The development path of an initial idea into a new functionality

Oct 18, 2022 | Blog, Insights

In the beginning, there is an initial idea. A fragment of a phrase from a conversation suddenly springs to mind. A question to colleagues, “has this ever come up with your client?“. And in no time, we are in full swing at work, conceptualizing a new functionality!

The development of systems and functionalities can get an initial impetus from almost anything. Sometimes the client has a clear need, sometimes the stone in the shoe rubs a little but no blister has yet appeared.

System development is the sum of many factors, teamwork at its best and involving many steps. Clarifying the context and the essence of the problem. Curiously trying to understand the past, challenge the existing, try to peek into the future. Focus on the big picture, dive into the details, notice all the points of convergence, list the stakeholders. Boldly asking all the questions that comes to mind. And finally, to create a working solution from all of this.

Therefore, an IT company needs a wide range of expertise. In Profit Software, this means not only industry specific core competences, such as expertise in system architecture, coding in several languages, UX and UI competence and project management, but also widespread knowledge of the insurance and financial sector. However, for the final solution to really meet the customer’s needs and carry far into the future, the dialogue with the customer and system users plays a significant role.

From the initial idea, the next step is to create a concept-level picture of how the system should work. Already at this stage, we are happy to involve customers in the conversation. According to our experience, just a process map can trigger surprisingly lengthy discussions. New ideas pop up and the understanding of the whole matter deepens. The picture is not always finished in one go, sometimes two or three iterations are needed. Especially when the customer’s need is clear, there is a temptation to speed up the process at this stage, but experience has also shown the importance of a good foundation. The need and the corresponding solution may still become even more sharp.

Also during the development work itself, we maintain an active dialogue with the customer. From the more overall conceptual level, we dive deeper, and the focus is transferred to the details of the solution. Subject-matter experts are involved in workshops and demos, views are exchanged, and the direction of development is commented. A good process during which also the customer learns something new and gets a new perspective.

Solution Analyst Irene Palazzo & Project Manager Maija Pietilä

Profit Life & Pension (PLP) policy management system is specifically developed for life insurance companies and supports handling of a wide variety of investment instruments. In the most recent development project for handling of illiquid investments, Project Manager Maija Pietilä has made use of her experience of investment products from her previous working life.

— This experience has clearly been useful both in concepting and in discussing with customers, says Maija. — It has been easy to understand the product and the requirements related to its management.

Solution Analyst Irene Palazzo, on the other hand, is deeply familiar with PLP’s savings solutions.

— It has been interesting to think about how existing functions can be used in a new way, says Irene. —There is no need to completely reinvent the wheel. In PLP you can already manage most of the simplest illiquid investment functions, but now we have conceptualized the management of more complex structures.

If you want to hear more about our concept of handling illiquid investments, please contact us!


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