blog from Opus Una

Why build a prototype? Well..Why wouldn’t you?!

By Sharmil Patwa, Managing Director, Opus Una

Share this resource


Engineering - Turbo Traction

Investors want to see traction and know that their money will be spent wisely. Working technology and a clear product validation path are critical. Prototype vs POC vs MVP is an important early-stage decision. A well-presented articulation of the business model is also key. Few early stage firms have all...

view solution


Expert Laser – Laser Coach (Masterclasses)

Our Masterclass format: Virtual interactive classroom sessions 10-15 company participants per class or arrange a bespoke private agenda All sessions followed by ‘clinic’ to get answers to your specific questions and pain points Access to support guides and templates on each class topic, available post-completion 1 hour complementary consultancy follow up session with our experts...

view solution


Expert Laser - Laser Consult

The problem we’re solving: Start-ups and Early Stage companies often require pin-point ‘one-off’ external expertise Where this expertise can’t be filled by board ‘advisors’, there is a knowledge gap Typically, when firms require additional external expertise in key areas they use consultants Where the insight/expertise required is very specific, larger firms can use ‘expert...

view solution


FinTech Strategy

We have taken the skills, experience, knowledge-base and networks developed through our consulting business to create a proposition to support our growing FinTech client base. We can help you to: Market Identify clients, competitors and addressable markets Use our network to get the ‘inside track’. Our specialist Wealth Management research partners support our...

view solution


Off-shore Engineering

Huge opportunities exist for small or scaling companies to take advantage of new and highly skilled software engineering resource pools in low-cost locations. However, major barriers and logistical challenges exist for companies without dedicated technology management teams or those which lack experience or the necessary bandwidth to source and manage remote...

view solution


Product Development & Governance

Successful product development requires a deep understanding of the firm’s strategy and operations, technical product expertise, excellent project management skills, a sound understanding of risk management, laser-focus on client outcomes and robust product governance to be in place. Product governance itself extends beyond developing policy, process and frameworks. How these are embedded into...

view solution


Project Management

We are experts in business transformation. Our resources have learned their consulting craft at some of the world’s best known consultancies. They have also worked ‘in-house’ as practitioners in top tier banks and wealth managers. We believe that this blend of consulting discipline and practitioner experience is a key determinant...

view solution
by Opus Una
| 13/05/2020 12:00:00

Last month we posted on the challenges for FinTechs in raising seed capital. This month we are beginning to dive a little deeper on these challenges. First off, we look at prototyping.

As a Start-up or Early Stage FinTech there are different frameworks and methodologies that you can use to validate your proposition at each stage of development. At Opus Una we are big proponents of lean start-up, design thinking and the importance of understanding the risks associated with:

  • Desirability – Is the market big enough? Will customers want the solution you’ve created? Can the company acquire and retain the targeted customers?
  • Feasibility – Can the business access all the resources necessary to build and deliver the product?
  • Viability – Can the business generate sufficient revenue and can costs be managed to make a sustainable profit?

To answer these big questions, start-ups will develop hypotheses which they must test. To test, they will devise experiments. There are many different types of experiments which include:

  • Surveys
  • Simple landing pages
  • Website trend analysis
  • Split tests

And of course, prototypes. At Opus Una we believe that for a business at avery early stage, a prototype is one of the best types of experiments because it:

  • Helps the team better understand what they are designing through a strong visualisation
  • Allows for early feedback on the solution and therefore product validation before development
  • Massively reduces cost of correction
  • Allows you to gain insights on how real users would actually use the product

We often talk about prototyping as both helping with product validation and supporting fund-raising almost as two separate outcomes. But of course, for investors the ability to touch and feel the product (even if there are ducks paddling under the water to mimic the back end), is a form of validation for them and therefore supports fundraising.

A huge number of tools are available, all with the core aim of enabling rapid and iterative prototype build, usually without the need for code. Design tools allow you to create, import or edit sketches, application wireframes, screen mock-ups and user interactions. Large component libraries of templates and styles are accessible to aid real-time design and review. Remote or in person team collaboration is possible through parallel editing functionality, idea boards and online review.

Showcasing finished prototypes with external stakeholders is a critical platform capability – shared with user groups on web or mobile devices and with ability to add commentary and manage feedback. Done right, your users will experience the visuals, interactions, and navigation of your product with a fraction of the investment.

In summary, if you are a start-up B2C FinTech, prototyping is a no-brainer, particularly in validating desirability of your product. 

See original blog: