble if you do not know how they work behind the scenes.Props and State Before we start with lifecycle hooks, lets understand what props and state are as they are most commonly used properties in component classes. Props It is a keyword which means properties. Props are used by callers of components to pass properties to the called component in a uni-directional flow. For example, if Parent component renders child component, it can define props and pass them to the child component which is then available and accessible by this.props. Another thing to note here is that props is a ready-only attribute which means data which is passed by parent should not be changed by client components. State State is a plan JavaScript object which defines the current state of any component. It is user defined and can be changed by lifecycle hooks. Ideally state should contain only data which is going to be rendered on DOM. State has getter and setter methods this.getState() and this.setState() which as the names suggest are used to access and update State. It is good practice to use setState method to update State and treat State as an immutable JavaScript object.Since there are many lifecycle hooks a component goes through, it would easier to understand if we start with the hooks which are executed when a component is created.Lifecycle hooks while Mounting [These lifecycle hooks are executed in order as listed, when a component is created]constructor(props) This is not a component lifecycle hook, but it is important to mention here and to be aware that Constructor is executed before it is mounted. Constructor receives props(properties of a component) as an argument which then can be passed to base class using super keyword if we define the constructor.  It is not mandatory to define constructor in component class, but if you do to perform any logic, then you need to call base constructor using super keyword.  Mainly constructors are used: To Setup local state of component with this.state To bind event handler methods. This is what a simple constructor would look like.import React, { Component } from 'react';  class App extends Component {    constructor(props) {      super(props);      this.state = { value: 0 };      this.handleClick = this.handleClick.bind(this);    }  } this.state should be called only inside constructor, to update the state in other methods use this.setState() method.  If constructor is required to do any heavy tasks, it will impact the performance of component, and you should be aware of this fact.  getDerivedStateFromProps(props, state) After constructor, this lifecycle hook is called before render method is executed. It is called while mounting as well as whenever props have changed. This is not very commonly used, only in cases where props can change, and you need to update state of the component. This is the only use case where you should implement this lifecycle hook.This method is executed on every render and cannot access component instance.import React, { Component } from 'react';  class App extends Component {    getDerivedStateFromProps(props, state) {      if (props.value !== state.prevValue) {        return {          prevValue: props.value        };      }      return null;    }    }render() This is the method which is required to be implemented in component class. It can access props and state. This is where you can write your html and jsx code. You can also render child components in this method which will then be rendered as well. Before completing the lifecycle of parent, lifecycle of all child components will be finished. All this html and jsx is then converted to pure html and outputs in DOM. JSX is a JavaScript extension which creates React elements. It looks more like template language but it is empowered by JavaScript which allows it to do a lot more. It can embed expressions . JSX has different set of attributes than what we have in html. For example, while creating html using JSX you need to use attribute “className” instead of class. This is what a typical render method looks like:import React, { Component } from 'react';   class App extends Component {   render() {         return (        Click to go Home { this.state.home }       Go to Home         );   } } Alternatively you can also use React.createElement() method to create html using JSX.const element = React.createElement(       'h1',       {className: 'hello'},       'Hello, world!'     );componentDidMount() As the name suggests, componentDidMount() is invoked after the component is mounted, which means html has been added to DOM tree. It is a very commonly used lifecycle hook, as it allows you to do a lot of things including causing side-effects, setting up any subscriptions, or loading data from external endpoints. If you setup any subscription using this method, make sure to unsubscribe them in componentWillUnmount() lifecycle hook. You shouldn’t update state in this method using this.State() as it may cause performance issues. For assigning initial state you should use constructor(). import React, { Component } from 'react';  class App extends Component {    componentDidMount(){    // Component is rendered and now external calls can be made.      this.getDataAfterTimeOut();    }    getDataAfterTimeOut(){      setTimeout(() => {        this.setState({          data: 'Data is fetched'        })      }, 1000)    }  } Lifecycle hooks while Updating [Next set of lifecycle hooks are executed while a component is updating which can be caused by changes to props(properties) or state of component. These are invoked in order as listed below.] getDerivedStateFromProps(props, state) We have already talked about this. This is invoked every time a component is changed or updated. Any changes in properties or state which causes the component to be changed will invoke this method. shouldComponentUpdate(nextProps, nextState) shouldComponentUpdate() is invoked before rendering (not on initial rendering) but only when props or state has been changed. Even though it is not recommended you can use this lifecycle hook to control the re-rendering. This can lead to performance issues as well as bugs, so be careful while doing that.  