Build better software

Stop spinning your wheels

When you think of an MVP, you probably think of an all-star—a high-performer who stands out from the crowd.

But a software MVP, aka minimum viable product, is something entirely different. A software MVP isn’t the most sophisticated, feature-rich, high-performing app. In fact, it’s the opposite.

A software MVP is Solution 1.0 It’s the simplest, cheapest and fastest version of the product you can build.

Because the phrase MVP is so often misunderstood, Henrik Kniberg, a Lean/Agile coach and evangelist, prefers to think of the MVP as an ETP or Earliest Testable Product. He uses a sketch like this to illustrate the concept:

In this case, a customer needs to get from Point A to Point B. The development team delivers a skateboard that will move the user from A to B, instead of delivering a ‘part’ of the more sophisticated vehicle that, by itself, isn’t ready for the user to use. The skateboard is Kniberg’s ETP of what the client ultimately wants—a car.

The MVP doesn’t meet all of the customer’s needs, but it gives the team something functional to test. After all, MVPs aren’t final deliverables. They’re learning tools. Thanks to Kniberg’s analogy, some people call them “skateboard products.”

The feedback you get from your skateboard product becomes the features in your next iteration: the handle of the scooter, the engine on the motorcycle, the cabin of the car.

We start with a skateboard

When you build based on assumptions— without an MVP–you take unnecessary risks.

Starting with an MVP means you’re less likely to build the right thing the wrong way. Or the wrong thing entirely.

The idea is that you have to start small in order to think big.


  •  Validate or disprove an idea earlier
  • Socialize a solution
  • Realize value sooner
  • Increase ROI
  • Deploy working software faster
  • Implement improvements more rapidly

 We helped a global financial services leader drastically increase monthly payments

During a 12-week MVP engagement that came in ahead of schedule and under budget, we designed and developed a payment portal that validated a business opportunity that wasn’t being addressed by the client’s existing web app.  


Customer feedback 

"You were able to deliver a lot in a short time. We couldn’t have done that.” — Vice President, OFFICE OF THE CONSUMER

"The teamwork between SingleStone and our team was great.” — Vice President, IT SUPPORT SERVICES

85% of users reported a positive experience

"In an ideal world, all software projects would begin with an MVP. It’s just the way you should build software. Even if you have plans—and the budget—for more.” — Jay Hogan, SINGLESTONE SOLUTION LEAD, SOFTWARE DEVELOPMENT