What is a product roadmap? It is a communication tool. Typically used for software and product development. It provides a means to show the direction and goals for software and products. While also providing flexibility and adaptability. As the work will change and evolve as you move forward.
However, there are misconceptions about its use. These ideas are inherited from other parts of the process. These things impact the effectiveness of product roadmaps. They hinder and stop the ability to communicate with the stakeholders and teams that need this information.
But how do you fix these things?
Product Roadmaps Relaunched has the info to help you create roadmaps that are flexible and embrace the uncertainty of Agile software development.
Who Is This Book For?
Check out this book if you are in product and you want to improve your roadmaps. This covers a wide array of individuals. Anyone in product or affiliated with product work teams. This is anyone that helps to prioritize work, develop products, or work with stakeholders, users, and teams to develop products or services.
Product roles often have tremendous responsibility across a large number of varying types of work. Organizing that and being able to communicate that in concise displays that show where the product development work is going or where we want it to go requires special skills and tools. AKA, the product roadmap.
Those that could benefit from this text involve product managers, product directors, or product owners. There are also product specialists and product analysts. The titles can vary so much from org to org. There are also the roles that work with product roles that could benefit. Roles like project manager, development managers, technical leads, user experience, customer success, and even quality engineers. All work with product development. The important thing to remember is anyone who works in and around product development can benefit from these ideas and this text.
The Product Roadmap Relaunched text helps anyone, regardless of title. If your job involves some form of understanding of where the product is going or intended to go, contributing to team success, developing a plan, then the text can benefit you.
If your team is using an inefficient product roadmap process, this text is especially helpful. Often it turns out that orgs are using some form of a project plan instead. Understanding that the roadmap process used by your org is not working to its full capacity is the first step to fixing it.
How product should use this book
Understanding that creating a product roadmap is an ever-evolving process is the first step. The product roadmap is an ever-changing visualization of the current and planned work for the product team. Understanding that it is not a rigid plan to be followed is tremendously helpful.
Product roadmaps are used to influence and inform teams in the organization. It is used to steer everyone involved with the product. And helps to deliver on company goals and strategy. By way of keeping those in the product working towards the most valuable items to the organization.
Product Roadmaps Relaunched shows how to create an effective roadmap. The book demonstrates how to align stakeholders and prioritize the work. It also shows how to communicate about the products. Helping with all of the following:
- Build a vision for the product that will gain support
- Sharing product roadmap details without it being an rigid plan
- Protect against chasing too many work items, items that distract from top priority work
- Prioritize prioritize prioritize
- Getting alignment with all involved with the product
- Getting team support by building understanding of the goals and value to be gained
- Help business side teams to work with you instead of being counter-productive
- Embrace a user focus on the product development
- Understand opportunities in the product
Why check this out
This text helps understand the process needed to create this powerful tool. It gives great information on the process, from start to finish. Getting into the inputs needed, creating a vision for the product, understanding the customer needs and goals, diving into needs and solutions, understanding proper prioritization, getting buy-in, presenting, and keeping it current.
All are tremendously important and powerful to building products of value!
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A great resource on product roadmap processes from Aha, here.