In this method nextProps can be compared with this.props and nextState can be compared with this.state. This method can return true or false depending on whether you want to continue rendering by skipping the next lifecycle hooks. In either case it can’t prevent re-rendering of child components. Note that this method defaults to true which will not skip rendering and next lifecycle hooks and continue with execution. import React, { Component } from 'react';  class App extends Component {    shouldComponentUpdate(nextProps, nextState) {  // This value will determine if lifecycle execution is to be skipped or continued.      return nextProps.value != this.props.value;    }  } render() After shouldComponentUpdate lifecycle hook render is called, which we have already talked about, it prepares html and jsx code which then outputs to DOM. getSnapshotBeforeUpdate() getSnapshotBeforeUpdate() is invoked right before the recent changes are added to DOM. This lifecycle hook gives us an opportunity to capture any details we need from the DOM before it is updated with new content. For example, if you want to know the scrolling position of the user, which should be restored after the DOM has changed. Use cases for this lifecycle, while rare, can be of great value at times. The snapshot value which is captured and returned by this hook is passed as a parameter to another lifecycle hook componentDidUpdate() which we will talk about next. import React, { Component } from 'react';  class App extends Component {    getSnapshotBeforeUpdate (prevProps, prevState) {  // implementing this method here allows us to capture the snapshot of current dom tree.      if (this.state.value != prevState.value) {        return table.scrollHeight - table.scrollTop      }      return null    }  }componentDIdUpdate(prevProps, prevState, snapshot) componentDidUpdate is invoked when DOM is updated. It is only called on update, not on initial rendering. You can use this method to make data requests after checking if props have changed. You can also call setSatate() in this method, but make sure to wrap that in a condition else it will cause an infinite loop forcing re-rendering and affecting performance issues. Also it should be noted that value for snapshot will only be available if you have implemented getSnapshotBeforeUpdate() in your component; else value for snapshot will be undefined. Here is an example of componentDidUpdate. This is a very basic example where we have captured snapshot by implementing get Snapshot Before Update lifecycle hook. After that componentDidUpdate is invoked and content is overwritten with new dataimport React, { Component } from 'react';  class App extends Component {    getSnapshotBeforeUpdate(prevProps, prevState) {  // implementing this method here allows us to capture the snapshot of current dom tree.      document.getElementById("divContent").innerHTML =      "Before the update content is " + prevState.content;    }    componentDidUpdate(prevProps, prevState, snapshot) {  // You can access snapshot here to get data from dom before it was updated.      document.getElementById("divContent").innerHTML =      "New content updated " + this.state.content;    }  } import React, { Component } from 'react';  class App extends Component {    getSnapshotBeforeUpdate(prevProps, prevState) {  // implementing this method here allows us to capture the snapshot of current dom tree.      document.getElementById("divContent").innerHTML =      "Before the update content is " + prevState.content;    }    componentDidUpdate(prevProps, prevState, snapshot) {  // You can access snapshot here to get data from dom before it was updated.      document.getElementById("divContent").innerHTML =      "New content updated " + this.state.content;    }  } UnMounting [This is where lifecycle of a component ends when component is destroyed and removed from DOM. While Unmounting React gives us an opportunity to do something before component is destroyed, it can include clearing objects which have occupied memory to avoid memory leaks.] componentWillUnMount() componentWIllUnMount() is executed right after component is unmounted which means it is removed from DOM and destroyed. But before it is removed and destroyed, React gives us an opportunity to perform any cleanup we want to. For example, you might have setup subscriptions initially in componentDidMount() which you should unsubscribe when component is destroyed to avoid memory leaks in your application. You can also remove event listeners which were subscribed before. In this lifecycle hooks you should not update state of your component because component is not going to re-render now.import React, { Component } from 'react';  class App extends Component {    componentWillUnmount() {  // Component will be removed from DOM now.        // Unscubscribe subscriptions and events here.  document.removeEventListener("click", this.handleSubmit);    }  }Conclusion In this article we talked about React, its components and its different lifecycles. It is very crucial to understand the different opportunities that React provides through these lifecycle methods. There are many rules we need to follow while working with these hooks. Making them do something they can’t handle can cause performance issues or even infinite loops at times.  These lifecycle hooks work with props and state which are the most used properties of component class. Changes in state and props trigger different lifecycle hooks and even re-render the dom which is something you should be aware of. These lifecycle hooks are provided to intercept the different stages a component goes through and make the best use of it, but without understanding how they work it can break your application by causing performance issues or memory leaks. Hope this has been helpful. 
