Sometimes it pays to think inside the box.

Forcing yourself to work within a fixed set of parameters can lead you to come up with creative solutions to problems, without overthinking the solution.

This week I’ve been working heavily with a client who has both a limited budget and somewhat non-standard set of requirements. These two scenarios normally elicit a sense of dread in even the most seasoned of web developers, but this time around, it’s we’ve been able to wrangle a solution to most of their problems by simply using the tools we have in front of us.

Modern Content Management Systems like Wordpress and Drupal provide us web developers with a vast array of functionality, and that functionality is extended dramatically by the addition of page-building tools such as Elementor. So, if we have all these tools at our disposal, why not use them?

This requires a creative approach to problem solving. The client wants an outcome, not a specific solution, and so by keeping your focus on what the end result is supposed to be (presenting a certain piece of information, as an example), then the method you go about solving that problem doesn’t need to be precise. So long as the end goal is achieved (the information is clearly and efficiently presented to the customer), then exactly what you did to achieve that isn’t so important.

It also means you CAN’T run off and solve every problem - you don’t have the budget. Sometimes you just have to make do with what you have. If a complete, high-tech events and ticket management system isn’t achievable, use Eventbrite and embed their content on your site!

By thinking inside the box, you’re forced to “get it done”, regardless of whether or not it’s a perfect end solution. We can always come back as budget permits later on, but we can’t launch a website that costs more than the client can afford, so ultimately, sometimes just getting it done is exactly what you need to do. As developers, we can build anything and solve any problem - it’s all just a factor of time and money. But when both of those things are in short supply, you have to get creative with your solutions, and give the client the best possible outcome for the least amount of outlay.

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