What is a Product Roadmap? The Ultimate Guide and Resources

The technology roadmap typically displays various projects that support technology stacks within your organization. This type of roadmap is typically very high level and is great for demonstrating how your products align with your overall technology portfolio. In fact, some companies even share their product roadmaps with the public. A technology roadmap, also called an IT roadmap, is a tool to visualize how IT will evolve to support the business and its core products.

what is an IT roadmap

Developing a clear and concise roadmap is key to keeping employees focused and motivated. As long as your team is aligned toward the same goal, product development will be much more efficient. This can only be accomplished if the entire team understands the product’s role in its development.

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They instead plot services on a curve that provides a lot of information at a quick glance. Understanding who your colleagues are is a fundamental step towards building your roadmap. You need to talk to them about the solutions you are proposing. Many roadmaps include status labels, colors, or other indicators to show when work is on track or at risk.

what is an IT roadmap

The dots signify dates for different release milestones at the corporate level across both products. By clarifying strategic goals and then linking work to that strategy, you ensure that the team is focused on the activities that bring you closer to your goals. Use your roadmap to align different teams, portfolios, or areas of the business. When you onboard with an IT provider, you encounter a similar dilemma. Your provider could be the best in the business, but if they do not know your short-term and long-term IT goals, they cannot get you where you want to be.

Strategy Roadmap

Rather, the roadmap evolves as progress is made, external factors change and more information becomes available. The frequency with which a roadmap is updated depends largely on the time frame under consideration. Typically, national-level roadmaps are updated periodically (e.g., every two to five years). Technology-specific roadmaps are sometimes updated more frequently to reflect progress, changes in available resources or scheduling considerations.

Marketing will be able to understand, at a glance, the status of the latest tech to be added or upgraded. A project or program manager uses an IT Strategic Plan to implement an IT Strategy. They use an IT Roadmap to communicate with the steering committee and senior management. An IT Roadmap is a critical tool for the steering committee to set and ensure direction for the initiative. Lastly, it’s incredibly helpful for IT teams to have an easy-to-read document that keeps them up-to-date on all of the systems they are managing.

We want PhpStorm to be the best tool for you, so we’ll share our intentions and ideas, and of course we are open to any criticism and suggestions. Colors – assign different colors to different work components to better differentiate stages of your initiative and communicate them visually. Progress – indicate the status of different work items and the overall progress towards goals by using shaded bars, colors, checkmarks or % percent complete indicators.

Steps to creating an IT roadmap

If there are several supporting projects that role up into a larger strategic goal, you can show those individually as well. Before we can start talking about roadmaps, we need to understand what one is. An IT roadmap is a strategic tool that can help graphically illustrate both long-term and short-term plans.

what is an IT roadmap

Partnering with the right tech consulting company allows you to harness the benefits without the headache. Partnering with a technology consultant for assistance with articulating the vision and strategy of your business can help you move ahead faster with expert guidance and eliminate pitfalls along the way. With new technology popping up every day, it can be hard to keep track of what your business really needs. Having a roadmap will not only keep you on the right path and ensure you are only investing in a way that makes sense for your business, but it’s also helpful for other departments. All 45+ of our roadmap templates can be accessed in Roadmunk for free. Get all your project stakeholders on the same page using this roadmap template.

An introduction to technology roadmaps

You may have heard your IT provider mention your organization’s “IT Roadmap,” a document outlining your current IT setup and both short-term and long-term goals. If your provider has not mentioned roadmap, you may soon discover IT-related frustrations, including a drop in productivity and IT budgeting issues. Create a template you’ll stick to when developing IT roadmaps.

  • Despite this, it is important to visualize this flow from goal to potential solutions and note how many different paths can lead to the same result.
  • An engineering IT roadmap is a technical plan outlining a long-term vision for developing software or physical products.
  • But don’t hesitate to make adjustments as your revise your strategy every quarter or six months.
  • Later, determine the detailed work that belongs to each initiative.
  • Strategic planning is an essential part of managing projects or activities of any kind, and it’s especially important in implementing your business vision.

Historically for technical reasons, PhpStorm performed on-the-fly analysis with third-party tools, such as CodeSniffer, on temporary copies of real files. This was a safer and more reliable way to implement it, but the downside is that some features didn’t work as expected, for example the ability to exclude files by path. By the way, you can generate your own shared indexes for your private projects. Agenda – once you determine to whom you will present your roadmap, set an appropriate agenda of what core aspects you will capture and discuss. This gives your audience the right expectation for what they will see along the way.

“A roadmap will slow agile teams down.”

The technology roadmap is typically owned by the engineering and operations teams. After all, these teams are focused on the components, systems, and processes that help other internal teams deliver products and services to external customers. Start building your first roadmap with our free downloadable roadmap templatesthat you can easily tailor to your requirements. While some of them allow you to share high-level business goals, others are more suitable for conveying a more detailed view of your initiatives. You can also find examples designed for certain types of industries or organizations. Simply put, a roadmap is a strategic planning technique that places a project’s goals and major deliverables on a timeline, all grouped in a single visual representation or graphic.

Creating a technology roadmap is only one the part of the process. The crucial point is to share the roadmap with key stakeholders to make them informed on the overall plan. It includes a range of tools for strategic planning, product roadmapping, and change management. With Cascade, you can build roadmaps with an intuitive drag-and-drop builder and get automatically generated visual representations of your strategic plans.

Prioritize and determine requirements – break down the activities that best support your strategy into smaller units of work. Review and assess potential features – use a scoring mechanism to weigh potential features and decide which of them bring the most value to your initiative. To help you save time, you can download these examples https://globalcloudteam.com/ for free (we’ve built them using PowerPoint and the Office Timelineadd-in) so you can get started right away. It shares general plans with external audiences such as partners and advisory boards. Both roadmaps have different components and implementation and usage. Epics are the large categories of work that span multiple releases.

Maintain your systems

When a company decides to build on or update a product, it uses the roadmap. Product managers guide the teams using the product roadmap software. Various product manager tools are available in the market to build the product that serves the end goal.

After the roadmap is completed, your provider should revisit it quarterly with you to be sure they are helping you meet your goals in a timely fashion. A clear IT roadmap helps to prevent it by giving you full control over your growing stack of SaaS tools. You’ll never forget about recurring subscriptions you don’t need anymore or purchase new software when your existing systems are capable of performing the tasks you need. In most roadmaps of this style, the organizational goals are on the left side of the roadmap with a Gannt style timeline that describes the implementation timeline.

It can be useful to add status labels, category tags, and other indicators that will help the team draw conclusions about progress and the balance of work. The U.S. National Blueprint for Transportation Decarbonization is part of President Joe Biden’s goal of reaching net zero emissions by 2050 and creating a clean electrical grid by 2035. It includes plans to boost electric vehicles , design more pedestrian friendly communities and put money towards public transportation options like buses and trains, The Washington Post reported. Timeframe – include a timeline to highlight the upcoming work within a relevant time period. If your initiative is planned to happen over a three-month interval, it doesn’t make sense to use a year-long timeframe.

There are many ways you can use these roadmap examples to make better decisions around your strategic initiatives. Explore the roadmap templatespage to discover which one fits you best, then download and customize them as you like. A business applications or technology roadmap shows the technology available to employees today and considers the tools that are scheduled for end-of-life. You could organize the roadmap by tools, functional groups, or capabilities. In many cases, several teams will need the same technology or solution.

However, it can be useful to include feature details when sharing the roadmap with the engineers and operators who will be completing the work. Each functional group within the IT department may want its what is an IT roadmap own roadmap for special projects or initiatives. For example, you may build a separate roadmap for the security and compliance team. Or you might want a roadmap for the organization’s DevOps initiatives.

Unfortunately, these tools are unlikely to help you make a real impact — having clear goals to work towards is key to successful strategic planning. A technology roadmap is a visualization of your strategic IT plans. Examples of focus areas that might go on a technology roadmap include updating infrastructure and platforms or managing a data transformation. A good technology roadmap usually includes goals and initiatives, new system capabilities, release plans, milestones, resources, training, risk factors, and status reports. Product roadmap is a visual plan communicating your product vision and its development stages created and managed by your product team. It’s entirely focused on the product your company is building and what features or development work your engineering team is working on.

So, by now you know that a company-wide roadmapping process can help you boost visibility into each team’s goals and how they’re working towards executing a high-level business strategy. Each department within your company has different needs and priorities that will translate differently onto a roadmap . Four Product Management Skills You Might Not Know You Need If you’ve worked as a product manager, or even researched job postings looking for your first product management position, you’re… How to Evaluate Top Roadmapping Solutions You’ve got a new feature or product to build.

You have to make tradeoff decisions about the work that is most strategically aligned and connect all the details back to top-level company goals. Unlike a product roadmap, a strategy roadmap focuses on a broader range of activities. In addition to changes to the products and services of an organization, it may also include changes to its structure and processes.

While it focuses on product roadmaps, it’s also useful for creating strategic IT roadmaps. The tool helps to prioritize tasks, capture feedback, and collaborate directly within a roadmap. Goals are measurable, time-bound objectives that you determine as part of the strategic planning process. For example, many IT teams set goals to cut operating costs, enhance automation, or improve the release management process. Including goals in your roadmap allows you to show the “why” behind all of the detailed work. Unlike strategy documents, which focus on the granular tasks required duringproduct development, product roadmaps are comparatively high-level.

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