What are React Component Lifecycle Methods

React is the most popular JavaScript library us... Read More

Guide to Prince2® Foundation 6th Edition Exams in 2021

PRINCE2® Certification comprises of two certification levels—Foundation and Practitioner. You can become PRINCE2 Foundation certified by passing the Foundation exam. There are no prerequisites for attempting this exam. The second qualification in the PRINCE2 suite is the Practitioner credential. Professionals attempting to gain the Practitioner credential must hold the PRINCE2 Foundation or an equivalent credential.The certifying body for the PRINCE2 credential is Axelos, and PeopleCert conducts the PRINCE2 examinations on behalf of Axelos. Candidates can register to appear for the examination through an Accredited Training Organization (ATO) such as KnowledgeHut--a Certified Partner of AXELOS.One can attend a training course with an ATO or study privately and then book an online examination, either through the ATO or PeopleCert. The PRINCE2 project management framework is composed of four integrated elements namely:  Principles- the building blocks upon which the themes and processes are based  Themes- the knowledge areas or aspects which need to be continuously addressed throughout the life cycle of a project Processes -which tell who does what and when, and lastly  Tailoring the environment which implies sizing the project to suit the needs of the project environment.The weightage given to them in the Foundation Exam is  Principles-13% Themes-52% Processes-27%  Projects & P2 -8%.  One must master the Managing Successful Projects with PRINCE2 Manual (2017) in order to pass the Foundation exam. The Foundation exam is a stepping stone to gain the Practitioner credential and what you study here will be of relevance even in the Practitioner exam.Foundation Exam Pattern This exam comprises 60 Multiple Choice Questions to be completed in a duration of 1 hour. The pass percentage is 55%. The exam will include 5 questions on key concepts of PRINCE2 like characteristics of a project, Six aspects of project performance, Integrated elements of PRINCE2 , benefits of PRINCE2 and customer /supplier environment etc., about 8 questions on Principles, 3 to 5 questions on each theme and 2 to 3 questions on Processes. Four options will be given for each question. Make sure to read the problem statement carefully before ticking one out of the four options. There is no negative marking, so make sure to attempt all the questions.Eligibility for Foundation Examination There are no set eligibility criteria to attempt the Foundation exam. But it is recommended that you should have a basic understanding of the Principles of project management or have completed a generic management course, or you could be working in an organization in a support role.Passing the Foundation Examination Study the PRINCE2 Manual thoroughly  The Purpose of each theme or process should be clear and noted. Know key words for each section. For eg. ‘fit for purpose’ means that the question is about Quality theme, while ‘Desirable, Viable, Achievable’ relate to the Business Case theme. Read Appendices A and C as many times as possible. Practice the Sample Papers of P2 Foundation Exam of PeopleCert available online. Many other Sample papers are also available online.  Here is how the Instructions on the Foundation Paper appear Instructions You should attempt all 60 questions. Each question is worth one mark. There is only one correct answer per question.  You need to answer 33 questions correctly to pass the exam.  Mark your answers on the answer sheet provided. Use a pencil (NOT pen).  You have 1 hour to complete this exam.  This is a ‘closed book’ exam. No material other than the exam paper is allowed. A sample of the questions is as below :-  What is the first step in the recommended risk management procedure? A. Assess  B. Identify  C. Implement  D. Plan Circle the bubble fully on the answer sheet provided against the question number with a dark pencil.Suggested Method of Attempting a QP Start from Q1 and go up to Q 60. Answer as many as you know fully well.  On second reading, attempt those that required you to think a little. The balance questions for which you are not a 100% sure of the answers, can be guessed.  There is 25% chance that you will get it correct since there are only four options and one of them is correct. Also, keep in mind that there is no negative marking. Benefits of Doing PRINCE2 Certification The PRINCE2 Foundation Certification is recognized all over the world as the de facto project management methodology to drive successful projects. PRINCE2 helps you efficiently plan, initiate and control projects. The course will empower you to communicate with stakeholders and team members. You will learn to use the knowledge of 7 Principles, 7 Themes and & Processes in executing a project by breaking it into manageable stages. You will be able to manage and control Risks, Issues and Resources. Another ability that you would pick up is writing the objectives and Scope of the project. Most projects fail because the management is not clear about the objectives of the project. In addition, if the scope of the project is not well defined, the chances of failure of a project increase.  Look at the six main aspects or variables of a project which a Project Manager has to manage.  They are:  Cost Time Scope Quality Risks and  Benefits.  