Posts Tagged ‘Workflow’

We are pleased to present below all posts tagged with ‘Workflow’.

How To Deliver Exceptional Client Service

We often hear companies, including Web agencies, boast about how they provide exceptional client service. But how do they define exceptional? Consider this scenario. You are hired to design and develop a new website for a retail client. The client loves the design, and the pages you develop use the latest in HTML5, CSS3 and responsive design, resulting in a website that works wonderfully across browsers and devices.

How To Deliver Exceptional Client Service

The e-commerce features of the new website help the client significantly increase their online sales, and the entire project is delivered on time and on budget. Now, is this “exceptional” client service? I don’t think it is. When the client hired you, they expected that you would design and develop a great website. They also expected it would be done according to the timeline and budget set during the planning stages of the project. As successful as this project may have been for both you and the client, in the end, you did exactly what you were hired to do. You did your job.

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Guidelines For Outsourcing, Sub-Contracting and Hiring Out

From one artist to another, I know how satisfying it can be to achieve the perfect shade of a color or squeeze the most difficult font into the funkiest space. Having spent some time experimenting with these and other aspects of design, I also know how time-consuming and downright maddening it can be to do these things without enough know-how. Fortunately, there’s an easier way to solve design problems, and I wish I discovered it much earlier.


You can outsource practically anything. (Image: re-ality)

Outsourcing, sub-contracting, hiring it out: whatever you want to call it, it’s a designer’s best friend and a dirty little secret at the same time. Outsourcing not only solves design problems, it solves them cheaply, while you go off to do the things that you really want to do. Here’s how to do just that.

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How Do You Deal With Overstressed, Irrational Clients? An Entrepreneur’s View

As an entrepreneur who has been on the client’s side of the design and development process, I’d like to discuss the thought process of the client, as well as some effective ways to interact with them. For example, why do they ask for Shakira music on the home page? And how do you respond to that?

Explaining something to the client

I was recently referred to Sam Barnes’ piece on Smashing Magazine “How to Explain to Clients That They Are Wrong.” The article was well written and made a lot of sense to me, but there are two sides to every story, and I’d like to add value to the argument by responding from the client’s point of view.

For the most part, Sam did a great job of discussing how to evaluate and act on poor decisions made by clients. What he missed, however, was the impact that the nature of the relationship between clients and creatives has on how decisions are made by both sides. By “creatives,” I mean anyone involved in the design or development of a website or application. Understanding this relationship will enable you, and your clients, to make better decisions about the product.

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The Process of Creativity

The creative attribute has always been a highly debated and researched component of the human psyche. The “designer” job title seems to be one that calls to the more creative minded among us and according to some, requires the highest level of creative processing. This idea does lend itself to the truth, web designers are called upon to find creative solutions every day. However, we certainly aren’t alone.

Contrary to previous belief, creativity does not limit itself to the “right-brained” artistic types. The ability to find creative and innovative solutions to problems holds value in almost all aspects of life. Even those with highly analytical jobs and hobbies benefit from the ability to approach a complex issue from different perspectives and foresee alternate outcomes. So perhaps it shouldn’t come as much of a surprise to suggest that creativity itself is more rooted in a process than random visionary moments.

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Integrating Amazon S3 With WordPress

Computing is full of buzzwords, “cloud computing” being the latest one. But unlike most trends that fizzle out after the initial surge, cloud computing is here to stay. This article goes over Amazon’s S3 cloud storage service and guides you to implementing a WordPress plugin that backs up your WordPress database to Amazon’s S3 cloud. Note that this is not a tutorial on creating a WordPress plugin from scratch, so some familiarity with plugin development is assumed.

The reason for using Amazon S3 to store important data follows from the “3-2-1” backup rule, coined by Peter Krogh. According to the 3-2-1 rule, you would keep three copies of any critical data: the original data, a backup copy on removable media, and a second backup at an off-site location (in our case, Amazon’s S3 cloud).

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“But The Client Wants IE 6 Support!”

Frequently, when I discuss CSS3 with other developers, the issue of stubborn clients comes up. They tell me that even though they personally don’t think a website should look the same in all browsers and they’re eager to try all of these new techniques, their clients insist that their website should look the same, so the developers are stuck with the same Web development techniques that we used five to ten years ago. Their clients just don’t “get” graceful degradation.

Money always wins

Is this really the issue? Are our clients incapable of understanding these things? Is the problem that our clients don’t “get” the Web and need to be educated? I don’t think so. We got ourselves into this. We are the ones who caused this problem for our industry. We are the ones giving ourselves this trouble and making our profession less creative and enjoyable than it could be. It’s entirely our fault and no one else’s.

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Survey: Essential JavaScript for New Projects

Like many developers I have a standard set of files that I simply copy into every new project I start. These include base HTML templates, useful PHP functions, Sass mixins and a number of JavaScript files that I can't live without. With the advent of great libraries like Modernizr and polyfills such as the indepensable html5shim we are becoming more reliant on these resources to help us create great web sites and applications.

I thought it would be interesting to learn more about the libraries and scripts our readers on Smashing Coding use on a daily basis.

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