Back in the 90’s we had the dream of the Software Factory. Smart people would distil requirements. They would think very hard about the problem and would write down a solution in a document. After all this hard work, it was just a matter of sending it down to the boys in IT to do the implementation.
What a different time. What a naive worldview.
Surely, it’s obvious now that without technical knowledge you cannot come up with a technical solution? Surely, nobody still believes that the functional and the technical are separate, decoupled worlds?
Alas, the industry is still rife with this backwards thinking. We’ve got all kinds of Product Management Guru’s that will tell you the real work is thinking up a solution. They have all kinds of arcane and non-falsifiable processes that are only for the anointed. If you demand proof, you’re not a believer. Or worse: too technical.
They’ll claim the functional and the technical are “non-overlapping magisteria”. As if the business is not impacted by the implementation.
You can’t develop great products without involving the developers from the start. And in case of software products, “developers” means software developers.
Salespeople can’t come up with the solution. Neither can analysts. Neither can whatever a Solution Architect is. It’s all talk until the code runs.
Discovery and delivery are not two separate worlds. They are the same thing and they should be done by the same people.
Leaving the discovery to non-technical people is treating the product as an afterthought.
There really is no excuse for that.