The first two are of top priority. The Business Case written and amplified in the pre project processes, defines the cost and timescale besides listing the Benefits, Risks and stating the Quality requirements of the product based on the Customer’s Quality Expectations and Acceptance Criteria.   The other main aspect, that is Scope is the sum total of the project’s products and the extent of their requirements. While a Business Case tells us ‘Why’ we are doing a project, the scope tells us as to what exactly the project is delivering. It is apparent that if a project has to succeed then as a Project Manager you should be able to define the scope of the project and ensure that it is not exceeded. Gold Plating, as it is termed in Project Management, leads to failure because you will keep adding to the cost.Cost of Foundation ExaminationIn AustraliaAus. Dollar 700/=IndiaRs 18000 to Rs25000/=Europe£ 450.Accredited Training Organization (ATO) KnowledgeHut is one of the reputed training providers worldwide, check out PRINCE2 Foundation Training to know more.  Conclusion Passing the PRINCE2 Foundation exam gives you the qualification of a PRINCE2 Foundation certified professional. Gaining the PRINCE2 Foundation will help you enhance your career and equip you with expertise to manage projects in your organization. You will start getting better at understanding the objectives and scope of the project. You will know how to effectively list the requirements of the project and the stake holders, so that all requirements can be met on completion of the project. You will have the capability to logically break down a project into manageable chunks (Product Breakdown Structure- see Appx D of the manual).  Above all, you will be prepared and eligible for the higher certification in the PRINCE2 suite; that is the Practitioner Credential Exam. 
Guide to Prince2® Foundation 6th Edition Exams...

PRINCE2® Certification comprises of two certifi... Read More

The Best Product Development Process

What Is Product Development? Product development relates to the creation of a new product that has some benefit; up-gradation of the existing product; or improvement of the production process, method, or system. In other words, it is all about bringing a change for the better in the present goods or services or the mode of production.  Product development includes the following elements:Creation and Innovation pave the process for new discoveries and the creation of a new product that offers benefits to the consumers. Amendment of the existing products is essential to enhance the past products and to attain perfection. Improvement of the existing production process, methods, and practices helps give customers an improved experience. It is cost-efficient for the organization too. For Example; Apple CEO Steve Jobs envisioned an idea of using a touch screen to interact with a computer, which would allow him to directly type onto the display, instead of using a stylus. This idea of a touch screen was first implemented for the first iPhone that was launched in 2007 in the US. Apple, with its new product development, revolutionized the way we use mobile gadgets.Why Is It So Important to have a Product Development Process? Product development is the procedure for the successful development of new products or adding new features to the current product. In business terms, the product development policy provides a skeleton that aids enhancement of the performance and quality of products.  The approaches outlined below can bring up scores of advantages to help and expand the business in today’s contentious market. Control over productThe development of a product without a decent approach is quite a precarious challenge. To manage and to be sure of success, it is necessary to plan the development of your products or services and this is what the business or organization requires. The planning would help in fulfilling business goals. Enhanced performanceSeveral times, even after spending thousands of dollars on promotion or marketing the product, a business owner faces setbacks because of poor quality of the product. Hence, it is important to monitor the production and other processes to preserve a record of wrongdoings and improve the same. Reduce costCreating and implementing new products leads to additional cost to the company. The owner has to bear a huge cost in the primary stages of product development, but after the execution process, it is noticed that there is a decrease in product development cost.The History of Product Development Processes Product improvement is closely tied to creativity, invention, and insight—and follows the vision of an idea. For example: the present-day Gas stove is the consequence of some ancient human's insight that a fire is created by rubbing two stones together: the rest was product development. According to Michael McGrath (in Next Generation Product Development), keen focus on the development process began late in the 19th century. McGrath divides the time since into "generations" of product development importance. First ending in 1950s, the focus was on commercialization of discoveries; in the second, formalization of product development as a process began, and this lasted until the 1980s. In the third "generation" of product development, corporate management concentrated on getting products to market faster. In the 21st century, according to McGrath, stress had shifted to R&D-based development. All types of strategies to product development proceed to exist side-by-side. As in gambling, no "method" ensures success.Product Development Process Models There are different software development life cycle models defined which are helpful in designing the software development process.  