Drupal in the real world: Challenges of professional enterprise Drupal development

Laura Scott
Presentation by: Laura Scott and Katherine Lawrence
Date of Presentation: 
Thursday, 6 March 2008

What are the realities of running and growing a Drupal development company? What the the advantages? What are the challenges? No “secrets” or stone tablets here: Some of us at pingVision will lead a round-table discussion on this topic, using its own methodologies and experiences not as a basis for prescriptions or “tips and tricks”, but rather as touchstones for more in-depth discussion. What works for you? How can we all be better?

TRACK
This session addresses Business and Marketing as well as Design and User Experience and Site Building.

AGENDA

Kinds of clients.
The professional enterprise organization is different from the small non-profit or start-up. How do you adjust your own style and methodologies (or do you)?
Realistic project management.
How should you plan and manage your projects? Waterfall, Agile, hybrid? A host of assumptions grow out of this decision.
Architecture planning and user experience.
How do you define the project so that everyone’s on the same page regarding what the site should be?
Development techniques.
Paired programming, small teams, solo developers, large swarms … pros and cons, especially in the context of having multiple concurrent projects.
Scope creep.
It always happens, so how do you deal with it?
Involving the client.
Some clients want to micromanage, others just want it done and don’t want to know the details. Either way it can be a challenge.
Staging, deployment.
How do you do it?
Team development.
It’s nice to be able to bring on Drupal rock stars, but how do you bring new people up to speed quickly?
The open source paradigm.
How to work with clients who may not understand how open source development works. What about contributing modules back to the community? Do people really grok the GPL?
Some of these topics seem to be covered extensively in other more specifically focused sessions, so discussion on some topics may be light or even draw upon thoughts from those sessions.

Other issues?

GOALS
The goal is to engage in a discussion about these topics, sharing insights and opinions, so that we all come away with a better understanding of what seems to work and why.

RESOURCES
While there are some excellent books and websites on these topics, there are no prerequisites for this session, except for an interest in hearing and sharing perspectives.