How we provide roadmap transparency using Aha!

Aron Seidman

Vice President, Product Management

We had a problem

We had a trouble ticketing tool that we used to track and manage product enhancements. It guided our product development roadmap as well. Unfortunately, ticketing tools are text based and not intended to be used to articulate a product development roadmap. We knew it just wasn’t working for us. The team would get together to talk about strategy and goals for product roadmapping. While the meetings were helpful and brought the team together, being unable to document as we went meant that someone had to transcribe the conversation later and then update the team offline. We had to go back and plug it all into PowerPoint. Of course, we had to keep refining it and sending out the doc as plans changed. The whole process was time-consuming and difficult. This also made keeping Sales and Client Services teams up-to-date on the roadmap challenging. Sometimes the link between strategies and goals was not apparent to everyone on the team. In general, we had trouble communicating and iterating overall portfolio plans with everyone, including the executive team. We needed to get away from the misused ticketing tool. We wanted to try something new, something integrated and built for product management teams.

Aha! as a solution

With Aha! we left the troubled ticketing tool behind and put everything into the Aha! framework. Using Aha! for product roadmapping means that discussion, decisions, and documentation happen simultaneously. As we define a product and begin to set goals, we have a place to put it that is accessible to the whole team. Everyone can see how our strategy links with our vision and goals and our product development roadmap timeline becomes tangible.

Aha! drives us to set strategy and goals, and enables everyone to visualize and communicate plans and roadmaps. But the reason I fell in love with it was because of the reaction I got from one of our development leads who said, “My eyes are moist with joy, I can see everything laid out visually for the first time.” It’s changed how we operate.

In Aha! we define our product and plan releases, features, updates and even backlogs. And it’s beautifully laid for the whole team to see and understand. Using the Aha! Publish feature, we can also easily create great looking documentation that we can share both internally and externally. Now this is how product development roadmapping should be done!

Life is good

We finally found a proper roadmapping tool that really works. With Aha! it is much easier for everyone to understand strategies, goals, and roadmaps and all from a single source. We love being able to post our published roadmaps internally and easily update them each week with just a few clicks as opposed to maintaining all those PowerPoints. Our people are excited to be using a cutting-edge, cloud-based and “modern” tool that makes sense of our roadmapping.

Our team is shedding tears of joy because Aha! brought our product roadmapping all together for us!

The management team is also really enjoying the transparency they have into the roadmap and the new enthusiasm from outside the product management team to be a part of the development process. Aha! drives our product development efforts forward!