Some important and popular SDLC models supported in the industry are as follows: Waterfall Process Model Iterative Process Model Spiral Process Model V Process Model Big Bang Process Model Agile Process Model RAD Process Model Prototyping Process Models Waterfall ModelThe Waterfall Model is the traditional Process Model. It is considered as a linear-sequential life cycle model. Waterfall model at each stage must accomplish the next phase before and there should be no overlapping phases.Iterative Process Model  Iterative process starts with an easy implementation of a subset of the software requirements and iteratively improves the evolving versions until the full system is implemented.  With every  new iteration, new design modifications are produced and new functional capabilities are added.  Spiral Process Model The spiral model has four phases. A software project repeatedly passes through these phases in iterations called Spirals i.e. Identification, Design, Construct or Build and Evaluation and Risk Analysis. V Process Model The V-model is an SDLC model where execution of processes occurs in a sequential manner in a V-shape. It is also acknowledged as Verification and Validation model. The V-Model is an extension of the waterfall model. Big Bang Process Model The Big Bang model is an SDLC model where we do not follow any definite process. The development begins with the required money and efforts as the input, and the output is the software developed which may or may not be as per customer demand. Agile Process Model Agile product development life cycle promotes frequent inspection and adaptation. The methodologies rely on the experience of small teams and teamwork to address any changes and promote trusted customer collaboration. Agile product development methods begin things in small increments. Iterations are small; typically of one to four weeks duration. RAD Process Model The RAD (Rapid Application Development) model is based on prototyping and iterative development with no special planning involved. The method of drafting the software itself involves the planning required for producing the product. Software Prototype Process Model The Software Prototyping refers to building software application prototypes which illustrate the functionality of the product under development, but may not truly hold the precise logic of the original software.What Is the Product Development Lifecycle? The product life cycle is an influential concept in marketing. It defines the stages a product goes through right from its inception to when it is removed from the market. Not all products relinquish the final stage. Some advance and grow while others rise and fail. The main stages of the product life cycle are: Research & development - Researching and developing the product before it is made available for sale in the market Introduction – Driving the product into the market Growth – When sales are expanding at their fastest rate Maturity – Sales are near their highest, but the percentage of growth is slowing down, e.g. new rivals in market or saturation Decline – Final step of the cycle, when sales begin to fallThis can be illustrated by looking at the sales during the time span of the product.What is a New Product Development Process? The product development method is a well-defined series of steps or stages a company uses to achieve its accomplishment of new offerings. Every company develops new product or services, but product development processes vary considerably from one company to another depending on the industry, the product type, whether the product is an incremental improvement or a breakthrough innovation, and the extent to which you focus on product portfolio management. What are the six steps of a traditional new product development process? A typical product development process of this kind has six steps with five gates. Step 1: Product Discovery  Step 2: Definition of Product Step 3: Product Business Case Development  Step 4: Detailed Product Design  Step 5 Validation/Testing of product developed Step 6: Product Launch Step 1: Product Discovery This initial step or stage of the new product development process is where new product ideas originate. A company forms a small team to study the idea and initial draft of the product, perform market analysis, and explore technical and market risk. The concept is the most important step for new products as this is where the most product ideas come from - and this determines the necessity for the development. If the study or product concept is wrong at the early stage, then not only is time wasted but it also increases opportunity cost.    Step 2: Definition of Product This stage encompasses polishing the definition of the product. The team creates the first comprehensive evaluation of the technology, and the market and business features of the new product concept. Developers and managers review and illustrate the important points of differentiation for the new product. If this process is carried out incorrectly, then it can increase time to market or cause the product to misinterpret the needs of the market. Step 3: Product Business Case Development Action supports the organization’s investment in the development of a product by having the team create a comprehensive business plan. This plan comprises exhaustive market research. The team explores the new product and where the intended product fits within it, and also creates a monetary model for the innovative offering that makes presumptions about market share. Step 4: Detailed Product Design The team outlines and assembles a working prototype of the product. In most cases they alpha-test the archetype, working with customers in an iterative manner; receiving feedback, and incorporating it into the prototype. This step in the new product development process is sometimes called Development, and charters the next step, “Validation/Testing.” Step 5: Validation/Testing of product developed Validation and testing mean ensuring the prototype operates as predicted. It also means verifying the product in the opinions of the customers and markets and testing the viability of the financial model of the product. Step 6: Product launch During the product development process, the team realizes everything required to bring the product to market, including marketing and sales plans.   Gate Reviews Each of these six phases finishes within a gate review where the team gives the management specific, pre-defined deliverables, and displays the outcomes required to move on to the next phase of the product development process.The world is moving away from this waterfall product development approach.  It is extremely process heavy and encourages additional interference from Senior Management.Image sourceMinimum Viable Process: A Modern Approach What value does the planning of a new product development bring to customers? Irrespective of its form-i.e. physical or digital, it should be able to solve the customer’s problem. It doesn't matter how complex the problem would be, but it should deliver a high-quality product that brings value to your customers.  In a nutshell, Minimum Viable Product (MVP) is a variant of a software product that has enough functionalities to satisfy the primary needs of the first users and persuade investors to invest money into it. It is not a fully-grown product, but it can nonetheless bring business privileges and has the potential for additional development.  In other words, an MVP is a working prototype that should: Be fast to build Contemplate all resources (money, developers, etc.) on providing customers with real value Create those features that are important for a product to generate value The theory of an MVP was developed by Eric Ries in his book The Lean Startup. The author believes that the most important factor is to focus on business goals and not on the technology which has only secondary importance. Focus on investigating the market and understand the obstacles your potential customers want to solve.  Any product before it is released to the public is a mere theory. Testing in a real-life scenario is important to collect market feedback and then iterate. Each idea, even the most profound one, brings no business value until it is put into practice. An MVP allows you to verify, without making an ample investment of time and money, if the product attracts new customers when launched.  If your product is successful, continue to develop it so it becomes a foundation for a fully-grown product. When MVP needs improvements to be transformed into a product it should be completely reworked. MVP strategy allows you to considerably shorten your time-to-market.  A Modern, Lean Product Development Process Toyota began its journey with lean product development at Toyota Loom Works. Toyota started manufacturing cars. There were differences in manufacturing conditions between Japan and the USA. Toyota had few skilled engineers and had limited prior experience. Car companies in US employed a well-educated work team and benefited from the research and skill-sets of their engineering teams. To tackle this shortfall in knowledge and experience, Toyota escorted an incremental approach to development that built on their current knowledge and this became the basis of the lean systems. Lean Product Development (LPD) is based on lean thinking and lean principles that originally were developed in lean manufacturing. Lean thinking relates to way of thinking and specific practices that maintain less of everything – less resources, less work-in-process, less time, and less cost – to manufacture a physical product, knowledge product or service product.  The five Lean Thinking Principles are: Define and maximize customer value Identify the value stream and reduce waste Make the value-creating steps flow Empower the team Learn and improve Approach: Creating products that delight customers and meet business objectives. Agile methodology versus Waterfall methodology The waterfall project methodology is a traditional pattern for developing engineering systems that were used in manufacturing and construction projects. When executed in software development, specific tasks completed in one phase need to be assessed and validated before moving to the next phase. It is called a linear and sequential approach, where phases flow downward to the next.  The agile project methodology is an example of an incremental model for software development based on principles that focus more on people, decisions, and manageable responses to change. Planning of the whole project is broken down in small increments or short time spans. Each iteration involves the whole SDLC cycle so that a working product is delivered at the end. Some of the distinct differences are: Agile is an incremental and iterative approach; Waterfall is a linear and sequential approach. Agile distributes a project into sprints; Waterfall distributes project into phases. Agile helps to finish many small projects; Waterfall helps to complete one single project. Agile incorporates a product mindset with a focus on customer satisfaction; Waterfall introduces a project mindset with a focus on successful project delivery. Requirements are planned everyday in Agile, while in Waterfall, requirements are adjusted once at the start. Agile enables requirement changes at any time; Waterfall shuns scope changes once the project starts. Testing is done concurrently with development in Agile; testing stage comes only after the build phase in Waterfall. Testing teams in Agile can take part in specifications change; testing teams in Waterfall do not get involved in specification changes. Agile empowers the entire team to manage the project without a project manager; Waterfall requires a project manager who performs an essential role in every phase. Cross-functional teams Cross-functional collaboration involves people from diverse spheres, bringing together their knowledge, expertise, and experience. The major point is “work-interdependency”. Teams have to work together to accomplish results. Cross-team collaboration has become the demand of continually emerging new technologies, with new competitors scrumming, and companies aspiring to stay on top of the game. The success of a cross-functional team depends on several factors, without which a team would be struggling. Highly motivated team members Teams hold responsibility to achieve the mission Open-minded team members Management to support the team No opposing personal goals Clear priorities or direction Adequate communication Cross-functional collaboration can be a great team building measure and can build a more creative atmosphere. The 8 Benefits of Cross-Functional Team Collaboration are: To bring a gulp of creative ideas Engaged employees Spurring innovative ideas Exercising communication skills Developing management skills Chance to get in leadership roles Break stereotype and benefit from diversity Build better team spiritExample: Product development—Agile methodology (Case Study) Below is the case study of a team that faced issues but managed to implement solutions to resolve the issues and delivered output with high standards Issues Products or Services were not delivered on-time. Rework and burden caused employee stress and customer disappointment Lack of clear and well-defined product development methods Excessive projects in the pipeline; team was small, and resources were spread too thin Projects were continuously reprioritized leading to incompetent resource utilization Lack of clarity to project status The absence and missing of key resources led to inefficient product development Lack of strategic management Poor communication and hand-offs between departments Solution implemented Designed a portfolio management system that managed an appropriate and optimal number of projects based on available resources Acquired a scalable and robust lean product development process with integrated lean/agile techniques Implemented cross-functional teams with designated roles and responsibilities Standardized project management processes and enhanced project clarity across the organization Coached the product management team on maturing product strategies and roadmaps Trained and mentored senior management and project team members What made the solution successful? Active and strong senior management buy-in and support played an important role in implementing the solutions at high standards Built organizational knowledge that can be used in other active projects Projects were kept on hold until resources were available Efficient project planning facilitated proper collaboration within cross-functional teams Product development strategies and roadmaps helped the development team Daily stand-up meetings organized helped cross-functional teams to monitor project work, front and center Accommodated implementation timing based on the organization’s capability Effect or Consequence Within a couple of months, important and high priority projects were completed on-time (some early); the client was hence satisfied The client acquired a major contract from the customer due to improved on-time delivery and this, in turn, ensured more business Enhanced communication and coordination across all departments Senior management was competent to evaluate and prioritize the most important projects  Weekly Reports granted visibility to project status Product development and lean/agile processes are now efficiently embedded into the organization The internal conflicts between team members and departments have declined ConclusionNew product development is about transforming new and uninitiated ideas into workable products. This product will be your brainchild, which will provide a contentious advantage and help monopolize the market.The eight stages of product development may seem like a lengthy process, but they are outlined to save time and resources. New product improvement plans and prototypes are experimented with to assure that the new product will meet target market demands and desires. Implement a test launch during the test or marketing stage as a full market launch would be expensive. Finally, the commercialization stage is meticulously planned to maximize product success. A poor launch will affect product sales and could even affect the reputation and vision of the new product.Hence, A Certified Scrum Product Owner® (CSPO®) is one such certification that helps holders become successful product owners by training them on aspects of on-time delivery of high-value releases and maximizing the ROI.
The Best Product Development Process

What Is Product Development? Product development... Read More